East Pool Mine

East Pool Mine dates its beginnings back to the early C18th when a small concern called “Pool Old Bal” worked a sett. This was leased by the Basset family up to the mid 1780’s.

East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.1 – The preserved Whim Engine house on Michell’s Shaft.The Boiler House is on the left, this was rebuilt by the National Trust during 1975.
The mine named East Pool began its life during 1834. Completely surrounded by large well established mines: South Crofty, Tincroft, Wheal Agar and Carn Brea. Its small sett was highly profitable, the shallow workings produced a high grade Copper Ore. This sold for almost twice the price achieved by other mines.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.2 – The engine is powered by an electric motor and works on a daily basis through the summer months. Built during 1887 by Holman Brothers this was the last beam whim to be installed in Cornwall. It was saved from scrap in 1941, since 1967 the National Trust took over the management.
Wheal Agar was the northern neighbour which had struggled to make a profit apart from a short period during the 1880’s. Wheal Agar eventually closed in 1895, the workings soon started to flood to a point where the East Pool system was threatened.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.3 – This image was taken late in the day to get the position of the sun right. This is my favourite image of the size of the flywheel can be clearly seen.
East Pool was the more profitable mine, from 1862 until the drop in Tin prices in 1894 good profits were returned. Also the dividends paid to the shareholders were often higher than those from Dolcoath. East Pool produced a variety of ores, apart from Tin and Copper significant amounts of Wolfram were discovered in the 1860’s along with Arsenic, Cobalt, Nickel and Uranium.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.4 – This is the “plug” doorway to the Whim Engine House. In front is the condenser for the engine, to the right is the axle of the flywheel.
After a period of negotiations East Pool finally purchased Agar Mine and associated equipment for £4,000 thus creating East Pool and Agar Mine in March 1897. The workings were eventually closed in 1945. However the impressive Beam Engine on Taylor’s Shaft continued to pump from South Crofty until electric pumps took over in September 1954.

In total the mines worked from 1835-1945, East Pool produced 88,3000 tons Copper, 38,490 tons Tin, 31,722 tons Arsenic and 2,820 tons of Wolfram. Wheal Agar produced 3,033 tons of Copper.

