South Crofty Mine Roskear Shaft Underground: I was lucky enough on my visits to the working South Crofty to get to see this underground section on three occasions. It was not always a good trip, once a camera packed up, another where I had no time to hang around. On the third occasion I had around 30 minutes to myself, which was time for an explore and a few images to be taken. It was a very interesting area, the shaft was breath taking with living history all around. It’s so difficult to believe it is all underwater now.
A cross section of the shaft, the sinking of Roskear Shaft was begun by the Dolcoath Company in 1923. After the closure of Dolcoath Mine in 1921, this was planned to be the focus of the New Dolcoath Mine. The circular, brick-lined, shaft was sunk by shaft sinkers from South Wales and eventually reached 2000 feet deep by late 1926. Levels at 1700, 1900 and 2000 feet intersected a number of lodes and some limited stoping was done on the Roskear Complex for wolfram and tin.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.1 – The gated entrance to the new shaft station area, the shaft indicator for the winder status is hanging from the roof.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.2 – This is the 2000ft Station on New Roskear Shaft South Crofty, the brick arches to the shaft can be clearly seen. Photography here was interesting as there was a gale blowing from the ventilation fans on the surface. The chains support a bridge over the shaft.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.3 – A wider view of the 2000ft Shaft Station, on the left of the image is the bay for the pumping engine.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.4 – A second image of the shaft station, to the left of the image are the remains of a small pumping engine which dates from the 1920’s.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.5 – A view of the pumping engine , the pipe in front was attached to the rising main which still worked its way up the shaft to the adit level.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.6 – A side on view of the engine remains.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.7 – The engine in its bay area.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.8 – An image of the engine showing a bit more detail, its a shame that this is now all under water, lost and forgotten.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.9 – Looking down the length of the engine bay.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.10 – The end of the rising main which led to the shaft.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.11 – A closer image of the fly-wheel.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.12 – An image of the bridge across the shaft, this was a suspended chain and timber bridge over a deep hole…..not frightening at all.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.13 – My guide on this occasion was James Pettett, this is an image of him crossing the shaft and climbing up a chain ladder into the level.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.14 – This image is looking up the shaft to surface 2000ft away, the guides for the installed cage winder can be seen. The shaft was brick lined to surface, that must have been an amazing achievement.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.15 – The disconnected rising main running up the shaft, the quality of the brickwork was amazing, and still in very good condition.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.16 – An image looking down the shaft which was 400 fathoms deep, the base of the cage guides can be seen. This had been deepend by South Crofty so the shaft reached the bottom working levels for the second way out.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.17 – This is James Pettett from the Ventilation Department taking air samples in the drive leading to the shaft. This was done to monitor the Radon Levels in the mine, and the quality of air movement around the workings.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.18 – This is James removing the planks from a ventilation door in the New Roskear Shaft section, these were used to control the flow of air around the mine.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.19 – When the cats away the mice will play. I was on my own for a while so I explored. I crossed the shaft into the “New Dolcoath Mine” for a shufty around. The ground was not good, with false floors long rotted through, I reached a small stope and had a chance to grab this image.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.20 – At the end of the drive the timberwork had all collapsed, the open stope was above, a big empty space that had been mined out.
South Crofty Mine Roskear Underground.21 – This is looking back down the drive to the main haulage route, the remains of a cousin jack chute can be seen on the left of the image.
South Crofty Mines Roskear Underground.22 – Most of the timber had collapsed in this section.
South Crofty Mines Roskear Underground.23 – A final image of the drive showing the extent of the very nasty timber supports, the would have been an awful lot of weight supported here.
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