ECTON HILL MINES (& ECTON ENGINE HOUSE)

In its heyday in the latter half of the 18th Century, the Ecton Copper Mine, overlooking the Manifold Valley near Hulme End, was the deepest and one of the most productive mines in the UK. The history of Peakland lead mining in the Limestone is well known but not so well known is the working of the massive copper mineralisation in the SW of the Peak. On Ecton Hill the Ecton and Clayton Mines (amongst others) exploited the unique almost vertical “pipes” of high yield copper and lead ores. Ecton’s mines were the major UK source of copper in the 1760s-1780s which has left us with a very interesting range of tips, adits and what could be the oldest surviving winding-engine house in Britain possibly even the world? – dating to 1788! Largely intact, but with roof lowered to one side and converted in 20th century to a barn. Most sites can be accessed from Public Footpaths, park at SK096581.The mines are being studied by the Ecton Mine Educational Trust who have access to Salts Level from their field centre. There is much to see in the area and further research is advised!!

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