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HER Number:MDV12545
Name:Combe Martin Silver Mines

Summary

Combe Martin Silver mines, first recorded in the late 13th century and worked intermitently until the beginning of 20th century.

Location

Grid Reference:SS 588 465
Map Sheet:SS54NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishCombe Martin
DistrictNorth Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishCOMBE MARTIN

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS54NE/12
  • Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division: SS54NE2

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • MINE (XIII to XX - 1292 AD to 1902 AD (Between))

Full description

Risden, T., 1811, Choreographical Description of Devon, 1580-1640, 348 (Monograph). SDV660.


Lysons, D. + Lysons, S., 1822, Magna Britannica, 136 (Monograph). SDV323771.


Kingdon, E. V., 1867, Silver Mines at Combe Martin, 193-9 (Article in Serial). SDV81868.


Unknown, 1867, Untitled Source, 69,190-9 (Article in Serial). SDV81862.


Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

Map object based on this Source.


Strong, H. W., 1890, A Contribution to the Commercial History of Devonshire, 131 (Article in Serial). SDV81869.


Unknown, 1900-1901, Untitled Source, 173-4 (Article in Serial). SDV81866.


Ordnance Survey, 1905, 5NE (Cartographic). SDV335612.

'Old Silver Lead Mine' shown.


Unknown, 1912 - 1913, Untitled Source, 54-7 (Article in Serial). SDV81865.


Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division, 1953 - 1954, SS54NE2 (Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card). SDV81855.

Possible site of Medieval Silver Mines
1.Silver mines recorded as being wrought and producing immense seams in reigns of Edward I, Edward III and Henry V. The mines were worked in reigns of Edward I and II and Henry VII but reference to lost records would indicate a much earlier date. In 1835 the last company began work on the same site and found some ancient pumps. The mines were working in Stuart times. Unsuccessful attempts were made in 1800, 1813 and 1817 and mining continued until 1902.
2. Site visit 18th September 1953. The earliest silver mines were scattered along the valley and mining was carried out by tunnelling into the sides of the hills. Several tunnels have been found during modern building and drainage excavations. This site is now a grass covered mound with stone retaining wall to south and no trace of pit or shaft.


Ordnance Survey, 1967, SS54NE (Cartographic). SDV339644.

'Mine (Dis)' shown on Ordnance Survey 6 inch map.


Claughton, P. F., 1973, The Metalliferous Mines of North Devon and Exmoor, 5 (Article in Serial). SDV60739.

Old Combmartin Mine. Silver-lead mine, the workings of which are spread over much of the floor and sides of the Umber Valley in the middle of the village. The site of ancient workings dating back to the 13th century, it is documented as being worked intermitently for brief periods from the 16th to the 19th century. Possibly known as Fayes Mine at some time in its history.


Claughton, P. F., 1989, Mining Sites in the Combe Martin Area (Correspondence). SDV81860.

Annotated copies of six inch Ordnance Survey map showing details of various mining sites, including adits, shafts and spoil heap retaining walls. Red shaded areas are those where there is positive documentary evidence of working before 1800, some of which will be of medieval origin. Green shaded areas are sites of workings in use in 19th century, although some will be of earlier origin. Approximate position of shafts and adits marked, but not full extent of underground workings, which may stretch for some distance from entrances highlighted. Other details: Map + letter.


Claughton, P. F., 1993, A List of Mines in North Devon and West Somerset, 091 (Un-published). SDV3410.


Claughton, P., 1997, Lead and Silver Mining: Old Combmartin Mine, 78-81 (Article in Monograph). SDV344180.


Warburton, M., 2001, Industrial Archaeology - A Guided Walk Through Combe Martin's Past (Leaflet). SDV81878.

Other details: Pictoral map.


Claughton, P. F., 2003, Silver Mining in England and Wales, 1066-1500 (Post-Graduate Thesis). SDV81879.


Dean, R., 2004, Gradiometer and Resistance Surveys at Mine Close, Combe Martin, Devon, 4 (Report - Geophysical Survey). SDV319651.

Three likely mine shafts and a further two possible mine shafts were identified during a geophysical survey in the fields to the north of the track at Mine Close. An area near the centre of the survey area was found to have evidence for the remains of buildings (in the form of wall footings) or other structures perhaps associated with mining. Other details: Figure 1. Map object based on this Source.


Green, T., 2005, Trevor Dunkerley and Combe Martin Silver, 19-20 (Article in Serial). SDV322853.


Collings, A. G. + Manning, P. T. + Valentin, J., 2007, The North Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Phase 1. Archaeological Survey. Summary Report (Report - Assessment). SDV339712.

Other details: Survey number 1343.


Rippon, S. + Claughton, P. + Smart, C., 2009, Mining in a Medieval Landscape: The Royal Silver Mines of the Tamar Valley, 4, 18-19, 63-5, 69, 75, 77, 87, 119 (Monograph). SDV344097.

In 1292 the crown opened up new silver mines in the north of the county at Combe Martin, which closed again in 1296. In the 1320s there was renewed interest, and in the five years upto 1330 the mine was taken on lease by five separate individuals including the lord of the manor. Discontinuity of deposits, and the difficulty of predicting and prospecting for new deposits probably contributed to the lack of longevity in the workings, even into the 19th century. The most productive period was from the latter part of the 16th century onwards, partly due to improved pumps which allowed access to deeper parts of the deposit(s). Other details: Figures 2.1-2, 2.6, 3.6.


Ordnance Survey, 2010, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV344030.

