The Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological
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OLD COAL PITS, BLAENAVON
Primary Reference Number (PRN) : 07826g Trust : Glamorgan Gwent Community : Blaenavon Unitary authority : Torfaen NGR : SO24400953 Site Type (preferred type first) : Post-Medieval Coal workings Status : Scheduled Monument
Summary : Two of the oldest colliery shafts in the Blaenavon Ironworks mineral field, open and in their original condition, possibly dating to the 1790's.
Description : Two of the oldest colliery shafts in the Blaenavon Ironworks mineral field, open and in their original condition. The Old Coal Pits shafts were recorded as existing by 1812 and may date from the 1790s. They worked the Old Coal Seam and by 1829 were connected to the Upper River Row Drift. From 1863 they ventilated the workings of Cinder Pit. In their earlier phase, Old Coal Pits are believed to have been wound by water power, and the dry reservoir lies on the other side of the road to the north-west (outside the scheduled area). Their circular form and pairing suggests that they were driven by waterwheel rather than a water-balance. The shafts are lined in stone within a few feet of the top, above which they are brick, and are understood to be 235ft (71.63m) deep. They are protected by tall brick walls, probably built in the 1940's and can be seen only from a ladder. The scheduled area extends around the outside of the brick walls, in a rectangle roughly 8m x 16m. Of national importance as well as documented early shafts in excellent condition and for their association with Blaenavon Ironworks.