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ISON MINE

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A new mine was opened at Eisen Hill in 1854. By the late 1850s a small level (Office Level) had been driven behind the mining company's office, but this was soon abandoned. The main working was at Poorsland Adit and at two adits in Hoe Combe. The results were disappointing and by 1860 abandonment was considered. Extension of the Poorsland Adit after 1861 lead to a temporary increase in production. By 1867 further extensions to workings were made in Hoe Combe and further westwards, but by 1877 all work seems to have ended. The shafts, bell pits and tramway or road associated with the Eisen Mine are clearly visible on vertical aerial photographs. Three of the shafts are surrounded by curvilinear enclosures. The majority of the workings date from the second half of the 19th century but some surface workings could be earlier 19th century exploratory workings or even earlier attempts at surface extraction. The main workings comprise, from west to east: three possible adits; Mold's Pit', a hollow 10 m diameter and 0.3 m deep; `Passmore's Pit', with a shaft 6.2 m in diameter and 7 m deep, and the surrounding area is covered in spoil; `Hoe Combe Drift' shown on the OS mapping as `shaft (disused)' has a hedged enclosure around the shaft; `Poorsland Adit' is an exceptionally well preserved adit. To the immediate south of the adit is a possible building platform cut into the hillside; further disused shafts are then annotated on the OS map; another adit and to the east a possible bridge across the River Quarme; On the eastern bank of the river a raised embankment or causeway 2.4 m high presumably to allow ore to be moved to the nearby road (now the A396); `Office Level', in the garden of Ison Cottage, is a rock-cut opening, now blocked, 1.3 m high and 2 m wide. A very well made track is thought to be a tramway but is more likely to be a carefully graded road which allowed ore to be removed by vehicle.

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