Consols and United Mines

Consols and United Mines merged in 1857 to form Clifford Amalgamated Mines. Both were huge successful Copper mines made up from at least 20 smaller concerns. When the mines finally closed in 1870 the total output of Copper was nearly a million tons, selling for around £6,000,000, the worth in the present day would be uncalculateable. The mines stretched from Twelveheads to Carharrack leaving a vast “blasted” landscape of shafts and dumps. It was not until the 1980’s that it was considered a safe place to walk, with hidden shafts and dangers there was always a high risk of a bad fall.
Much of the landscape has changed in recent years with landscaping and shaft capping. The valley was used by Mount Wellington Mine for their Tailings Dam, also underground some of the Consols lodes were cut, but these were hot, wet and difficult to work. In the early 1900’s a company tried to rework some of the mine dumps for Tin, but this was unsuccessful and closed in 1909.
When the mines closed there were 18 Engine Houses and over 80 miles of underground passage, the valley today is quiet but for the noise of car racing on a track over the hill.

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The Clock Tower on Consols, a unique survival, the bell rang to signal the end of a shift.

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The clock mechanism was moved to St Day clock tower where it worked for many years after the mine closed.

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The base of the clock tower showing the finely cut stones around the arch.

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The ruined Stack and Engine House of Taylor’s Shaft Consols, in the background is the Stack for the Whim. Named after the mine manager John Taylor, the house was built in 1827 for a 70″ pumping engine. In 1833 the engine was recylindered to 85″ to increase the pumping capability, the shaft here is 250 Fathoms deep.

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The interior of Taylor’s Pumping Engine House showing the fine stonework.

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The scant remains of the Whim Engine house on Davey’s Shaft Consols. There are the remains of the foundations of the Pumping Engine house to the right of the camera. This was the showpiece of Consols mine which contained an 80″ engine. Regrettably the house was demolished when Wheal Jane were investigating the valley. The shaft here was one of the deepest on Consols, 300 Fathoms deep.

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Looking from the otherside of the Whim House, in the background is the extensive tailings dam of Mount Wellington Mine.

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Looking back at Davey’s Whim, in the background Taylor’s Shaft.

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The remains of Taylor’s Whim house, the Clock Tower is in the background.

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An elevated view of Taylor’s Engine house, the fenced shaft infront can be seen.

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A line of Granite Setts mark the line of the Redruth and Chasewater railway in the Wheal Maid Valley.

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Part of Consols, the Pumping Engine House of Cusvey Mine on Shear’s Shaft. Built in 1826 which makes it ones of the oldest in Cornwall, the engine here had a cylinder size of 70″.

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The remains of the Bob Wall of Garland’s Engine House on United Mines, built originally for an 85″ pumping engine.

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Eldon’s 34″Pumping Engine house United Mines. The engine here pumped water to cool the big pumping engines of United Mines.

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The Stamps Engine House of Gwennap United, built in 1900 to re-work dumps in the area.

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The best preserved remains of a Powder House in Cornwall, this one is one the Wheal Clifford section of United Mines.

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