During my vacation to Cornwall, I rented a holiday cottage, just along the coast from the Geevor Tin Mine. Mining has been a part of this landscape since the late 18th century, and indeed Geevor already had a history dating back a century before it took on it’s current name! The mine has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage “Site of Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape” since 2006.
The site covers around 67 acres, but the mine workings spread out underneath the site and stretch out around 3 square miles, with 85 miles of tunnel, some going way out to sea. I walked from the cottage down to the coast to see Pendeen lighthouse, turned west at the coast, and made my way along the South West Coast Path, until I got to the mine.
As I’ve mentioned before, on this trip I had my trusty Pentax ME Super with me, nice and light but a good performer with the 50mm f1.7 and the f2.8 28mm. Good old Agfa Vista 200 (Fuji C200?) was still available from Poundland at the time, so that was the stock.
Part of the extraction process to get the tin out of the rock, was achieved by the “Crusher”. One can see a small stack to steel balls atop the machine. These were loaded in along with the rock, then rotated, the steel balls helping to smash open the rocks. Can you imagine the noise!
The Tin Man was originally made here at Geevor in 2000 for the local Millennium celebrations. All that remained of the original was the head, so Graham Jobbins reimagined this Tin Man which was made at Mounts Bay Academy in 2015. Note he has his heart in his hand! Outside and at the entrance stands “a memorial to the hard rock miners”, the memorial is both a garden and sculpture, both by artist Colin Caffell.