Map object based on this Source.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV319651Report - Geophysical Survey: Dean, R.. 2004. Gradiometer and Resistance Surveys at Mine Close, Combe Martin, Devon. Substrata Report. R-MC04-1908. A4 Stapled + Digital. 4.
SDV322853Article in Serial: Green, T.. 2005. Trevor Dunkerley and Combe Martin Silver. North Devon Archaeological Society Newsletter. 9. A5 Paperback. 19-20.
SDV323771Monograph: Lysons, D. + Lysons, S.. 1822. Magna Britannica. Magna Britannica: A Concise Topographical Account of The Several Counties o. 6: Devonshire. Unknown. 136.
SDV335612Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1905. 5NE. Second Edition Ordnance Survey 6 inch Map. Map (Paper).
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV339644Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1967. SS54NE. Ordnance Survey 6 inch map. Map (Paper).
SDV339712Report - Assessment: Collings, A. G. + Manning, P. T. + Valentin, J.. 2007. The North Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Phase 1. Archaeological Survey. Summary Report. Exeter Archaeology Report. 06.22 (rev.1). A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV3410Un-published: Claughton, P. F.. 1993. A List of Mines in North Devon and West Somerset. A List of Mines in North Devon and West Somerset. Unknown. 091.
SDV344030Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2010. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital).
SDV344097Monograph: Rippon, S. + Claughton, P. + Smart, C.. 2009. Mining in a Medieval Landscape: The Royal Silver Mines of the Tamar Valley. Mining in a Medieval Landscape: The Royal Silver Mines of the Tamar Valley. Paperback Volume. 4, 18-19, 63-5, 69, 75, 77, 87, 119.
SDV344180Article in Monograph: Claughton, P.. 1997. Lead and Silver Mining: Old Combmartin Mine. Exmoor's Industrial Archaeology. Photocopy + Digital. 78-81.
SDV60739Article in Serial: Claughton, P. F.. 1973. The Metalliferous Mines of North Devon and Exmoor. Plymouth Mineral and Mining Club Journal. 4. A4 Stapled. 5.
SDV660Monograph: Risden, T.. 1811. Choreographical Description of Devon, 1580-1640. Choreographical Description of Devon, 1580-1640. Unknown. 348.
SDV81855Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division Card: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1953 - 1954. SS54NE2. SS54NE. Card Index.
SDV81860Correspondence: Claughton, P. F.. 1989. Mining Sites in the Combe Martin Area. Letter and Map. A4 Stapled.
SDV81862Article in Serial: Unknown. 1867. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 2 Part 1. Unknown. 69,190-9.
SDV81865Article in Serial: Unknown. 1912 - 1913. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 7 Part 1. Unknown. 54-7.
SDV81866Article in Serial: Unknown. 1900-1901. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 1 Part 1. Unknown. 173-4.
SDV81868Article in Serial: Kingdon, E. V.. 1867. Silver Mines at Combe Martin. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 2. Unknown. 193-9.
SDV81869Article in Serial: Strong, H. W.. 1890. A Contribution to the Commercial History of Devonshire. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 22. Unknown. 131.
SDV81878Leaflet: Warburton, M.. 2001. Industrial Archaeology - A Guided Walk Through Combe Martin's Past. Combe Martin Heritage Link: Industrial Archaeology. A4 Folded.
SDV81879Post-Graduate Thesis: Claughton, P. F.. 2003. Silver Mining in England and Wales, 1066-1500. University of Exeter Thesis. A4 Comb Bound + Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV76282Parent of: Chimney at Combe Martin Silver Mine (Monument)
MDV76272Parent of: Engine House at Combe Martin Silver Mine (Monument)
MDV76267Parent of: Forge at Combe Martin Silver Mine (Building)
MDV76268Parent of: Guide Post to East of Sydenham House, Marystow (Monument)
MDV76271Parent of: Powder House at Combe Martin Silver Mine (Building)
MDV76273Parent of: Quarry to West of Longpark Cottage, Marystow (Monument)
MDV41478Parent of: Williams' Shaft, Combe Martin Silver Mine (Monument)
MDV41478Related to: Williams' Shaft, Combe Martin Silver Mine (Monument)
MDV41489Part of: Vivian's Shaft (Monument)
MDV41489Related to: Vivian's Shaft (Monument)
MDV63961Related to: Adit by the River Umber near Water Lane, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV63960Related to: Adit near Church Street, Come Martin (Monument)
MDV41480Related to: Adit, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV41485Related to: Adit, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV55766Related to: Adit, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV69307Related to: DAM in the Parish of Swimbridge (Monument)
MDV41483Related to: Director's Shaft (Monument)
MDV41484Related to: Goss Shaft, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV41482Related to: Harris' Shaft, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV106701Related to: Leat in Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV71188Related to: Leat, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV41486Related to: Maxwell's Shaft (Monument)
MDV106696Related to: Mill Pond to south of Mine Tenement, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV68307Related to: Mine Shafts north of Corner Lane, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV41488Related to: Place's Shaft, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV41481Related to: Shaft to east of Corner Lane, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV54885Related to: South Combe Martin Mine (Monument)
MDV41479Related to: Spoil Heaps at Rock House Farm (Monument)
MDV71666Related to: Stone Wall, Combe Martin (Monument)
MDV41487Related to: Thorne's Shaft (Monument)
MDV41489Part of: Vivian's Shaft (Monument)
MDV41489Related to: Vivian's Shaft (Monument)
MDV71187Related to: Waterwheel at Combe Martin Mine (Monument)
MDV41478Parent of: Williams' Shaft, Combe Martin Silver Mine (Monument)
MDV41478Related to: Williams' Shaft, Combe Martin Silver Mine (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV859 - Gradiometer & Resistance Surveys

Date Last Edited:Apr 11 2014 10:08AM