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Pembroke Mine Mine, Cornwall

Principal ores: COPPER & TIN

St Austell: grid reference SX058526

Notable minerals: Chalybite, Chalcopyrite, Chalcocite, Copper, Kaolin, Melaconite & Pyrites.

Pembroke Mine, including New Pembroke and Boscundle Mines lay one and a half miles southwest of Par in St. Blazey parish, in the Par Section of the St. Austell Mining District. The mine worked with East Crinnis as South Par.

Pembroke Mine is known to have been at work prior to 1815 and worked under one guise or another until 1877. The mine worked Pembroke Main Lode, Wheal Eliza Lode, Barrett's Lode, Great Crosscourse Lode, Oat's Lode, Edgcumbe's Engine Lode, South Branch Lode and Red Lode lodes from a number of shafts including: Bennett's, Edgcumbe Engine, Matthew's, Footway, Grove (or Tallack's), New Engine, Old Engine, Pearce's, Summerpole, Old Sump, Taylor's, Bray's and Carlyon Shafts.

Although very little is known about Pembroke Mine it was the 4th largest producer of copper in Cornwall in 1826. George Abbott in his 'Essay on the Mines of England' in 1833, records Pembroke as a mine that was 'continuously productive and was still working profitably' and indicates in table form that Pembroke had made profits of £70,000 and was a mine that was producing, on average, 4,100 tons of copper ore per annum. For the years between 1815 to 1819 and 1862 to 1867, Pembroke (later New Pembroke) produced over 85,900 tons of 7.75% copper ore.

Nowadays just the base of an engine house remains. Its structure formerly housing an 80-inch pumping engine built by Harveys of Hayle in 1839 and installed at Wheal Treasure, part of Fowey Consols. From here the engine moved to Par Consols before finally being acquired by New Pembroke in 1869. It is worth noting that this particular pumping engine had the longest stroke of any engine in Cornwall at 12 feet.

Boscundle Mine produced 1,115 tons of black tin between 1852 and 1863 as well as 205 tons of high grade copper ore at 12.5% between 1851 and 1854. New Pembroke as the mine was called on its reopening in 1862, produced 2,225 tons of 11.5% copper as well as 935 tons of black tin between 1866 and 1877. The Mine Manager around this time was Francis Puckey.

Thomas Spargo, the mining historian, writes in his book 'The Mines of Cornwall and Devon: Statistics and Observations' in 1865, that Pembroke was '... in the Parish of St. Blazey, Cornwall, in 6,400 shares. Commenced in October, 1863, under the management of Captain Francis Puckey. Secretary and Purser, Mr. John Polkinghorne, Tywardreath, Resident Agent, Captain Jno. Puckey. Clay-slate is the 'country' traversed by the lodes. 31 men employed. Proprietors, Major Carlyon, and Trustees of late John Rogers, of Roselyon, St. Blazey. Dues, 1-24th. Depth of mine, 60 fathoms; no adit. Pumping-engine, 24-inch, rotary. The outlay has been 17s. 6d. per share. Prospects very good. This sett is part of Old Pembroke and Wheal Edgcumbe. No returns in 1864, but 1865 will present a different account, judging from the prospects'.

The Shareholders' Guardian of 1866 has a report stating that 'At New Pembroke Mine meeting the accounts showed a debit balance of £15 8d. 11s. A call of 1s. 6d. per share was made. Captain Puckey says "From our proximity to the lodes east of the great cross-course, and which were so productive in Old Pembroke Mine west of the said cross-course, realising a profit, we believe, of £200,000 to the adventurers in that mine, we consider our prospects to be very encouraging, for should we but succeed in intersecting a good copper lode in our south crosscut, in addition to the tin lode at present working on in the north part of the mine, we should then soon be able to pay cost, and eventually well repay the adventurers for their present outlay"'.

There is a wealth of information on the mines and miners of Cornwall available. Why not explore Cornwall's industrial heritage through the Bookstore?

Other nearby mines and their main ores

East Crinnis (approx. 0.2 km; COPPER, TIN & ZINC)

Great Crinnis (approx. 0.4 km; COPPER, LEAD, IRON & SILVER)

Par Consols (approx. 0.5 km; COPPER & TIN)

Par & St Blazey Consols (approx. 2.7 km; TIN)

Polmear (approx. 3.0 km; COPPER & PYRITES)

Fowey Consols (approx. 4.0 km; COPPER & TIN)

Treverbyn, Knightor, Ruby & Trethurgy (approx. 4.6 km; IRON)

Great Polgooth (approx. 6.5 km; TIN & COPPER)

Rocks and Treverbyn United (approx. 6.6 km; TIN)

Wheal Bunnie (approx. 6.9 km; TIN & WOLFRAM)


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