East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.5 – A second image of the Plug Doorway showing a bit more of the layout at the base of the Bob Wall.
The following pages show external and internal views of the two remaining preserved Engine Houses. Now managed by the National Trust they are open to the public on a regular basis throughout the year. All these images were taken in April 2012.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.6 – This image shows the pipes around the condenser with the flywheel in the background.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.7 – This image was taken with a 17mm lens. The extreme wide angle has allowed me to capture the flywheel, axle and the end of the beam.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.8 – A detailed image of the flywheel and winding crank.. When it was working the engine could wind at 1000ft per minute.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.9 – A wider image showing the complete flywheel surrounded by the stone mountings. The shaft here reached a final depth of 252 fathoms on the incline. During 1921 a major fall deep underground destroyed much of this and an adjoining shaft, this effected access to the lower levels.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.10 – Propped up outside the boiler house are the remains of several broken beams.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.11 – A closer look at of one of the beam fragments.
The following images on this page were taken inside the Winding Engine House. I was there just as it opened so I was the only one inside. So, this gave me an amazing opportunity to get some internal images without the worry of visitors in the way. I was able to use the flash quite happily, I think I got some good results.
My thanks go to the kind lady from the National Trust who made me a cup of coffee and biscuits. Also she and took an interest in what I was doing.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.12 – Access to the Engine House is through the Boiler House door. This is one of the first views inside the Boiler House which was rebuilt during 1975, the original was demolished after the mine closed.
The boiler is a single flue Cornish Type made by Ruston and Hornsby Ltd in 1926. It was reclaimed from the Poor Law Institution in Truro where it supplied steam for the laundry. When the mine was working there would have been two boilers powering the engine. Along with various tools stacked up in the background on the right is part of the steam feed pump for the boiler water.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.13 – The full front face of the single flue Cornish Boiler, it is amazingly ornate and functional.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.14 – The front of the Cornish Boiler showing the delicate water gauges.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.15 – The boiler stoke hole, for such a functional device the care and attention to detail is incredible.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.16 – The main Pressure Gauge on the boiler, the makers name can be seen clearly.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.17 – A more detailed image of one of the boilers Water Gauges.
Up the steps to the first floor, known as the Driving Floor.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.18 – Next to the driver’s position is the Steam Pressure Gauge, the code of shaft signals are from South Crofty Mine.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.19 – A closer image of the Steam Pressure Gauge.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.20 – This is the Engine Driver’s position, operating handle and brake.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.21 – The first floor of the Engine House was known as the driving floor. The image is of the engine cylinder encased in bricks to conserve the heat.
East Pool Mine
East Pool Mine.22 – A valve and control handle on the side of the cylinder.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 23 – This image is taken looking up at the Middle Chamber of the Engine House, the cylinder is in the bottom of the photograph.
Moving up the stairs to the Middle Chamber. This is where the top of the cylinder and the piston are to be found.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 24 – Here is the top of the 30″ cylinder. The engine valves and the piston are attached to the parallel motion arms.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 25 – The cylinder and piston from the opposite side.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 26 – A detailed image of the ornate oil feeder on the top of the cylinder.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 27 – A wider view of the Middle Chamber, the staircase going up to the Top Chamber in the background.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 28 – The top of the 30″ cylinder, also the valve gear is behind the piston.
East Pool Mine
Cornish MIne Images 29 – Finally a view of the Middle Chamber looking down from the staircase.
The next set of images were taken on the top floor of the engine house. The home of the Beam.
Cornish MIne Images
Cornish MIne Images 30 – This is the staircase from the Middle to Top Chamber, I on the top floor looking down, it is wonderful to imagine walking up these when the engine was at work.
Cornish MIne Images
Cornish MIne Images 31 – In the Top Chamber of the Engine house is the Beam. This is the hand windlass, used for lifting heavy machinery during repairs.
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Cornish MIne Images 32 – The winch from the opposite side.
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Cornish MIne Images 33 – The beam is enclosed to prevent any injury.
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Cornish MIne Images.34 – A closeup of the designers name on the indoor part of the beam.
Moving outdoors to the Bob Plat, this was where the outdoor part of the beam could be maintained. It also allows for great views of the surrounding area.
Cornish MIne Images
Cornish MIne Images 35 – The makers name is clearly seen on the beam, in the background is Carn Brea.
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Cornish MIne Images 36 – The beam on the outside of the Engine House, the designers name is on this side. In the background is Taylor’s Pumping Engine House.
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Cornish MIne Images 37 – A clearer image of the Engine House belonging to Taylor’s Shaft.
The Processing Plant for the Mine was located in the Tolvaddon Valley through which the Red River flowed. The ore was transported from the mine to here by a mineral tramway which operated until 1934. After the closure an aerial rope way was used until the mine finally closed during 1945. There are still extensive remains in the valley, although much is now fenced off.
The images below were taken during the mid 1990’s before the site became too overgrown.
Cornish MIne Images
Cornish MIne Images 38 – The Stamps Engine House in Tolvaddon Valley, the loadings for the flywheel and crankshaft are in front of the house.
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Cornish MIne Images 39 – The house contained a 24″ Stamps Engine.
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Cornish MIne Images 40 – The mounting bolts are still in place on the loadings, this drove a total of 32 heads of stamps.
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Cornish MIne Images 41 – Spoil heaps, settling tanks litter the valley bottom, the Red River is flowing in the foreground.
Cornish MIne Images
Cornish MIne Images 42 – A second image of the valley bottom showing the remaining chimney, other stacks were demolished in the 1970’s.

East Pool and Agar Mine

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