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Monument record MDR8634 - Slack, Mount Pleasant and Barmasters Grove mines and rake, 390m south east of Blakelow Farm, Bonsall

Type and Period (8)

  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • ? (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)
  • (Elizabethan to Victorian - 1600 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

Area of mining, 17th to 18th century in date, adjacent to the east-west rake to the south. It contains a number of mines including Nether Slack, Upper Slack, Barmaster Grove, Scorah and Old Harry. Mentioned in Barmasters Records of 1744 when Scorah Founder describes it as 'old'. The area featured in development of early arguments of Pilkington and Whitehurst concerning genesis of lava and its relation to surrounding limestones. (1,2). An extensive area of mostly well-preserved hillocks on a series of small veins and pipe workings, with many capped shafts and surface features include several coes. (3). The monument was scheduled in January 2000 and includes the earthwork, buried, standing and rock cut remains of Slack, Mount Pleasant and Barmasters Grove lead mines 390m south east of Blakelow Farm. The monument is situated on Bonsall Moor, between Bonsall Lane and Tower Lane. Geologically, the monument lies to the north of the Great Bonsall Fault, with the lead veins running through gently folded limestone and lying at a stratigraphic horizon beneath the Matlock Lower Lava. Ore accounts dating from 1541 provide the earliest record of mining on Bonsall Moor but most of the surviving surface remains represent mining activity of the 18th and 19th centuries. In 1881 Slack Mine and the adjacent mines were bought by Edward Wass. The Derbyshire system of mining was largely based on local mining customs and consisted of individual groups of miners or small mining companies working relatively short lengths of the vein. The monument survives as a series of earthwork, buried, standing and rock cut remains which include several almost parallel veins and scrins. These are aligned roughly north to south and are marked by a series of hillocks (mounds of waste rock which either contain insufficient quantities of ore to warrant extraction, or waste from ore crushing activity) interspersed with the remains of mining shafts and open cuts (veins worked open to daylight). Slack Mine, which includes Nether Slack, Upper Slack and Scorah Slack, is situated on two parallel veins. At the northern end of the monument, in the area of Nether Slack, is a shaft which was documented in the late 18th century as being 50 fathoms deep. This has now partly collapsed but sits adjacent to a retaining wall and a coe, close to Bonsall Lane. Close to these remains is an ore processing area including a water channel and a buddling area where water was used to separate small sized ore from adhering dirt. Towards the southern end of the monument, in the vicinity of Scorah Slack, is a large shaft surrounded by a substantial coe with retaining walls. Similar remains characterise Mount Pleasant and Barmasters Grove mines which are situated in the eastern half of the protected area. Within the easternmost field are the remains of at least ten open shafts scattered along the lines of hillocks, hollows and deep open pit holes which mark the line of the lead veins. The individual mines are not marked by concentrated areas of activity but instead relate to stretches of the vein which were worked by different miners or groups of miners, a characteristic of the Derbyshire lead mining custom. (4). Site monitoring has been carried out and site appears not to be under threat. (5)

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Verbal communication: Anon. Personal communication. D.J. Rieuwerts, 18.3.1993.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Whitehurst. 1778. An Inquiry into the Original State and Formation of the Earth.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Barnatt, J. 2004. An Inventory of Regionally & Nationally Important Lead Mining Sites in the Peak District. Vol. 2: Corpus of Sites. p140, feature 102.
  • <4> Scheduling record: English Heritage. 2000. Scheduling Notification: Slack, Mount Pleasant and Barmasters Grove lead mines. Cat. No.: 468.
  • <5> Unpublished document: Marriott, J (PDNPA). 2011. Scheduled Monument Monitoring Form: Slack Mount Pleasant and Barmasters Grove lead mines.



Grid reference Centred SK 2579 5948 (118m by 321m) (Approximate)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR3233

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External Links (0)

Record last edited

Nov 12 2014 2:18PM

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