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Monday, 11 October 2010

A Fine Week At The Maenofferen Slate Quarry

Last weeks weather at Maenofferen Slate Quarry
Survey at Maenofferen is nearly completed with an overall site plan encompassing the whole quarry complex including the original workers housing, the inclines for carrying away the processed slate and the tramways for removing the slate waste. Detailed recording has also taken place of two of the more significant structures, the saw mill and the winding house at the top of the underground incline. Commission photographer Iain Wright also made the best of the much improved weather this week to come out and make a photographic record of the site.

On Friday we were joined by slate industry experts Dafydd Gwyn and John Crosskey, and we spent an enjoyable day trying to match the archaeological evidence with what is known of the site historically. While largely successful it was interesting that the archaeological remains could still raise new questions and issues regarding the site. John has also kindly provided us with some historic photographs which will greatly aid our understanding of the historical development of the site.

We will now spend the next couple of weeks processing the data we have already collected, before going back out in November to carry out the final field-check and finalise our archive searches. Many thanks to Andrew Roberts and all the Greaves team for being so helpful and accommodating during our time on site – and for allowing us to experience the blasting (from a safe distance!) of the new quarries.

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