HeritageGateway - Home
Site Map
Text size: A A A
You are here: Home > > > > Devon & Dartmoor HER Result
Devon & Dartmoor HERPrintable version | About Devon & Dartmoor HER | Visit Devon & Dartmoor HER online...

See important guidance on the use of this record.

If you have any comments or new information about this record, please email us.

HER Number:MDV65833
Name:South Wheal Crebor, Tavistock


South Wheal Crebor, also known as New East Wheal Russell. Worked between 1816-1821 by the Tavistock Canal Company.


Grid Reference:SX 465 714
Map Sheet:SX47SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishGulworthy
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishTAVISTOCK HAMLETS

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX47SE/348

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • MINE (XIX - 1801 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

Richardson, P. H. G., 1992, The Mines of Dartmoor and the Tamar Valley after 1913, 131, 137 (Article in Serial). SDV323598.

New East Wheal Russell opened and prospected for arsenic in 1922-23 but was not actually reworked. Also known as South Crebor.

Newman, P., 2011, Mining in the Tavy Valley, West Devon. An Assessment of Archaeological Potential, 21, Fig 6 (Report - Assessment). SDV347105.

There is little documentary material regarding the origins and history of South Crebor Mine although undated ground disturbance caused by surface workings has been recorded to the west on Morwell Down. These probably represent medieval and post-medieval tin working. The 19th century workings apparently commenced between 1830 and 1840. In 1867 the South Wheal Crebor sett was worked under the name of New East (Wheal) Russell, although a plan and section of 1869 shows New East Russell to be undeveloped. A small ouput of copper was recorded from South Crebor in the early 1880s and the mine was wound up in 1883. Attempts were made to reopen but it is not known how successful this was. Surviving remains include the outline of an engine house and a cobbled dressing floor. Other details: No 8.

Buck, C., 2015, Buctor Farm, Tavistock (Report - Assessment). SDV359746.

This study was commissioned by the landowner on behalf of Natural England as part of a Higher Level Environmental Stewardship Agreement Scheme and produced by Cornwall Archaeological Unit, Cornwall Council.

Whilst the low lying masonry remains of South Wheal Crebor (Newman 2011, Site 10), are outside the eastern side of the stewardship landholding, the leat tunnel is within the site ownership. The South Wheal Crebor Mine Sett plan (1867: DHC T1258 M/E/14b, and reproduced in Newman 2011, fig 6), labels an ‘Adit’ at the northern end of the core mine site – close to the eastern end of this feature. This tunnel feature appears to allow water from the steep western side of the Tavy Valley (Stonage Rocks) mine workings to either enter the River Tavy, or to be re-used within the mine itself as a power or dressing water source. Another alternative functional interpretation could be that the tunnel was a cattle/sheep ‘creep’. (See MDV115958)
The tunnel portal is fully extant. Figure 19 shows the feature from the west side. It is approximately 3m high and 1.9m wide, built of granite stone with arched portals and killas stone interior. The stone has been revetted on both north and south sides of each embankment cutting, on both sides of the disused railway line. A build-up mound of earth and leaf mould slightly restricts visual evidence of both openings, and helps to retain water build within the tunnel.

The tunnel feature is within the landholding of Mr Hutchins. The feature is extant and in a relatively good condition.

The site should be retained, with a minimal amount of disturbance to the masonry and adit mouths. Any future reuse of the railway line will need to clear out this feature. The CEC survey (2015, Site 23) stated: ‘no obvious gaps for c

Waterhouse, R., 2017, The Tavistock Canal. Its History and Archaeology, 177-8, fig 6.29 (Monograph). SDV361789.

South Wheal Crebor
This narrow and intermittently productive working was largely worked above adit and exploited the eastern end of the southern Holming Beam lode on the side of the Tavy valley. Held initially by John Gill and John Taylor, it passed into the Tavistock Canal Company's management in around 1815 and appears to have been trialled between 1816-1821, with unknown results.
The majority of the surface remains are located in a narrow strip of woodland below the Shillamill to Bere Alston road, but these seem to be of mid-19th century date. The deep adit however contains an early 18th century fireset copper stope and is understood to have been re-opened and extended from around 1830, by the Tavistock Consolidated Mines Adventurers.
From 1860 to around 1880, the mine was worked as New East Russell and then briefly in the early 1920s.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV323598Article in Serial: Richardson, P. H. G.. 1992. The Mines of Dartmoor and the Tamar Valley after 1913. British Mining. 44. A5 Paperback. 131, 137.
SDV347105Report - Assessment: Newman, P.. 2011. Mining in the Tavy Valley, West Devon. An Assessment of Archaeological Potential. SW Landscape Investigations Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. 21, Fig 6. [Mapped feature: #42585 ]
SDV359746Report - Assessment: Buck, C.. 2015. Buctor Farm, Tavistock. Cornwall Archaeological Unit. 2015R055. Digital.
SDV361789Monograph: Waterhouse, R.. 2017. The Tavistock Canal. Its History and Archaeology. The Tavistock Canal. Its History and Archaeology. Paperback Volume. 177-8, fig 6.29.

Associated Monuments

MDV79913Parent of: Engine House at South Wheal Crebor, Tavistock (Monument)
MDV79916Parent of: Magazine at South Wheal Crebor, Tavistock (Monument)
MDV79915Parent of: Shaft at South Wheal Crebor, Tavistock (Monument)
MDV79914Parent of: Smithy at South Wheal Crebor, Tavistock (Monument)
MDV123232Related to: Tavistock Canal, Main record (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV7058 - Archaeological Management Plan, Buctor Farm, Tavistock (Ref: 2015R055)

Date Last Edited:Nov 1 2018 7:36PM