Wheal Peevor Mine

This page covers both West Peevor and the Wheal Peevor Mine site.
In total there are five surviving engine houses in a relatively small area, the Peevor Mine site is adjacent to the A30 and is a familiar landmark to passing motorists.
The main site was reclaimed and stabilised during 2005-2007, the engine houses received much needed structural restoration, however the underground access to a major site was lost.
The images on this page are ordered as if the viewer was walking up the valley from the west to main site, all these images were taken between 1996-1999.

West Peevor Mine 1

An image taken from the pumping house on Mitchell’s Shaft of West Peevor Mine looking towards the Stamps House.

West Peevor Mine is situated in the valley below Wheal Peevor. The two engine houses on the site were erected in 1882: a 50″ Pumping Engine on Mitchell’s Shaft and a 22″ Stamps Engine, there was also a winding house but only the base survives somewhere in the gorse. The site was closed in 1887.
The story was not over, during the 1960’s the mine was re-investigated in an effort to intersect the Wheal Peevor lodes. During this process a concrete plinth was erected in front of the engine house to mount an electric hoist, also the building was reduced in size. After a favorable drilling programme the shaft was re-opened and investigated to a depth of 170ft. At this point the miners found a shaft blockage which proved impossible to shift, subsequently the shaft was capped and the project was abandoned.

West Peevor Mine 2

The 22″ Stamps Engine House of West Peevor, the majority of the wing wall has collapsed with the remaining blocks ready to go.

West Peevor Mine 3

An image of the other side of the house also showing the bad condition of the brickwork.

West Peevor Mine 4

An image of one of the surviving secondary buildings at West Peevor Mine.

West Peevor Mine 5

Looking across the site towards the three engine houses at Wheal Peevor Mine.

West Peevor Mine 6

A second building at West Peevor Mine, possibly a Smithy.

West Peevor Mine 7

A second image of the same building, in the background is the remains of one of the mine’s Calciners.

West Peevor Mine 8

A view of the 50″ Pumping Engine House on Mitchell’s Shaft, the plinth built for the re-working is in the foreground.

Wheal Peevor Mine 1

Walking up the valley from West Peevor this is the first clear view of the three engine house survival of Wheal Peevor, possibly the best remaining in Cornwall. From left to right; Stamps, Pumping and Whim Houses, the latter two were always at right angles to each other across the main shaft

The original Wheal Peevor Mine dates back to the 18th Century when the site was worked as part of Great North Downs Mine producing Copper from shallow deposits.
The mine proper started in 1872 with the erection of the remains we see today. The underground workings were concentrated at around 40 Fathoms below adit level on a rich lode of Tin which assayed at around 4% Tin. The usual recovery was 1.5% this kept the mine in profit. The two calciners were also built on the site to process Arsenic which was a valuable by-product.

Wheal Peevor Mine 2

The first close view of the calciners walking up the valley.

Wheal Peevor Mine 3

Looking across one of the Calciners to the chimney that served them.

Wheal Peevor Mine 4

One of the buddles at Peevor used to concentrate the Tin material.

Wheal Peevor Mine 5

Another image of one of the mine calciners.

Wheal Peevor Mine 6

The house for the 32″ Stamps Engine, the mountings for the 48 heads of Californian Stamps can be seen in front of the house.

Wheal Peevor Mine 7

Walking on the path past the Stamps House gives a good view of the 70″ Pumping Engine House on Sir Frederick’s Shaft.

Wheal Peevor Mine 8

An image of the engine house on Sir Frederick’s Shaft.

Wheal Peevor Mine 9

Looking across the open shaft towards the 18″ Whim Engine House.

Wheal Peevor Mine 10

When the site was stabilised the shaft was made safe and grilled over.

Wheal Peevor Mine 11

The remarkable survival of the boiler house arch at Sir Frederick’s Shaft Wheal Peevor.

Wheal Peevor Mine 12

An image of Sir Frederick’s Shaft Engine House from the front, the Whim House is in the background. The front wall shows the sad condition of the stonework before the stabilisation.

Wheal Peevor Mine 13

My favorite image, the view of the engine houses framed by the calciner.

Both the mines were abandoned in 1887 due the low price of Tin. During its lifetime the mine produced 3,280 Tons of Tin. The site then lay idle until 1912 when there was a plan to mine Wolfram which was believed to be present, this attempt was abandoned after the end of the First World War.

The Last Cornish Mines