Report - - Moss Head Quarries Coniston - Feb 2020 | Mines and Quarries | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Moss Head Quarries Coniston - Feb 2020


Down t'pit
28DL Full Member
Finally had time to visit Coniston after planning it for a while. Unfortunately the weather was not the best, it hailed for most of the a trip and combined with high guests of 40+ mph made for interesting walk up. Anybody who has been here will know that it's a fair walk up the mountain, even more so when there is snow on the ground. After we visited the lower levels which have mainly collapsed or are about to. There is some interesting surface remains including a blacksmiths with a pelton wheel and dynamo. Further up are the remains of an aerial ropeway where there is some collapsed towers along with the ropes still going down the mountain. There was an interesting scramble up to one of the levels because we couldn't see the path - there was a couple of brown pants moments thrown in there as well.

We never made it to the top because it was getting later and @Mr Sam had a 3.5 hour drive home.

History (Fron Wikipedia)
The Old Man slate quarries were believed to have started in the 12-13th centuries, although there is little evidence on site of this. By the 1500s the quarries, working a kind of volcanic slate silver-grey in colour, were well established. The earliest major working shortly after this period was probably at Low Water Quarry, where slate was prized in an opencast manner from cuttings near the summit, Scald Kop Quarry, where a large cavern was formed from slate extraction on the surface, and the Saddlestone Quarry, again consisting of two 'caves' where slate had been quarried to form underground workings

Even though the weather was awful, it's still a glorious walk so I'm going to start with a few photos of the walk up.

Looks like someone had rolled it off the top of tip at some point.

An old wagon, it looks like the top has been rotated. This is possibly to make it easy to tip the contents out.

A Pelton Wheel
Air compressor (Centre right)
Air tank (left)
A drill

The Pelton wheel which was fed from a piple coming down from higher up on the mountain.

Here is remains of trackwork and the possible remains of a tower from the ropeway.

No idea what this is. Possibly some sort of saw?
Bramley Engineering Co.
No. 10995

The second level we came across. This makes a right turn and is blocked shortly after.

A couple of collapsed tower from the ropeway.

A steam winch located next to the second tower.

Looking down the valley towards Coniston you can see the mining landscape.

Standing on top of the partially collapsed adit you can see the layout.

A slightly lower level, where you can get in without getting wet. There is another tank in the foreground.

Tracks going off the end of the tips, a brief bit of sun shines down on Coniston water.

This is the level with the possible 'saw'

Another steam winch, built in Glasgow

And now for a few photos of random bits of tramway.

There must be a leak somewhere otherwise It should be full considering ther rain in the past few weeks.

Moss chamber is massive, there is a big drop to the left and it goes up even further on the far end. You wouldn't want to be in here in the dark!

Stood on the far end. The lowest bit you can see is where the previous photo was taken.



28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Man alive, you just bought back childhood memories of my first mountain wlaking holidays with my dad, last time I went there I was 10. We only had a few candles to light the gloom inside, as I recall we didn't go too far in. One day I must get back and have a good lookround. Thanks for sharing!

Calamity Jane

i see beauty in the unloved, places & things
Regular User
Great report. That winch is a winner. Love the landscape shots. What a walk, and in snow, well done. I bet you were frozen. But good results and snowy photos are quite special in a strange way :thumb

Down and beyond

The true source of englands wealth is coal
Regular User
Great full report enjoyed reading this the above ground and beneath top photos


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
That old mine cart is identical to the ones they used in Cults limestone mine in Fife, comparing the two they look the same in every way.


28DL Member
28DL Member
Would explain the the associated pipes and tanks littering the mountain. Thanks
The tanks are air tanks that's all I can tell you my dad was a miner at Yarlside he said they where air when I asked him 40yrs ago. I'd seen them when I was climbing. The family came from Lapland in 1540 to mine here, I think his father worked up there.