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Report - Wainfelin and Tranch iron mine. 31/05/10

Discussion in 'Mines and Quarries' started by Magnetmonkey, May 31, 2010.

  1. Magnetmonkey

    Magnetmonkey 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    Nov 26, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Wainfelin and Tranch iron mine or Troideg Level.
    All credit for the writing and guide goes to Chris Gibbs His website is : http://mines.webuda.com/wainfelin.html

    There is very little that can be said with any certainty about the history of this mine. Even the original entrance has now been lost. The entrance is really the very far end of the mine, which was probably an extension made after the mine ceased production. The original entrance would have been somewhere on the Crumlin Road near Old Furnace. Old Furnace is so called because it is the site of one of the oldest known iron furnaces in Pontypool, the Trosnant Furnace. The Trosnant Furnace was opened in 1576 and worked until 1830.

    A map from 1811, drawn by a Mr. Watkin George, shows a disused iron mine entrance called the Troideg Level in the exact position where we would expect the Wainfelin / Tranch iron mine to surface at its, now, far end. There is no indication on this map of a mine entrance in Pontnewynydd as we see it now. The Troideg Level is known to have had 1410 sleepers inside. Sleepers would be laid about one yard apart and give a good indication of the length of a mine. The explored length of the Wainfelin / Tranch iron mine is 1320 yards, just 90 yards short of the expected distance.

    We might therefore expect this mine to have opened as early as 1600. Originally iron stone would have been collected from the surface to feed the Trosnant Furnace, but this would soon have run out necessitating the opening of a mine. As we know from the 1811 map, the mine had ceased production by 1811. Chalked on a wall near the Pontnewynydd entrance is the date 1765. Since this was the point furthest from the original entrance, it is reasonable to suppose this date marks the closing of the mine.

    The entrance above was 'rediscovered' in 1993, when the Pontypool bypass was built. At this time there was a stone above the entrance with the engraving "CHL 1831". CHL refers to Capel Hanbury Leigh, a local land owning family that had large interests in the local iron industry. Unfortunately this stone has now gone missing. Why was the mine opened at Pontnewynydd? The mine had long fallen into disuse. It is improbable that the intention was to provide a means of transporting pigs of iron from Old Furnace to the Osbourne Forge, since Old Furnace had ceased production before the new entrance was opened. One theory is that the new entrance caused the flow of water in the mine to reverse, this would mean that the Osbourne Forge would have additional water supply to the Afon Llwedd.

    First off mud lots of mud raging from ankle to balls sucking deep goodness the full length of the mine.





    These next two I have never seen anything like it. They are not roots or bits of wood they feel like calcite. Any ideas will be helpfull??!!



    Random nail.


    Over exposed but mighty impressive formations.


    We think this pic is a tree fossil.

    michael taylor and Nick0 like this.

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  2. Nick0

    Nick0 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    Apr 3, 2015
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    I love these colours, it goes to show we don't even know what`s on our own door step! or er.. underneath it!!;)
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