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Tyne and Wear HER(1663): Ravensworth, Coalmill - Details

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Ravensworth, Coalmill




Mine Drainage and Ventilation Site

Mine Pumping Works

Post Medieval



The earthwork and buried remains of the site of a 3-decker coalmill, its water management system and the standing and buried remains of a 19th century sawmill and adjacent wheelpit. The coalmill was installed to the northeast of Ravensworth Castle in the 17th century and a long and circuitous leat, known as The Trench (HER ref. 4121), was constructed to provide sufficient water to power it. The leat channelled the water to a series of three interlinked waterwheels which drove pumps located in several connected shafts, operating them by timber transmission shafts and cog-and-rung gearing. The coalmill was in operation for some 70 years until c.1750. The coalmill site occupies a narrow side valley and is approximately 250 metres from east to west. Surviving remains include The Trench and rectangular holding pool, and earthwork remains of the leat that originally supplied water to the coalmill. The coalmill's three waterwheels are said to have been approx 7 metres in diameter, placed in a line, one above ground supported, the next at ground level, and the third underground. The underground chamber for the sunken waterwheel is believed to survive. To the east of the road is a stone-lined portal, the entrance to an adit which served as an underground watercourse carrying away water raised from the mine. Only five surviving coalmill sites are known nationally. SCHEDULED ANCIENT MONUMENT




<< HER 1663 >> Dept. of National Heritage, 1997, Schedule Entry, 21662 E. Clavering, A.R. Rounding & G.C. Bennett, A1 Trunk Road, Gateshead Western Bypass, Improvement Objection Industrial Archaeology Submission 1995, The Coalmills of North-East England Technology and Culture, University of Chicago Press G. Sinclair, 1683, The Hydrostaticks, p 298; Gateshead Council, 1999, Conservation Area Policy Guidelines, Strategies and Character Statements, Ravensworth Conservation Area, pp 61-63

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