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Hoorah!  My conference requirements for 2012 are now over, and I can now concentrate on being a writer again!!

I didn't really learn much that was new today, but it was a great refresher course which put various disparate bits of knowledge together that I've accumulated over the past couple of decades (!).  The conference was held in the Burrell Collection, hosted by Glasgow Archaeological Society and dedicated to The Clyde.  It was mainly modern in its subject matter - with much said about the improvement of the river, and the history of the mercantile and industrial centres on its banks - Glasgow, Greenock, Port Glasgow, but there were a couple of papers on earlier aspects, such as crannogs.

I had my writer's hat on for one particular paper dedicated to Dumbarton Castle, which features in Novel #2.  Guess I'll have to do a bit of rewriting now, as it doesn't seem to be laid out the way I'd anticipated.  Ah, well.  These things are sent to try us. 

But after seeing endless views of Dumbarton Castle from land, from sea, and from the air,  there's no excuse for my not returning to those missing pages of MS I've been bewailing over the last couple of weeks, because - you've guessed it!!- they feature none other than Dumbarton Castle!!!

Must put nose to grindstone... Must put nose to grindstone....
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I heard today that I've had the go-ahead to get my Mr Telford/Mr Watt paper spruced up & polished and sent off to journal, so to celebrate, I thought I'd post some pretty pictures of a Boulton & Watt steam engine.

This is Crofton, which houses not one but two working steam engines, installed here to pump water into the Avon & Kennet Canal to maintain water levels.  A view, first of all, of the engine house:-


Unfortunately, we arrived three days too late to see the engines actually working.  But evidence of their labours was still apparent: the boiler which powered them was still burbling happily to itself during our visit.  Evidently, it has to be fired up a couple of days prior to the 'steaming', and it takes another three days to cool down afterwards...

One of the engines had its 200th anniversary this year.  It's a Boulton & Watt engine, which survives in excellent condition. It's interesting to see it sitting side by side with a younger engine: the B & W one seems quite chunky and clunky when compared with its younger companion:-




Being a Boulton & Watt engine, it of course bears its Boulton & Watt serial number 'B.42':-


So for all you fans of industrial archaeology out there, enjoy!  Unfortunately, it's far too late for me to start wittering on about how steam engines operate, and I'm still trying to get my head round the modus operandi myself...

And besides, Neil Oliver's currently demolishing the cute & cuddly reputation that the Vikings have been enjoying over the past few decades, so I guess I'd better stop typing and pay attention, hadn't I?
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I have returned.  Our holiday was excellent, though at times it seriously felt as if The Powers That Be really can't be bothered to promote tourism in England.  Over the last few years, the little tourist information centres that proliferated in the market towns and which were a Godsend for vistors have all been closed, and if it hadn't been for a bit of detective work and dedication on our part, we wouldn't even have picked this destination.

What's even more depressing was the number of people who said to us, "Oh, so you're on holiday in Wantage.  You must be visiting family then."  And when we responded with 'well, no, we're here to SEE the place,' they'd just blink and go, 'Oh! That's interesting. What on earth made you come here?'


Here's a photo.  Sadly, I haven't done the market place in Wantage much justice because it was raining a lot of the time, and on the days when the sun came out, it was full of random people who cluttered up the views as if they owned the place (which they probably did!!).  I'm sorry about the lack of images, because the place, though filled with modern 19th century shopfronts, was very picturesque:-

Anyway, here, listed below, are my Reasons for Picking Wantage as a Holiday Destination (not arranged in any particular order...):-

1) It has connections with King Alfred.

2) It has connections with John Betjemen.

3) It's within easy travelling distance of the Vale of the White Horse. 

4) There's loads of brilliant (and not too strenuous!) walking in and around the town.

5) They have a second hand bookshop that is seriously TO DIE FOR!!  It's not just colossal, it's completely labyrinthine (literally) with a history/archaeology section that's mind-boggingly vast.  The variety is combined with really modest prices. I bought about eighteen books for fifty quid, for heaven's sake, and we're talking big academic tomes here, not pamphlets!

6) A plentiful supply of red kites.  We walked two consecutive days, and spotted kites on both days.  Which was an unexpected bonus...

7) Plenty of hostelries which serve good food and decent beer. Plus a delicatessan called Umami's where the staff are lovely, the food is delicious and there's space to chill out with some tasty grub.

