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West Mine
West Mine is the largest mine on the Edge and was worked between 1858 and 1878. However, some parts appear to be a bit earlier and others later with clear signs of twentieth century workings.

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Sub-headings

    Old surface pictures of West Mine
    Before Plank Shaft
    Plank Shaft and beyond
    Trip with novices in October 2009


Old surface pictures of West Mine
Original entranceRailway incline in 1920sOriginal entrance with gate intactPicture from 1923 of entrance with rough fence1943 with what appears to be some infilling
Original entranceRailway incline in 1920sOriginal entrance with gate intactPicture from 1923 of entrance with rough fence1943 with what appears to be some infilling
Date unknown but probably late 50s as entrance is bricked, partly filled and has hole in centreFrom Coward's 1911 bookPicture in Jim Lovelock's book.  We think this is West Mine but it could be Wood MineView in snow, same comment as previous picture that it could be Wood Mine.Date unknown but almost certainly 1960s
Date unknown but probably late 50s as entrance is bricked, partly filled and has hole in centreFrom Coward's 1911 bookPicture in Jim Lovelock's book. We think this is West Mine but it could be Wood MineView in snow, same comment as previous picture that it could be Wood Mine.Date unknown but almost certainly 1960s
1949, entrance bricked up.  The Block End is visible on the right.  Note square corner suggesting quarrying for stone.Probably 1960s againEarlier picture, may be 1940s1923Entrance bricked up, maybe 1960s, hole in wall
1949, entrance bricked up. The Block End is visible on the right. Note square corner suggesting quarrying for stone.Probably 1960s againEarlier picture, may be 1940s1923Entrance bricked up, maybe 1960s, hole in wall
1960s, fairly well infilled19511950s or 60s, bricked up1950s or 60sBlock End in the 1950s
1960s, fairly well infilled19511950s or 60s, bricked up1950s or 60sBlock End in the 1950s
Block End in the 1950sBlock End in 1951Supposed to be West Mine but might be Engine VeinAbove West Mine in 1957 
Block End in the 1950sBlock End in 1951Supposed to be West Mine but might be Engine VeinAbove West Mine in 1957 

Before Plank Shaft
New entrance in 18 acre fieldInside the new entranceInside the new entranceInside the new entranceShaft in the top level with rope rigged for abseiling
New entrance in 18 acre fieldInside the new entranceInside the new entranceInside the new entranceShaft in the top level with rope rigged for abseiling
Abseiling down the 1st shaftIn the top passagesFirst ladder down at the end of the Roman GalleryThe crawl near the entranceSecond ladder down
Abseiling down the 1st shaftIn the top passagesFirst ladder down at the end of the Roman GalleryThe crawl near the entranceSecond ladder down
Third ladder downDescending ladders (second ladder on right, third below)Fourth ladder downInside the old entranceMain chamber in the 1950s
Third ladder downDescending ladders (second ladder on right, third below)Fourth ladder downInside the old entranceMain chamber in the 1950s
The Main Chamber nowMain chamberMain chamber - a practice rescueThe pillar in Main ChamberNigel's Nightmare
The Main Chamber nowMain chamberMain chamber - a practice rescueThe pillar in Main ChamberNigel's Nightmare
... and againLook no hands!Second traverseSecond traverseIn the main chamber
... and againLook no hands!Second traverseSecond traverseIn the main chamber
Main ChamberTraverse at ManhattanBelow H PlanksH Planks - so-called because there was once a plank between the other two making an H-shapeH Planks
Main ChamberTraverse at ManhattanBelow H PlanksH Planks - so-called because there was once a plank between the other two making an H-shapeH Planks
Climbing down above H PlanksBelow the H PlanksTraverse at H PlanksTraverse at H PlanksDropping down to Canyon
Climbing down above H PlanksBelow the H PlanksTraverse at H PlanksTraverse at H PlanksDropping down to Canyon
The CanyonGreen RiverGreen RiverBottom of the railway inclineStart of Twisted Pillar
The CanyonGreen RiverGreen RiverBottom of the railway inclineStart of Twisted Pillar
Twisted PillarClimbing out of Twisted PillarAbove Twisted PillarOld rope climb at Flight DeckNew ladder at Flight Deck
Twisted PillarClimbing out of Twisted PillarAbove Twisted PillarOld rope climb at Flight DeckNew ladder at Flight Deck
Flight Deck - the purple band is a fungusFlight DeckSphinx ChamberSphinx ChamberAbove the Sphinx
Flight Deck - the purple band is a fungusFlight DeckSphinx ChamberSphinx ChamberAbove the Sphinx
Squeeze in Sphinx Chamber... in... middle... out 
Squeeze in Sphinx Chamber... in... middle... out 

Plank Shaft and beyond
Plank shaftPlank ShaftHeadframe over Plank ShaftLevelling the headframe at Plank ShaftPassage at the bottom of Plank Shaft
Plank shaftPlank ShaftHeadframe over Plank ShaftLevelling the headframe at Plank ShaftPassage at the bottom of Plank Shaft
Looking up Plank ShaftThe Great ArroyoThe Great ArroyoCottage floor ceilingChain Shaft
Looking up Plank ShaftThe Great ArroyoThe Great ArroyoCottage floor ceilingChain Shaft
Chain ShaftChain Shaft - preparing to abseil down to the bottom levelChain Shaft - abseiling downLooking down Chain ShaftThe Lion (The Svart Alfar of Alan Garner's book)
Chain ShaftChain Shaft - preparing to abseil down to the bottom levelChain Shaft - abseiling downLooking down Chain ShaftThe Lion (The Svart Alfar of Alan Garner's book)
Climbing the LionClimbing the LionBeyond Chain ShaftJoining the Road to RomeLaundry Chute
Climbing the LionClimbing the LionBeyond Chain ShaftJoining the Road to RomeLaundry Chute
At the end of the mineShaft at the end of the mineUpper Springboard CavernUpper Springboard Cavern 
At the end of the mineShaft at the end of the mineUpper Springboard CavernUpper Springboard Cavern 

Trip with novices in October 2009
It's wet in some of the passagesLooking up Doctor's Shaft with Tom on the ladder.Resting at the far end of the mine.In the Main ChamberTwisted Pillar Chamber
It's wet in some of the passagesLooking up Doctor's Shaft with Tom on the ladder.Resting at the far end of the mine.In the Main ChamberTwisted Pillar Chamber

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