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Report - Moel Fferna Mine -Oct 08

Discussion in 'Mines and Quarries' started by northcave, Oct 29, 2008.

  1. northcave

    northcave blatant is the new covert
    28DL Full Member

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    Slate has been mined in north Wales for several centuries; this was recently confirmed by the discovery in the Menai Strait of the wreck of a 16th century wooden ship carrying finished slates. Welsh output was far ahead of other areas and by 1882, 92% of Britain's production was from Wales.

    Early workings tended to be in surface pits, but as the work progressed downwards, it became necessary to work underground. This was often accompanied by the driving of one or more adits to gain direct access to a Level. In some rare instances, such as here (Moel Fferna), there is no trace of surface workings and the workings were entiely underground.

    Moel Frerna has chambers which follow the slate vein, connected via a series of horizontal Floors (or 'Levels'). The chambers vary in size and are divided by 'pillars' or walls which support the roof. The floors are connected by 'Inclines' which used wedge-shaped trolleys to move trucks between levels.

    At Moel Fferna a team could produce up to 35 tons of finished slate a week. In 1877 they received about 7 shillings a ton for this. After paying wages for the manager, clerks and 'trammers' the company could make a clear profit of twice this amount. This system was not finally abolished until after the Second World War.

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    #1 northcave, Oct 29, 2008
    Last edited: May 6, 2011

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