The Tin Coast is the recent designation for this area which once saw a great deal of tin and copper mining activity.
It’s where the fictional Ross and Demelza Poldark lived (recent filming has been completed for the next series) and the setting for the film TIN by Miracle Theatre company. This is loosely based on a true story and, as a consequence, there were many of the original books collected and allegedly destroyed by those who were directly involved in the real life scandal. Very few books remain and those who do have copies are unlikely to reveal they have them!
The heritage of the area is that of fishing, farming and Tin and Copper mining. Miners would help out at Harvest time. During the latter part of the 20th Century Miners were able to earn good money by working in a mine. Many miners travelled the World as a result of their skills learnt at the rock face. Evidence of this can be seen on the Memorials in the churchyard in Pendeen.
Levant Mine was the site of a disaster in 1919 which saw the failure of the Man Engine, a sort of lift which took miners up and down the mine. Read about it here.
The Community in general worked hard and played hard. The spirit of the Community when the mines were thriving was vibrant. Traditions such as Choirs and Silver Bands survive today. Changes over time have, inevitably, made an impact on the Community.
A project called The Man Engine (pictured) toured Cornwall, ending up at Geevor Tin Mining Museum in 2016. It has recently won a Best Arts Project Award.
The area is World Heritage and the buildings at Geevor remain as they were left on that last shift. Geevor was a big employer so the closing of the mine was devastating.
The Miners Memorial, erected at the entrance to Geevor Tin Mine Museum is worth a visit. Special days are organised at Geevor during holidays and are very child friendly with dressing up and competitions. An archive is being compiled and there is an ongoing exhibition to wander around. The Count House cafe is open Sunday to Friday and we recommend their breakfasts and Cornish pasties. They will take orders for you to collect.
Run by the National Trust, Levant Mine is a short wander along the South West Coast path from Geevor Tin Mining Museum. Parking is available and free to NT members.
Botallack Count House and the Crown Mines (shown pictured above) are a short drive/walk away. Botallack Some of Poldark was filmed here.
Cape Cornwall also has a monument, erected by the Heinz family who once owned the land. St Helen’s Oratory is on the side of the cape.
The Coast Watch station at Cape Cornwall are the eyes along the coast. Read about some of the things which have happened on their website and in Outreach magazine each month. This is a trained volunteer run organisation. If you are local and have a few regular hours to spare to join the team please contact them.
There is a Golf Course nearby.
To discover more about this area see Pendeen Walks Printed copies are available from the Centre at £3.99 each. Written by local author Peter Wilkinson. Contributions go to Liberty with the sale of each copy.
Our Walks for Health are taking a break for a few weeks. Look out for when we start them again. Thanks to Paul Johnson and Ailsa Young for their organisation of such interesting wanderings.