Pool and Camborne Gallery, I was in Cornwall for Easter 2012 so I spent Good Friday enjoying the sun and wandering around Redruth and Camborne.
The images on this page are taken in and around Pool and Tuckingmill. Many show the South Crofty Mine workings and how the site dominated the local landscape. Also of interest are the buildings which belonged to the Bickford’s Safety Fuse Works at Roskear.
The impact of mining in this area is easy to see from the rows of miners cottages to the impressive industrial landscape. Sadly this is changing quickly, I have missed so much.
With the demolition of the South Crofty Mill and Ore Bins in late 2013 things look so very different now.
In 1830 William Bickford devised a way of sealing gunpowder within a core of twisted jute yarns. Sealed in Tar to make it waterproof this simple process produced the first Safety Fuse.
The patent was issued in September 1831, production started in Tuckingmill soon afterwards. The site on Pendarves Street was formally a foundry, it was purchased and rebuilt in 1910 when the company expanded.
So this simple invention revolutionised the use of explosives underground. The fuse was safe to use burning at a rate of 30 seconds per foot. This was the first time the miners had a reliable way of setting off charges.
I just wonder how many lives and injuries it saved.