The Lost Mine


Mining has been going on in the UK since Palaeolithic times and for centuries was one of the most important industries in Britain. Many of the old, abandoned mines have been forgotten about and, when the pumps were turned off, their deeper sections flooded. This froze in time the moments after their last use.

A underwater complex of slate mine tunnels near Llangollen in Wales was first re-discovered by Martyn Farr, who explored the initial flooded sections. Martyn passed the information to Andy who went on to do solo cave-diving exploration of the deeper section, laying line and recording his finding. The tunnels were full of artefacts like old winch systems, pick axes, mugs, boots and carts. There was even graffiti of men’s names and dates which showed the last use to day from 24th January 1938.

Later a team of divers led by cave diver Will Smith also undertook work in the mine to help map the remaining sections.

This story became a chapter in Andy’s book about Extreme Adventures in the UK. It also became his first film for the BBC’s The One Show, a clips from this can be seen on the TV page.

  • Wales
  • 14.10.2012

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