Ancient Monuments

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Hafodlas Slate Quarry Mills and Associated Features

A Scheduled Monument in Betws-y-Coed, Conwy

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Latitude: 53.0885 / 53°5'18"N

Longitude: -3.8241 / 3°49'26"W

OS Eastings: 277934

OS Northings: 356146

OS Grid: SH779561

Mapcode National: GBR 63.9FJR

Mapcode Global: WH663.7M8M

Entry Name: Hafodlas Slate Quarry Mills and Associated Features

Scheduled Date: 8 May 1998

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 895

Cadw Legacy ID: CN295

Schedule Class: Transport

Category: Incline Drumhouse

Period: Post Medieval/Modern

County: Conwy

Community: Betws-y-Coed

Traditional County: Caernarfonshire


The monument consists of a slate mill complex, with associated tramway inclines and other features. Hafodlas Slate Quarry began with trials in 1854 and was established between 1862 and 1867. The mills were water powered and are excellent examples of transverse, longitudinal and bay arrangements. Remains within the site include the mills with the foundations for the several different types of saw used, inclines with surviving gear, waterwheel pits, a slab kiln, and the best surviving example of an explosives magazine in the region. Several noted engineers were involved in promotion of the quarry, including the Spooners of the Festiniog Railway, Daniel Gooch, and the Hunters of Arbroath. The site demonstrates the influence of Scottish quarrying on the slate industry in the use of the Hunter saw, and exemplifies the organisation of slab mills in the boom years of the 1860s.

The monument is a well-preserved slate quarry mill complex with important and diverse remains, and several individual features of special value. The monument is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of 19th century slate production and industrial practices. It retains significant archaeological potential, with a strong probability of the presence of associated archaeological features and deposits. The structure itself may be expected to contain archaeological information concerning chronology and building techniques. A slate mill may be part of a larger cluster of monuments and their importance can be further enhanced by their group value.

The scheduled area comprises the remains described and areas around them within which related evidence may be expected to survive.

Source: Cadw

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