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Wheal Coates, St Agnes

Categories: Historic Sites, Tourist Spots
Inspirock Rating:
4.8/5 based on 100+ reviews on the web
Wheal Coates is a former tin mine situated on the north coast of Cornwall, England, UK, on the cliff tops between Porthtowan and St Agnes. It is preserved and maintained by the National Trust.‘Wheal’ is Cornish for ‘place of work’, not 'mine' as is often stated. The term for 'mine' is 'bal', as in 'bal maidens', the women who worked on the surface. The mine opened in 1802 and was worked until its closure in 1889. It came into full production in 1815. The surviving buildings date from the 1870s when deep underground mining began at the site and were stabilised and preserved in 1986.There are three engine houses that formerly housed Cornish engines. Towanroath Pumping Engine House (1872) was used to pump water from the adjacent 600 ft Towanroath shaft. Whim Engine House was added in 1880 to crush ore for processing. A calciner dating from 1910–1913 roasted the tin to remove impurities such as arsenic.In 1881 138 people were employed at the site to mine a seam of tin just below sea level but this and a subsequent period of operation from 1911-1913 were not very successful because tin production was sporadic.
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  • We've been coming here for 20 years - and it is still awe inspiring every time. Beautiful spot, with an amazing view of the Atlantic. One of my favourite places on the North Coast of Cornwall. We regu...  read more »
  • Parked up at Chapel Porth (free car parking if you have National Trust membership), & enjoyed the walk up to the Wheel Coates. Would definitely recommend walking shoes, the path is quite steep in plac...  read more »
  • The Wheal Coates Tin Mine is an attraction that can be accessed easily and it a good 'stop off' whilst walking the coastal path. The views are magnificent. 
  • Outstanding natural beauty doesn't do this justice.. such a fantastic location, such history and with the sea as a backdrop, it's just awesome. The car-park is about 200 meters from the Engine houses, and the path is suitable for wheelchair/mobility scooter. Once you get to the Engine House though the path down to Wheal Coates is somewhat steep and not suitable for wheelchairs etc.. but you can see it from the top.. It's well worth seeing.
  • Stunning view with the backdrop of the Cornish coastline. Checked off my bucket list of places to see and it was worth the wait. It was so foggy when we set off from St. Agnes head that we only saw the engine house when we were about 30 feet from it but by the time we came back the sun had come out especially for me to see the view. Breathtaking and nice that you can just wander around it all and explore with nothing cordoned off.
  • Beautiful old engine house that really brings home the wonder of Cornish history. Fascinating to look at, with spectacular views of Chapel Porth beach and the sea. Breathtaking.
  • We walked to Wheal Coates along the coastal path from Trevaunance Cove a walk of 2-2 1/2 miles and then we walked on to Porthtowan another 2-2 1/2 miles. It's a beautiful walk and Wheal Coates is the perfect place to stop for a breather. All that remains of this once exposed workplace is the brutal majesty of the buildings. Stabilised to ensure they stand in testament to the men who worked the mines many hundreds of metres below. It's hard to imagine what it must have been like especially when we look on them on a warm bright summers day not a cold winters eve with a storm laying waves against the rocks below. I think it is a very worthwhile trip to see Wheal Coates and it doesn't matter if you walk like we did or if you drive, there is no entry fee and you will struggle to find a better backdrop in all Cornwall.
  • Beautiful! !!
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