8) Lastly, there is The Shoulder of Mutton.  We were recommended this place as a good option for veggie dining.  We were nonplussed at first, because it just seemed like a regular pub, and it was quite hard to actually get a table (probably a sign of how popular it is!). Turned out the recommendation was the understatement of the century - despite an unappetising inn-sign featuring a butcher hacking up a flayed sheep haunch (well, it is the Shoulder of Mutton!) the menu was veggie heaven!  Not a dead sheep in sight, and oh, boy, I could  have munched my way through the menu for a week and still have been trying different things.  Okay, so things were a little chaotic at times, because the chef is clearly a one-man-band who loves what he's doing and cooks for the sheer pleasure of it, but...  How can I possibly extol the virtues of the spicy red lentil and carrot flan????  Having been 98% veggie for the last twenty four years, I've had my fair share of lentil flans, but...  This has to be the queen of flans.  If I were Rabbie Burns, I'd write a poem extolling its virtues.

Oh, and according to J, its selection of real ales was mighty good, too.  And the prices were really, really modest. 
So yeah, a bit off the beaten track, perhaps, but with much to recommend it.  The monuments were excellent, too: beam engines, Neolithic chambered tombs, hill forts and a certain white horse....

There are photos, of course.  Which I will share with you soon!
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Some more industrial  archaeology now, and...  Was this photograph REALLY taken in Scotland?????  It seems like an eternity since the weather was that good...

Now here's a question. What do you do with a disused slate quarry?  Well, in the old days, it probably would have remained an 'eyesore' (everything's relative, I suppose), despised by all and sundry, locked away from casual inspection and re-used as the local unofficial rubbish tip, too. 

Instead, it's been reinvented as a community woodland/heritage trail type thingy which is well-loved by ducks, photography and visiting archaeologists.

The scenic backdrop can't be faulted:-

And what exactly IS the depth of that pool?  I for one, wouldn't like to find out... 

I'm just glad I didn't meet any strange black horses grazing by the edge. [Remember, if you're in highland Scotland, and you see a strange black horse grazing by a body of water, always act very polite and say HELLO!  In case it's a kelpie, because they don't much like being ignored... Oh, and don't try jumping onto it, either, or it might just take you straight to a watery grave...]

The old working faces of the quarry are still visible in places.  Industrial sites like this really took off in the wake of the agricultural improvements, when farming practices became more effective and less labour was needed on the land.  In this part of the world, tenant farmers were often imported from lowland Scotland to implement the new methods in the north, rendering the existing population, who eked out a virtually subsistance lifestyle on the land and lived in dispersed settlements known as townships.

Contrary to popular belief, most reasonable landowners were reluctant to kick tenants off the land without so much as a by-your-leave and send them packing straight onto the nearest ship to America.  Many tried hard to create alternative employment, encouraging the fishing industry, developing mining and quarrying on their lands, or introducing more obscure industries like kelp-burning.  Of course, this creation of new employment opportunities had its roots in self-interest: you can't exactly find the money to build yourself a fine Georgian house when your tenants can barely scrape together enough money to pay the rent in a good year...

Men like Thomas Telford were keen to promote the advantages of these rural industries - big Tam T had more reason than most to support these schemes, as he'd benefitted from similar enterprises in his early years.  He's a classic case of a Scottish self-made man: he was brought up by his mother in a pokey little cottage in deepest, darkest Dumfriesshire: after working damned hard at school, he became an apprentice stonemason.  After running away from his first placement because of unreasonable treatment,  he worked his way up the ranks, teaching himself the principles of engineering and architecture, before eventually becoming the first president of the Institute of Civil Engineers.

A lot of these industrial enterprises remained active throughout much of the nineteenth and well into the twentieth century.  This particular quarry remained in use until the 1950s, and ghosts of its past use still survive.  This big block of slate still has evidence of plug-and-feathering - holes were hammered into the blocks of slate at regularly spaced intervals (occasionally small explosive charges helped it on its way...) until the rock split along the plane giving the neat sheets of slate that can be cut to an appropriate size for roofing tiles:-

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Okay, after a slight hiccup in posting, here's the finished version!!!

A bit of industrial archaeology now...

Our recent trip up north took us home via the island of Seil, where we hoped to find accomodation. Unfortunately, there was scarcely a B & B to found there, so we ended up exploring Kilmelford.

