Wheal Coates Mine worked on and off from 1815-1914. During this time production was an overall total of: 335 tons Copper and 717 tons of Tin. Certainly the area was worked long before this with mining records dating back to 1692.
The impressive Pumping Engine House on Towanroath Shaft dates from 1872, it remained in work until 1885, housing a 36″ Engine. These years were the most busy for the mine, at its height 138 people were employed here. In a later re-working a new horizontal pumping engine was installed at the base of the house. This was used from 1911-1914, the foundations of which can still be clearly seen. Sadly this rework failed and the mine was finally closed.
Walk up the hill to the other remaining buildings that include a 24″ Stamps and an 18″ Whim Engine House. The site has been well stabilised in the 1970’s and 80’s by the National Trust. This is a great place to walk around, the site still retains its atmosphere and the views are amazing. There are also several other buildings on the site, the remains of a Calciner can be safely explored.
Wheal Coates is one of the most photographed mines in Cornwall, walking around you can understand why.
Wheal Coates Mine 1: This area is well known for the dramatic sea mists that flow in and cover the bay. This image was taken early on spring morning, the sea mist lapping on the top of the cliffs gives a ghostly feel to the photograph.
Wheal Coates Mine 2: The sea mist slowly covering the Engine House. Just visible in the background is the Bob Wall of Great Wheal Charlotte Mine.
Wheal Coates Mine 3: A view of the Engine House on from the path from Chapel Porth. The shaft here reached a final depth of 6oo Ft.
Wheal Coates Mine 4: Certainly the most iconic view of the 36″ Pumping Engine House on Towanroath Shaft perched on the cliff edge. The foundation for the horizontal pumping engine made at Tuckingmill Foundry which was used in the later re-working is in front of the house.
Wheal Coates Mine 5: A view of the Engine House from the path, the boiler house is on the left. At the rear the square flue leading to the chimney can be seen.
Wheal Coates Mine 6: A closer image of the front of the house showing the fine masonry used in the construction. The building was stabilised by the National Trust in 1970.
For more information on the site follow this link: National Trust
Wheal Coates Mine 7: An image of the 24″ Stamps Engine House.
Wheal Coates Mine 8: Looking across the Whim Engine foundations towards the Stamps House.
Wheal Coates Mine 9: The doorway to the Whim House. It held a 18″ cylinder all enclosed steam powered engine.
Wheal Coates Mine 10: The foundations for the Whim Engine, fine brickwork still remain in parts of the wall.
Wheal Coates Mine 11: An image of the mine area showing the Stamps and Whim Engines Houses. The chimney for the steam whim is on the right.
Wheal Coates Mine 12: An image of the Stamps Engine House looking through the gap where the sluice for the mine pond was mounted. The sea mist behind is obscuring the sea.
Wheal Coates Mine 13: So, a final view of the 24″ Stamps Engine House. On the right is one of the walls of the Whim House constructed in 1880.
Wheals Coates Mine 14: At low tide a walk along the beach from Chapel Porth shows the Towanroath Engine House in all its glory. The cliffs around here show many sites of mining activity. However, care should be taken as the tide here will come in very fast.