IRONSTONE QUARRIES, CARREG MAEN TARO
Map Reference SO21SW
Grid Reference SO23881127
Unitary (Local) Authority Torfaen
Old County Monmouthshire
Type of Site QUARRY
Broad Class INDUSTRIAL
Period Post Medieval
Site Description A large quarry approximately 120m NW-SE by 80m. The E side has some exposed bedrock but it, together with the N and NW sides, are mainly vegetation-covered scree. On the W side are several integral tips up to 5m high and the working face is lost. Was this side worked first and the better preserved E side last? The quarry is 8-10m deep although all of the ground surface, which is very uneven, seems to be waste material (see 260727), so quarry and tip overlap. The quarry is served by a tramroad (nprn 260529) that probably extended as far as a loading bay (nprn 260541) on the N side of the quarry.
This area is a particularly well preserved area of early ironstone workings within the extensive mineral extraction landscape of Blaenavon. The workings represented on the ground are as shown on the 1880 First Edition OS map, then identified as disused. Finds of tramroad plates within the area suggest that it was being worked by 'patch working' under seperate sub-leases from the Blaenavon company, and the mineral transported to the Ironworks by tramroad. The area includes quarry faces, hand tips, tramroad routes, and coal and iron ore levels. An extensive system of watercourses may have been connected with scouring, and with carrying water to reservoirs on the south-east side of the mountain. Two steam engines are believed to have operated within the area at SO2384 1118 and 2394 1127.
Source: CADW Scheduled Ancient Monument Record (Ref: MM295).