We found a lovely place to stay, a Georgian building which was once attached to a former gunpowder works, much of which has now been restored as a leisure/up-market holiday complex.  Information relating to this complex is sketchy, to say the least - the CANMORE entry is miminalist, unfortunately, so I'm going to have to rake through my memory and try and recollect what I read in the RCAHMS Lorn volume, which had a marvellous write-up of the site.

The gunpowder works were established in the late nineteenth century, and operations ceased in 1877, I think it was, after an explosion caused substantial damage to the infrastructure (can't remember if there were any recorded casualties - I'd be surprised if there weren't...). The owners also had links with the Bonawe Ironworks, if I remember right. 

The site was devoted to the production of gunpowder, which - as any industrial archaeologist with an interest in munitions or artillery can tell you - is a combination of charcoal, saltpetre and sulphur. 

All powder mills - whatever the age - have similar elements.  Areas where raw materials are received, areas where the component ingredients are mixed and transformed into the finished product, and areas where the finished product is stored prior to being sent out to the consumer.  The processing buildings often include incorporating mills, grinding mills, etcetera, which in many cases use machinery similar to that seen in any other industrial building, particularly those involved in large scale food/drink production.  But the dead giveaway is the use of copper instead of iron in the metalwork (no sparks, you see), and the presence of blast banks/blast walls around the buildings where the explosive materials are handled and stored.

The modern holiday complex occupies the area of the service buildings - manager's house, worker's houses, stables, stores, supply stores.  Spotting the new builds amongst the earlier structures is quite tricky, because everything's been restored so nicely!  When I first snooped around this place, I didn't know about the powder works, and I was perplexed.  I knew this wasn't a farmsteading - it was too big.  But there was nothing explicitly industrial that leapt out at me, and the possibility that this was once a gunpowder works just didn't cross my mind:-

The process buildings (or what's left of them...)  are located further up the hillside behind the service area. They sit on the edge of a narrow gorge, and they're serviced by a lade which allowed the milling mechanisms to be run by water power.  At the lower end of this complex, these ruins can be seen:-


Now, this looks like an engine house to me, but coal-fired steam engines and explosives do not good bedfellows make (understatement here, methinks!), so what the heck's it doing here?  So my assumption is that this is actually a pumphouse, assisting in the circulation of water from in and around the mill buildings.

Further up the hill, there are a number of isolated buildings like that pictured below.  I think it may be a magazine, as it's very small and very simple, with not much room for manouevre and no traces of any machinery:-

And then there's mysterious set of footings in its sunken setting, which must surely be one of the processing houses:-

It's a brilliant site, and well worth a detailed exploration, but unfortunately not much is known about it at present.  Now, if I could only get out there for a week with the Great Surveyor and the Leica EDM (staying in that lovely B & B and eating slap-up meals in the rather tasty on-site restaurant in the holiday complex each night...) and spend another couple of weeks researching the company in the archives, then I might have a whole lot more to tell you.

Ah, dream on....


Jun. 29th, 2012 06:11 pm
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I'm meant to be cooking dinner now, so I shall leave you with some pretty bridges from our recent tour of Argyll and Glencoe.

To the iconic Atlantic Bridge, first of all, which connects the island of Seil with the mainland, and which technically speaking crosses part of the Atlantic Ocean.

I always thought this was a Telford-designed bridge (yah!  Mr T!  My hero!!!). But evidently not.  It predates Mr Telford's work by a good few decades, and I suppose on reflection that it really looks its age, with its high 'bascule' shape which seems oddly reminiscent of medieval bridges like the Old Bridge of Doon in Alloway or (the new!) Stirling Bridge:-

It's a very pretty bridge, though driving over it can be a wee bit hairy, because you haven't a clue if another motorist is coming straight for you until you crest that central span...

And now a bridge of a very different kind.  The handsome Ballahulish Bridge, of iron girder construction, and considerably later (early twentieth century) in date:-

There are a few bridges missing from this bridge-roundup of western Scotland.  The Connel bridge is definitely worth a second glance, and then there are a couple of stunning bridges in and around Inverary (which may in fact be Telford-built- I'll have to check this out at some point and maybe take a closer look at Inverary, full stop, as its Georgian architecture is very fine!).

Of course, any bridge looks a hundred times nicer when the sun shines, and when we came across these two, we were  extermely lucky in the weather.  I suppose these photos are proof that we actually had a summer, if only for a week or so...
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It's over.  The next installment of the Grand Tour has been and gone, I have returned, etcetera.

