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Water Powered Chain Incline at Bryneglwys Slate Quarry

A Scheduled Monument in Llanfihangel-y-Pennant, Gwynedd

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Coordinates

Latitude: 52.6289 / 52°37'44"N

Longitude: -3.9321 / 3°55'55"W

OS Eastings: 269329

OS Northings: 305213

OS Grid: SH693052

Mapcode National: GBR 8Z.7DHR

Mapcode Global: WH577.K5TY

Entry Name: Water Powered Chain Incline at Bryneglwys Slate Quarry

Scheduled Date: 12 October 1998

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 3961

Cadw Legacy ID: ME186

Schedule Class: Water Supply and Drainage

Category: Water Power System

Period: Post Medieval/Modern

County: Gwynedd

Community: Llanfihangel-y-Pennant

Traditional County: Merionethshire

Description

The monument consists of a water power system which was part of Bryneglwys Quarry. The site is the only surviving chain incline directly powered by waterwheels in Wales. Bryneglwys Quarry was first worked in 1844, and from 1862 was managed by Robert Williams from Nantlle. It closed in 1947. The water-powered chain incline was constructed by Williams in the 1860s. These were widely used, especially in Nantlle, to haul loads up from quarry pits, having been introduced from Cornwall in the 1840s. A heavy chain ran into the pit at an angle from a headframe at the lip of the quarry. A traveller carriage ran up and down this chain hauled by a winding cable, with a waggon suspended on a continuation of the winding cable below. Waggons were lifted from the quarry floor, using power from the waterwheels, and landed on a platform at the top. The site now contains the pits for two waterwheels, two strongpoints for the headframes with landing platforms, a quarry pit face, a weighbridge house, and a self-acting tramroad incline down to the mills.

The monument is the only surviving example in Wales of this important and formerly widespread method of haulage. It is of national importance for its potential to enhance our knowledge of water management systems. 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.

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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