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Home > Mines, Quarries & Sites > Temple Lead Mine

Temple Lead Mine (United Kingdom)


Situate in the picturesque Rheidol Valley in mid Wales it is famous for the remains of a massive underground angle bob. This was actuated by a wire rope running through No. 1 Adit from a 40' x 4' waterwheel in a pit immediately outside the adit portal and built into the gorge on the one side. An iron take off from the crank of wheel actuated a timber bob mounted in the roof of No. 1 Adit just inside the portal. From here the wire rope ran through the adit for some distance to another roof mounded bob, and then iron flat rods, one of which can still be seen connected with the angle bob. Along the adit the sockets for twin horizontal stemples can be seen, these probably mounted pulley wheels for the wire rope.
There are three levels, the two upper ones cut the stope after a short distance so have been grilled for safety, as there is nothing to explore anyway.
Nos. 2 and 3 Adits - the higher two - were driven in 1877 as drifts along Pryce's Lode, like No. 1 just described. No. 2 replaced No. 1 as the main adit of Temple, and a long cross-cut was driven in 1880 northwards from near the forebreast, to cut the Champion Lode. This was supposedly a continuation of the great Van Lode, which had also been drifted in the Nant-y-Moch Adit driven a short distance north of No. 3. Upon cutting the Champion Lode in No. 2 - 36 feet wide - a drift west was started. It was in the long cross-cut and this drift that brand new compressed-air boring machinery was tested for the first time, and a large air-receiver dating from 1881 can still be seen in the adit today. The 40 foot wheelpit at the portal of No. 1 Adit drove the compressed-air machinery, as well as an inclined tramway which took dressed ore up to the top of the gorge to meet a packhorse trail from Ystumtuen.

No. 2 Adit was continued west for a short distance until being abandoned, due to the poorness of the Champion Lode. There has been a dispute over the years whether this adit ever connected with the extensive Bwlchgwyn Mine workings over the hill. Recent work in the adit has found what is almost certainly the collapsed forebreast of the drive, however two rises above the adit are choked with boulders and impossible to access. The mystery remains unsolved.
An impressive feature at the mine is an almost mile long leat bringing water down the gorge to the dressing floors; almost half of this leat had to be built up on one side using 1½ inch pitch pine, which was held up by iron rods driven into the rocks. This was due to the ravine being almost vertical in places.

Ioan Lord and Roy Fellows 2016

Photos of Temple Lead Mine

Photographs Of Temple
Photographs Of Temple (27 photos)
Last updated January 29th by Purp
Historic Photographs Of Temple
Historic Photographs Of Temple (0 photos)
Last updated September 26th 2007 by royfellows

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Documents for Temple Lead Mine

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