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:MDV66454
Name:Counting House later becoming a Mansion at Eylesbarrow Tin Mine


Counting house building (h) later becoming a mansion known as Ellisborough House forming part of the 19th century Eylesbarrow Tin Mine. Part of a complex of mine buildings situated near the centre of Eylesbarrow Tin Mine. The complex includes two powder houses, a blacksmiths workshop and count house, all of which are depicted and named on a map dated 1825. The buildings were surveyed as part of an English Heritage archaeological field survey of the tin mine in 1999 and traces of the buildings were visible as earthworks.


Grid Reference:SX 598 681
Map Sheet:SX56NE
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishSheepstor
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishSHEEPSTOR

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • National Monuments Record: SX56NE260
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX56NE/27/44
  • Old SAM Ref: 34467

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • COUNTING HOUSE (XIX - 1814 AD to 1825 AD (Between))
  • MANSION HOUSE (XIX - 1823 AD to 1825 AD (Between))

Full description

Devon County Council, 1838-1848, Tithe Mosaic, approximately 1838-1848 (Cartographic). SDV349431.

Building shown in red on the 19th century Tithe Map indicating that it was in use at that time.

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

Building shown on 19th century map.

Cook, R. M. L., 1974, Eylesbarrow (1814- 1852): A Study of a Dartmoor Tin Mine, 161-214 (Article in Serial). SDV231127.

Described by Cook.

Gerrard, S., 1990-2002, Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset., MPP 157233 (Report - Survey). SDV277946.

Site visited on 9th May 2002. Account house, 430 metres south-south-west of Eylesbarrow, forming part of Eylesbarrow Tin Mine. A large at least seven roomed structure of more than one phase. Built of mortared granite double faced walling measuring 0.6 metres wide and up to 1.5 metres high. The rooms are filled with large quantities of loose rubble. The walls were originally rendered and this still survives in a few isolated places. Recently been consolidated in places. Grass and nettles. This is the account house which is also known as the mansion house.

Robertson, J. G., 1994, The Archaeology of the Upper Plym Valley (Post-Graduate Thesis). SDV139549.

Depicted and described by Robertson.

Greeves, T. A. P., 1997, Tin Stamping Mills of Dartmoor after AD 1750 (Article in Serial). SDV346020.

Building with several internal divisions shown on aerial photograph.

Newman, P., 1999, Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine, 142, Figure 2 (Article in Serial). SDV231130.

Newman, P., 1999, Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine, 38, Figure 2 (Report - Survey). SDV352201.

For documentary references and full description see EH 1999.

English Heritage, 2005, Survey Information (miscellaneous date) (Report - Survey). SDV345855.

Building shown on survey.

English Heritage, 2013, Eylesbarrow Tin Mine and associated remains (Schedule Document). SDV231131.

The 19th century Eylesbarrow Tin Mine opened in 1814 and continued until 1852. During this time several companies were formed to run the mine and most failed to make a profit. Eylesbarrow's importance stems from its unrivalled array of 19th century mining remains making it the largest and most informative example of a large scale water powered tin mine in Britain. At least 27 shafts and five adits were cut to reach the tin lodes, seven whim platforms and two water powered engine wheels were built to power the lifting and pumping machinery, a series of tramways were made to carry the ore to six separate stamping mills and, to complete the picture, a smelting house was constructed to smelt the processed tin from the stamping mills. The size of the operation is further emphasised by the large number of ancillary buildings constructed to serve the mine. Amongst these are a count house, dormitory accommodation, blacksmith's shop, powder houses, sample house and various storage buildings.

Ordnance Survey, 2014, MasterMap (Cartographic). SDV355681.

Building shown on modern mapping.

National Monument Record, 2014, Pastscape (Website). SDV355682.

