Mining Features Gallery

These images will help you understand your report:



An adit is usually a drainage tunnel driven horizontally into a hillside at a low point. This allowed the pumping effort to be minimised and sometimes doubled as a "tramming level" for transporting ore, or a "manway" for access. 

Adit systems can be hugely extensive and the biggest, The County Adit, comprises 29 miles of tunnel and drained the Gwennap/Scorrier/Redruth area. Other large systems are under Pool/Camborne.

Since blasting and tramming were expensive, levels were kept small and most are usually about 5x2ft. Some are driven in hard rock and some are driven along a mineral 'lode' or soft ground and require timbering. Blocked adits can cause problems with drainage.


When people think of mine workings, they think often think of shafts. Shafts were the access points of the mine and vary in size according to what their function was. Some "engine shafts" had the mine's pumping equipment, some "whim shafts" were for winding the mine's ore out and some were "footways" which contained ladders for the men.

Some shafts carried out more than one function. Older shafts tend to be smaller and tend to follow the dip of the lode. Some shafts have been filled up, some were capped by the mine on abandonment and some had big wooden beams installed, then a cover and were backfilled to surface. These can suddenly open up.


Where a mineral lode was found, mining removed the mineral for processing. This leaves voids which are called stopes.

These are commonly nearly vertical, but can be flatter. They can vary in width from a few inches to many meters. Sometimes they are backfilled with loose material, sometimes they are open. Often, layers of waste sits on timber platforms called "stullwork". Where the lode comes to the surface, there may be "openworks" where the lode material has been removed.

This leaves pits of various dimensions.Where miners were looking for a lode, they often dug pits called "Costean Pits" which may have the surface appearance of a filled shaft.

Company Number: 08711097.

OS Licence Number : 100056616