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Dorothea Quarry
n10694's Avatar
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Default Dorothea Quarry - 14-08-2010, 14:04

As promised, there were no WW2 ruins (well - not a lot) near Llanwnda where we just spent a week. There were some slate quarries up the road though...............

The area around Dorothea Quarry is practically solid slate, with numerous quarries, from small, to very large. It was served by the Nantlle Tramway.

Tal-y-Sarn Hall was probably once the home of a quarry owner. It's perched right in the middle, high above most of the workings. Obviously the view did not matter:

Not much remains, nature has taken over:

Kitchens ?

There are a number of very large, deep lakes, which are flooded working pits, however, they also bring death to numerous divers who use them for practise.

Old workings are evident in the walls:

However, it has a gem, the only known beam engine in Wales (as claimed !). The ownership is under debate and argument, meanwhile, it decays.

It was installed in 1904, and worked until the '50's, until replaced by electric pumps. The shaft is 550 feet deep, and is unfenced, uncapped and waiting for people to fall in. The engine was built by Holman Brothers and was the last but one ever built. It was able to pump 10 gallons of water per second from a depth of over 500 feet. The engine started work in 1906 and served until 1951 when it was replaced by a 60hp electric pump. Apart from a brief period in 1956 the engine has been disused ever since.

The pump cylinder

There used to be a shearlegs on the end of the beam supports at the top, but it collapsed, and as a consequence the wooden pump rod has been cut.

Time for work, break over

It was fed by two Lancashire Boilers, which still remain

Watching Over

Coal Bunker and Chute

For a better account, and pictures of the beam engine:

Beam Engine


A smaller boiler for a chain incline, which failed it's boiler pressure test

Incline on the right

However, some traditions carry on

Everyone needs one of these

One evening, decided to have a look at the quarries from above, and spotted this blondin - guess where the next trip is to:

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Default 15-08-2010, 00:21

Cool report. Dived it a few times, never looked at the surface workings much. The quarry has taken a few lives, but is popular with divers as it is free, and it is deep. The deepest part is over 100M deep. Lots of stuff below the water too.

Here is a map of what is below the water.
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Default 15-08-2010, 08:19

We often hear about the deaths on the Welsh news, they usually fetch the decompression victims to somewhere in Ellesmere Port for treatment.

I can see the appeal, but diving is not for me !
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Location: Denton, Manchester
Default 16-08-2010, 01:07

Love the Dorothea area, it's still easy to trip over bits of railway track in the vegetation.
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