Carcassone certainly lived up to expectations.  I'd wanted to see it ever since I saw the walled city featured in a Tour de France stage, and though it did bear more than a fleeting resemblance to Lord Farquhar's place in Shrek, it was well worth a detailed exploration.  Its critics may deride it as a tourist trap and a medieval theme park, but there's more to the place than meets the eye, I'm pleased to say.

The highpoints of the holiday?  Apart from the monuments, that is...  Well, the French people themselves were great - very kind, very hospitable and remarkably tolerant of my ham-fisted attempts to murder their language.  The food deserves a special mention, too, especially the pastries, the crepes, and the ice cream.  Faced with a seemingly endless supply of French onion soup, pizzas (often with added goats' cheese, which my system just can't handle...) and omelettes, I baled out of my regular vegetarian diet virtually immediately, I regret to say.  The ducks of Languedoc will hate me for partaking of the famous cassoulet, but when in France, do what the French do, I suppose...

And the drawbacks?  The dog poo.  Definitely the dog poo.  Dog poo EVERYWHERE.  Closely followed by the toilets, which weren't the greatest (though these were nothing compared to toilets which stalked my childhood nightmares of French holidays, comprising nothing more than a ceramic tray with a hole in the floor.  SHUDDER!!).  And coming in a close third were the motorists, who were even more idiotic and insane than the ones back home.

Once again, I have done my utmost to seek out the best of what the area has to offer in terms of ancient buildings, monuments, and to take copious photographs for your delectation.  Since I have some grasp of the lingo (albeit a pathetic one!) I've been able to travel off the beaten track to some degree, so I hope I'll be able to give you an insight into the less well-known sites and monuments.  The quality of the built heritage was incredible.  In my week-and-a-bit trip, I managed to tick off the following:-
1 medieval walled city
5 fortified towns/villages
At least 13 cathedrals/abbeys/churches/chapels etc. (I lost count!!)
8 medieval castles
Lots and lots of carved stones - Roman & medieval.
A canal
And a Neolithic earthen long barrow.

We also visited a rather spectacular cave, which I think I can safely describe as another site because it produced finds of Late Bronze Age metalwork...

Anyway, I suppose it's my duty to give out the regular endlessrarities heritage awards.  The top three choices were really, really, really difficult, because everything I visited was utterly spectacular, and I was pleasantly surprised (if not astounded!) by what I saw at every turn.  But here we go:-

1) In first place, the medieval walled city of Carcassone.  Why?  Because it's just so big, so vast, and as much a testament to the ambitions of the 19th century antiquarian who made its reconstruction his lifelong goal as it is a reflection of Cathar and French architecture. 

2) The painted medieval ceilings of Lagrasse.  And in fact the painted medieval ceilings, full stop.  Because they appear to be everywhere.

3) The abbey of San-Papoul.  Which was full of magnificent in situ Romanesque carvings. I've had to tie this particular monument with the abbey of Lagrasse, which has a beautifully preserved medieval chapel, complete with tiled floor and painted walls.  I was completely bowled over by both...

Honourable Mentions must go to the castles of Lastours, the abbey of Villalangue, the basilica of Saint Nazaire in Carcassone and Narbonne Cathedral and Bishop's Palace.  With a special award for The Most Seriously Whacky Spaced Out Heritage Exhibition Ever Encountered By This Author going to the Lapidiary Museum in Narbonne for a display and associated sons-et-lumiere show which had me completely bamboozled.  Put it this way: the only other instance where I've felt so completely disorientated was climbing the stairs the Leaning Tower of Pisa...

Anyway, it will be my great delight to share my adventures with you all in the weeks that follows.  In the meantime, here are some pictures of the medieval city of Carcassone to whet your appetites:-

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Some gratuitous photographs of the fells now, before I leave Grasmere....

Obviously, we had plenty of photo opportunities in the course of our walk.  Here's a suitably bleak view across the later reaches of Stone Arthur towards Gibson Knott, Calf Crag and (I think!) Ullscarf in the background:

A similar view, but this time with an interesting tree in the foreground:-

And lastly, a piece of nineteenth century industrial archaeology.  Wainwright would no doubt describe it as an eyesore, because I don't think he had much time for industrial archaeology, but naturally I spotted it and went "ooh!  Look!!  A nineteenth century aqueduct!"