(30/09/1999) A range of ancillary buildings sited near the centre of Eylesbarrow Mine (SX 56 NE 108), which operated between 1814 and 1852. The buildings are depicted and named on a map of the site dated 1825.
The buildings are grouped in a complex, which spreads around the junction of the main Eylesbarrow track and the Wheal Katherine track. The barrack and the sample house (SX 5982 6819) were probably constructed mainly from timber and survive today as revetted stone wall foundations sunk 1.3m into the base of an old tinwork. There is little fallen stone suggesting that the remaining walls are the sum of the stone structure. Two powder houses (SX 5985 6198 and SX 5981 6810) were positioned at the extreme east and south of the buildings complex. Both are small, the former has approximate interior dimensions of 1.6m. The timber house (SX 5985 6812) was probably also of timber construction as only a stone foundation survives today. It has internal dimensions 13.5 by 7.6 m. Running lengthwise along the building are traces of a stone lined trench which is likely to have been a saw pit. The blacksmith's shop (SX 5991 6813) consists of three conjoined rectangular structures, all ruined to a little above ground level. The central section appears to have been open fronted. The overall length is approximately 20m by 4.2m. The turf house (SX 5981 6812), the stone walls of which have survived better than most at the site, is likely to have been used for the storage of peat, the main fuel used in domestic fires on Dartmoor. The internal dimensions are 14.5m by 6.4m and there is one internal partition. The account house (SX 59816818) was probably altered some time after 1823 into the spacious dwelling which the ruins now reflect. This was probably the mansion house described in later documentation and referred to as Ellisborough House on the Sheepstor Tithe map of 1843. It is constructed from dressed granite and measures 19.3m by 9.1m with walls surviving up to 2m high. It has several definable room partitions and two visible entrances. At some time in the late 1830s or early 1840s, some of the area around the building complex was enclosed to create several fields and a garden, totalling 2.5ha. The fields are recorded on the Tithe Apportionment and include arable and pasture and may represent some small-scale farming by captains and workers at then mine. Documentary reference to these enclosures is non-existent other than the Tithe map depiction.

Various, 2018-2020, PALs Condition Recording forms, WLK-DT36 (Worksheet). SDV362781.

Visited 19/9/2019. Building covered with grass and nettles. Overall condition very good. Photo taken.

Various, 2018-2020, PALs Condition Recording photographs, WLK-DT36 (Photograph). SDV363073.

Photo looking 130° showing grass and nettle cover.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV139549Post-Graduate Thesis: Robertson, J. G.. 1994. The Archaeology of the Upper Plym Valley. Edinburgh University. Unknown.
SDV231127Article in Serial: Cook, R. M. L.. 1974. Eylesbarrow (1814- 1852): A Study of a Dartmoor Tin Mine. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 106. Paperback Volume. 161-214.
SDV231130Article in Serial: Newman, P.. 1999. Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Society. 57. Paperback Volume. 142, Figure 2.
SDV231131Schedule Document: English Heritage. 2013. Eylesbarrow Tin Mine and associated remains. The Schedule of Monuments. Website.
SDV277946Report - Survey: Gerrard, S.. 1990-2002. Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset.. Monument Protection Programme. Archaeological Item Dataset.. Mixed Archive Material + Digital. MPP 157233.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV345855Report - Survey: English Heritage. 2005. Survey Information (miscellaneous date). English Heritage. Digital.
SDV346020Article in Serial: Greeves, T. A. P.. 1997. Tin Stamping Mills of Dartmoor after AD 1750. Dartmoor Magazine. 49. Paperback Volume.
SDV349431Cartographic: Devon County Council. 1838-1848. Tithe Mosaic, approximately 1838-1848. Digitised Tithe Map. Digital.
SDV352201Report - Survey: Newman, P.. 1999. Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine. English Heritage Survey Report. A4 Spiral Bound. 38, Figure 2.
SDV355681Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2014. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital. [Mapped feature: #98166 ]
SDV355682Website: National Monument Record. 2014. Pastscape. http://www.pastscape.org.uk. Website.
SDV362781Worksheet: Various. 2018-2020. PALs Condition Recording forms. PALs Condition Assessment Project Forms. Digital. WLK-DT36.
SDV363073Photograph: Various. 2018-2020. PALs Condition Recording photographs. PALs Condition Assessment Project Forms. Digital. WLK-DT36.

Associated Monuments

MDV66455Related to: Barracks at Eylesbarrow Tin Mine (Monument)
MDV66452Related to: Blacksmiths Workshop at Eylesbarrow Tin Mine (Building)
MDV66458Related to: Field System at Eylesbarrow Tin Mine (Monument)
MDV66457Related to: Powder Magazine at Eylesbarrow Tin Mine (Monument)
MDV105843Related to: Sample House at Eylesbarrow Tin Mine (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events

  • EDV4966 - Survey of Drizzlecombe, Eylesbarrow, Ditsworthy and Hartor. The Eylesbarrow archaeological landscape
  • EDV6239 - Eylesbarrow (Ailsborough) Tin Mine
  • EDV8155 - Plym Valley Survey: EH Project (Feb 2001 - Dec 2002)

Date Last Edited:Sep 7 2021 8:26AM