GORSEDDAU SLATE QUARRY

Site Details



NPRN
40557
Map Reference
SH54NE
Grid Reference
SH57254533
Unitary (Local) Authority
Gwynedd
Old County
Caernarfonshire
Community
Dolbenmaen
Type of Site
SLATE QUARRY
Broad Class
Industrial
Period
19th Century

Site Description


The now disused Gorseddau Slate Quarry was first opened 1807, as a small concern, but its main period of working was between 1854 and 1857 when it was developed by the Bavarian mining engineer Henry Tobias Tschudy von Ulster. The quarry was a complete commercial failure. Despite massive capitalisation and investment in milling, water courses and reservoir, workers' housing and railway to Porthmadog, returns were derisory. By 1859, its 200 men were producing less than 1400 tons per annum - seven tons per man year. Output peaked at 2140 tons in 1860. The quarry closed in 1867, possibly with some later sporadic working.
The visible remains include tiered workings and waste tips set into and against a south-west facing hillside. There are remains of an incline and several ruined structures including: the Gorseddau Tramway (NPRN 34663) that was built to connect the quarry with Porthmadog, Ynys-y-Pandy Mill (NPRN 40572) and Treforys Workers Village (NPRN 306319).

Sources:
D.Gwyn, Welsh Slate: the Archaeology and History of an Industry (RCAHMW 2015).
David Gwyn & Merfyn Williams (1996) ‘A Guide to the Industrial Archaeology of North West Wales’. Association for Industrial Archaeology.
A.J.Richards, A Gazeteer of the Welsh Slate Industry (1991), p.98-9.

David Leighton & J.Wiles, RCAHMW, 11 February 2015

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