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Monument record MDR3835 - Wheels Rake wheel house and Shining Sough drainage level, Harthill Hall, River Lathkill, Harthill

Type and Period (3)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

Masonry-lined wheel house for water wheel used to unwater Wheel's Rake. It is in a reasonable condition. All the other powered drainage in the Alport area in the late 18th century was done by water pressure engines. Below it is a shaft from which water was pumped. A pump rod is still in situ. There may be a drained wheels rake to the north west. The Shining sough runs south-west, draining the mine generally served by Alport sough. It was started in 1756 and there is no record of driving after March 1776. It was driven mainly through solid limestone and possibly some shale at the forefield. There are coffin levels and some bore holes from drilling. It is mostly hand dressed with clear pick marks. The veins in the sough tithe began producing ore 1769. This sough was rendered ineffective as a drainage level by Hillcar sough in about 1790. (2,5) Draining level: the sough started to drain lead mines in the Alport field in 1756. It passed through Broadmeadow for about a mile, terminating near Pienet Nest Shaft. Shining Sough is driven through limestone, some of it is coffin-shaped and mostly hand-dressed. There are a few drill holes. It was effectively replaced by the Hillcarr Sough, which was started in 1766 and completed in 1787. (3,4,6) Although it may have still been in use in 1839 when the tithes of all the mines owned by Hillcarr Sough, Shining Sough and Blythe Mines were consolidated to form Alport Mining Company. Today, Wheel's Rake runs north-west to south-east close to Lawn's Lane junction. The mound and arched opening of Wheel Shaft on Wheel's Rake are still visible. The masonry structure in this mound housed a water-wheel working pumps which raised water from the 192 feet deep shaft and discharged it into a level running via Thornhill Sough into Hillcarr Sough. Work here is thought to have stopped in 1851 but in the northward extension of Wheel's Rake across the river, work continued until the 1880s. On the opposite side of the river to Wheel's Rake is Shining Bank. (4) Wheels Rake Mine and Shining Sough. The main feature of interest is a well-preserved walled-pit with an arched roof, at a shaft top, which once held a large balance bob (not a water wheel as previously stated). This pit is set within a damaged hillock. The balance bob was once attached via flat rods to a large documented waterwheel use for mine pumping and winding, the wheel pit of which is now no longer apparent; presumably lower parts remain buried on site. Adjacent to the balance bob pit there is a scrin working that gives access to Shining Sough (currently flooded). Upstream from the pit there is a surviving head-race leat for the waterwheel, leading from a substantial reservoir dam across the river, parts of which survive (in part removed in the 20th century when a pipeline was laid down the valley). (9)

Sources/Archives (9)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Kirkham, N. 1964. Wheels Rake, Alport by Youlgreave. Vol.2.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Hill, R (PPJPB). 1985. Peak Park Treasures. Rieuwerts,J, 09/01/1970, C34.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Bulletin of the Peak District Mines Historical Society. Willies, L, 19/01/1970.
  • <4> Bibliographic reference: Ford, T & Rieuwerts, J. 1983. Lead Mining in the Peak District, 3rd edition. pp 80-83,87,89.
  • <5> Bibliographic reference: Rieuwerts, J. 1987. Lead Mine Soughs of Derbyshire. pp 12,59,62.
  • <6> Index: North Derbyshire Archaeological Trust (NDAT). North Derbyshire Archaeological Trust Index. 1050.
  • <7> Index: Council for British Archaeology (CBA). CBA Industrial Archaeology Report Card. Wheels rake wheel house.
  • <8> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1896-1900. OS County Series, 2nd edition (1st revision), scale 1:2500 (c. 25" to one mile). Derbyshire XXVIII.8.
  • <9> Bibliographic reference: Barnatt, J. 2004. An Inventory of Regionally & Nationally Important Lead Mining Sites in the Peak District. Vol. 1: Context, Inventory, Summary & Analyses. N178 (previously B16), illus.



Grid reference Centred SK 22781 64863 (119m by 84m)

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Record last edited

May 20 2015 8:49AM

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