Hello, my name is Mal Tabb.
Thanks for visiting our web pages. Marion & I operate a small outdoor activity organisation called Canoes, Mountains & Caves. We provide activities for: adults, young people, schools, charities, families & individuals. A key aspect of our work is the provision of a "Community Programme" which is offered free of charge to participants. If you think we might be able to help please don't hesitate to contact us, you can find out more about what we do on our main website www.canoesmountainscaves.com

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Stoneycroft Gill

I was back in Stoneycroft Gill again on Wednesday leading a gorge walk for a fairly large group that were staying at the Centre. The group were a great bunch with seven or eight nationalities represented and the Christian schools work they do is excellent. It was amongst the best of the many days I have enjoyed in Stoneycroft Gill over the last six or seven years.

Stoneycroft Gill in the Newlands Valley is, to me, a special place in the Lake District - its a magical set of cascades of water offering great entertainment for the folk that use it each year as a gorge walking venue (the bottom section is bolted and provides a gentle introduction to canyoning) but the setting is exquisite - right in the heart of the Newlands Valley. Walkers find it a popular start point (see my last post) for Causey Pike, Eel Craggs, Sail, Barrow etc. I guess the heavy footfall must take its toll on the natural environment of the Gill, however, it still does look superb.

From my point of view there is added interest in its mining history which provides both an interesting and tragic tale. The early (Elizibethan period) German mining engineers were the first to work in Stoneycroft Gill prospecting for lead. Sometime around 1700 an engineer named David Davis undertook extensive work in the Gill: building dams, sluices and sinking an engine shaft. However, a storm destroyed the efforts of his labour and many miners were tragically drowned as a result. 

The mine did re-open some 160 years later and was worked for a further eight years prior to closure. There is much evidence of the work of the miners in and around the gill and its well worth an explore to see the history that is still evident.
Ref: The Lakes & Cumbria Mines Guide, Ian Tyler, Blue Rock Publications, 2006

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