And tomorrow I'll be featuring Hardknott Roman fort, which for the very dozy and inattentive, was the subject of my earlier 'Guess the site' feature... 
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I spent today writing the first of my two Glasgow Water Works papers.  The aim was to finish the shorter of the two papers today: I almost managed it - but at 16.45, I found myself having to get ready for horse-riding.  I had one paragraph to go, and I really, really wanted to finish it but...  I decided to bow out gracefully instead.  As it was, my Microsoft Word decided to misbehave by refusing to shut down, so I was very nearly late.

I did get distracted a couple of times.  I took some time out to read a little bit more about Thomas Telford. Today,  I encountered Thomas Telford the archaeologist (he evidently scraped around a bit in Wroxeter Roman city during his time in Shrewsbury), Thomas Telford the poet (apparently!!), I learned that Mr T was known by his friends by the eminently Scottish name of 'Tam', and that he is buried in Westminster abbey.  I also cam across another tantalising glimpse of the animosity between Telford and John Rennie, with Rennie refusing point blank to work with Telford on a canal job in Scotland, at around the same time as Telford was complaining to James Watt about Mr Rennie's apparent fall-out with him.  But I still can't get to the bottom of the disagreement, though I suspect it may have something to do with the Ardossan canal...

Anyway...  I did get to horse-riding, and Diva was full of va-va-voom throughout.  Then my Pony Club Ma'am Instructress decided that Diva's girth was too slack, and pulled it up a couple of holes, and suddenly Diva decided that she was going to belt around the school like a moron.  Was it something to do with the tight girth? I don't really know.  But she was quite a handful.  We concentrated on trot tonight, but managed to get a left canter on the right rein once again before the end of the lesson.  And yes, she is definitely getting fitter.

I now feel like a stuffed toy who's been put through a mangle.  After last night's workout and today's horse-riding, I'm shattered!

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Or...  Alternative Title # 1: Mincing Around on the River...

Or... Alternative Title # 2: Sundogs Over Mauchline...

I got called out to the weir today.  The water levels were way down.  Which meant that the ground was lacking the ankle deep running water that was a feature of the previous instead.  Instead, I found myself confronting a mass of sheet black ice. 

On a sloping spillway, this isn't much fun, believe me...

The area I was summoned to record lay three quarters of the way across the weir.  Which meant I had to pick my delicate way across this icy wasteland in order to get to the voids that I was supposed to be recording.  It was, um, interesting.  One particular section was so dodgy that I bummed my way up the weir to photograph it rather than risk standing up then promptly sliding back down again with camera in tow.

Thankfully, I didn't manage to fall over this time.  I minced my way back across the black ice again, and made it to terra firma safely, and while I didn't feel like it was an unusual kind of day, by 3 pm I'd suffered a complete energy crash.  I presume I'd got so cold in the three hours I spent out in the Great Outdoors drawing and photographing 19th century timbers that I just wound up knackered.  I'm still knackered, even after a hot bath (complete with a Lush Phoenix Rising bath bomb - Nice!!).

It was a fascinating stint of recording, mind.  And the sundogs were brilliant.  You can't beat a good sundog...

I should really watch Restoration Man tonight, because one of my charges is featured on it today (I didn't make it onto the television programme, thank goodness!!).  But to be honest, I;m a bit knackered, and I think I'd rather settle down with an episode of Taggart....
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It's been a while since I featured my 'View From The Office' slot - which just goes to show how desk-based my work has been just recently (huzzah!!)...

Today, I'm delighted to continue the tradition.  Here, then, is my View not From The Office, but Of The Office.

And a close-up of today's target monument, the late 18th century (with mid-19th century modifications) crib-and-plank weir.  No, it's not me teetering on the brink in that photo, though I did take a stroll across the thing before the works began.

 I've never given much thought to weir construction before, but I was much impressed by this particular beast.  The upper portion of the spillway (tee hee - a technical term!!) was slabbed with massive sandstone setts shaped like railway sleepers, and interspersed with the original timber frames for each of the 'cribs' which make up the weir.  Think of it as an early gabion - instead of the hardcore being placed within a wire basket, it gets placed within a wooden box...

I'm delighted to report that no historic timbers were injured during today's works, which seems remarkable, considering that they were very poorly preserved and hanging in place by the skin of their teeth.  No archaeologists were hurt either - though I did manage to slip and fall and get myself a rather damp bahookie...  I'd minced my way successfully over the sandstone setts and concrete repairs (which both sloped intimidatingly) but when I ventured onto the lower whinstone apron (which is flat), I upended myself.  Whinstone is like black ice when wet - as visitors to Fingal's Cave will no doubt testify...

But the camera survived, and I survived, and I'm hoping the construction crew were too busy footering with the pumps to notice my debacle...

Anyway, here's a view of the sluice system which carries the river water into the lades and holding ponds (also called voes) which once powered the Catrine Mills.  The arched culvert is particularly nice, and I believe it's part of the late 18th century infrastructure:-

And here's a close-up of the sluice gates.  The timber gates are modern, but the the iron shaft to the rear is nineteenth century.  It once formed part of a regulating system which adjusted according to the strength of the flow, protecting the lades and the mill wheels from surges:-

I  hope you like it!  I had a ball, and I'll be out again before the end of the week to watch them dig another hole.  And next time, I'll be looking out for those whinstone setts!! 
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And other locomotive-related things...

Amongst the complex at Snailbeach, there lurks a locomotive shed.  A beautifully restored locomotive shed...

I'd suspect it was in a bad way before its restoration.  In fact, I think it must have survived at around half its current height, judging by the pristine mortar which characterises the upper storey.  Purists may sneer at the possibility that this represents a dodgy reconstruction, but I have no objection to it - I'm sure they'll have had plenty of documentary evidence, photographic evidence and so on which they can use to base their build upon,  The finished build is, I think, rather splendid:-

Here's two views:-

The railway was narrow gauge, and a few stretches of the line still survive.  There's also a small hopper or wagon on display - chances are it didn't actually originate on the site, but it's an appropriate exhibit which just adds to the general atmosphere of the place and it's nice it's found a good home:-

And lastly, a view of where the railway snakes down into an adit.  There are tours inside this particular level, but unfortunately we missed one that day.  I was heartily disappointed...

And believe it or not - there's even more than this to see at Snailbeach (which can be combined with the Stiperstones for a Very Grand Day Out...)

I'll pay one last visit to the site tomorrow...
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A bit of Victorian  ingenuity now...

I'm returning to the lead mines at Snailbeach, and one of its crowning glories, the compressor house.

Again, it survives in excellent condition, with the main block standing to gable height.  This particular group of structures housed another engine, which was used to pump compressed air into the mine via hoses.  This was used to operate the mining equipment, giving us one of the earliest examples of hydraulic power use in the country, evidently:-

The small arched passageways at the foot of the building appear to be flues, perhaps associated with stoking the fire to the engines, or perhaps allowing air into the system for use in the hydraulic hoses.  Unfortunately, I'm not an engineer, so the way this might have operated escapes me...

The full layout of the structure is 'L'-shaped on plan.  Here's the other section, not quite so well preserved but with some lovely finishing touches.  I particularly like the way in which the segmental arches over the windows and the bull's eye window at the lower level are finished off in brick:- 

The final structure which makes up the group is this impressive chimney.  It's built of brick, with a mortared rubble section at the base.  It has the date of the mining complex - 1881 - built into it using contrasting brickwork:-

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Since my life seems to be revolving around industrial archaeology right now, it seems appropriate to devote a few posts to the industrial archaeology of Shropshire.  And to Snailbeach, in particular...

Snailbeach was the site of a lead-mining complex, which at its zenith in the 1880s were allegedly the most productive in Europe.  In addition to the lead ores, the site also produced copper and barytes, used as a lubricant for drilling and as a constinuent in paint manufacture.

One of the important structures on the site, still surviving in remarkably good condition, is this imposing engine house.  It would once have housed a whacking great beam engine which would originally have been used to pump water out from the mine shafts:-

It's a lovely monumental structure, which oddly enough resembles a Scots medieval towerhouse...

The next, rather wonky, photo shows the other wall, with its double set of gables.  It was incredibly difficult to get this entire wall in the same shot:-

Next to the engine house, is the complex of furnaces which would have powered the beam engine:-

And beyond Snailbeach, scattered about the countryside, are  yet more monumental structures which bear more than a fleeting resemblance to Scots tower-houses ...

Yes, you've got it.  It's another engine house.   Sitting slap-bang in the middle of a field just off the A488 .

Who said industrial archaeology was boring???
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