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HER Number:MDV789
Name:Knap Down Mine, Combe Martin

Summary

Remains of silver lead mine, at east end of Corner Lane, include a ruined engine house and chimney, infilled shaft and spoil heaps. Also known as North Devon Mine.

Location

Grid Reference:SS 597 466
Map Sheet:SS54NE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishCombe Martin
DistrictNorth Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishCOMBE MARTIN

Protected Status

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SS54NE/6
  • SHINE Candidate (Yes)

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • MINE (XVI to XIX - 1501 AD to 1900 AD (Between))

Full description

de la Beche, H. T., 1839, Report on the Geology of Cornwall, Devon and West Somerset (Monograph). SDV337075.


Kingdon, E. V., 1867, Silver Mines at Combe Martin, 193-99 (Article in Serial). SDV81868.


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

'Knap Down Silver Lead Mine (Disused)' shown. Map object based on this Source.


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


Collins, J. H., 1912, Observations on the West of England Mining Region (Monograph). SDV323594.


Chope, R. P., 1912 - 1913, Silver Mines in Devonshire, 54-57 (Article in Serial). SDV337061.

Silver and lead are known to have been mined at Combe Martin during reign of Henry VII. In 1587 a new mine was found and mined for four years. The last cake of silver was processed into two cups - one for the City of London, the other for the Earl of Bath.


Chanter, J. G., 1916 - 1917, Combemartin Silver, 128 (Article in Serial). SDV344194.

The mines were closed in 1848, though opened again in 1875 without success.


Chope, R. P., 1918 - 1919, Thomas Bushell and the Combe Martin Mines, 34-41 (Article in Serial). SDV344201.

Thomas Bushell, a pupil of Bacon, was a farmer of the royal mines during the reign of Charles I and the civil war.


Veritas, 1918-1919, Combe Martin Silver Mines, 127 (Article in Serial). SDV344202.

Trewman's Exeter Flying Post of March 31st 1836 stated that the mines were looking prosperous. "The shares are greedily sought after, but the holders do not seem disposed to part with them".


Chope, R. P., 1920 - 1921, Combemartin Silver, 164-5 (Article in Serial). SDV344199.

Notes various ornaments made of silver mined at Combe Martin.


Cresswell, B. F., 1920 - 1921, Combemartin Silver, 206 (Article in Serial). SDV344200.

Notes various ornaments made of silver mined at Combe Martin.


Jenkins, R., 1920 - 1921, Combemartin Silver, 206-207 (Article in Serial). SDV344195.

Sale of mine in 1792 referred to.


Slee, A. H., 1938, Some Dead Industries of North Devon, 214-229 (Article in Serial). SDV60673.

References in Lysons' 'History of Devonshire' and the 1921 special report on mineral resources, page 21. Brief reference to silver mines at Combe Martin in an article on local industry.


Ramsden, J. V., 1952, Notes on the Mines of Devonshire, 92,97 (Article in Serial). SDV60737.

Nineteenth century, Combmartin; plans R155b - 1222 MRO; lead and silver. K7 Knap Down; lead. Other details: Figure 1.


Minchinton, W. E., 1973, Industrial Archaeology in Devon, 14 (Monograph). SDV7016.

Combe Martin silver and lead mine, famed for its silver in the thirteenth century, ceased working in 1490. Reopened in 1587 with the discovery of a new lode and worked intermittently until 1875. Shafts and adits are visible in the vicinity, but the chimney of the Knap Down mine is the only surface ruin.


Claughton, P. F., 1973, The Metalliferous Mines of North Devon and Exmoor, 6 (Article in Serial). SDV60739.

Knap Down Mine. Shafts and adits east-north-east of Silver Mines Farm. Site of ancient workings for silver-lead. Re-opened in 1836 by the Combe Martin and North Devon Mining Company but abandoned in 1846. Worked 1848 - circa 1850 as North Devon Wheal Rose, 1850 - circa 1859 as Nap Down Consols, and 1859 - 1867 by the North Devon Silver-lead Mining Company.


National Trust, 1984, Golden Cove, Berrynarbor, Great and Little Hangman, Devon, 9 (Report - Survey). SDV344205.

Other details: 100, 137.


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


Claughton, P., 1990, Lead and Silver-Lead Workings in North Devon (Report - non-specific). SDV362925.

Knap Down Mine, also known as the North Devon Mine. Situated on the high ground to the north east of the village. A compact group of workings on a number of intersecting lodes in an area immediately east of Silver Mines Farm. Commercial mining ceased circa 1869, but trials continued into the 1890s.

The engine house is currently listed Grade II. The shallow adit, is currently used as a water supply for the farm. The disturbed ground around Engine Shaft has been turned over for road fill, but once contained the dressing floors of the 1860's with waterwheel powered crusher. Water for that wheel and the floors was recycled through a separate shallow adit and pumps in the shaft.

The workings extended north of Corner Lane and to the east of Badgaver Lane, but the ground there has been rehabilitated. There were also minor worknigs in the Vlae of Girt, well to the north.


Cranstone, D., 1991, The Lead Industry (Report - non-specific). SDV90317.

Ruined engine house, infilled shaft and spoil tip. No pre-19th century features visible. Attractive features in prominent hilltop location. Other details: Site 6E.

Engine house merits protection as main visible relic of the Combe Martin mining industry. Rest of site not worth protecting.


Turton, S. D., 1992, Archaeological Assessment of SWW Combe Martin Water Supply, 2 (Report - Assessment). SDV73263.

Old Combe Martin Silver Mine. The workings of this silver-lead mine are spread over much of the floor and sides of the valley in which Combe Martin lies. It has been worked intermittently over the centuries, and the whole district is full of adits and shafts. May have formerly been known as Fayes Mine. Other details: Figure 2.


Reed, S. J., 1992, Archaeological Recording on the SWW Combe Martin Pipeline, 2 (Report - Survey). SDV73264.

No evidence of mine workings encountered during pipeline construction. Most of the workings were concentrated near the village of Combe Martin itself, and in this area the pipeline was laid within existing roads where observations were not possible. Other details: Figure 1.


Claughton, P., 1994, Silver-Lead - A Restricted Resource: Technological Choice in Devon Mines, 54-59 (Article in Serial). SDV337126.


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 800.


Collings, A. G. + Manning, P. T. + Valentin, J., 2007, The North Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Phase 1. Archaeological Survey. Summary Report, No. 800 (Report - Assessment). SDV339712.


National Monuments Record, 2010, 984054 (National Monuments Record Database). SDV344197.

The site of a lead and silver mine operated in the mid 19th century by the North Devon Silver Mine Company. An engine house built in approximately 1859 survives.


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

Map object based on this Source.


Sharp, J., Unknown, Untitled Source (Ground Photograph). SDV344204.

A black and white photograph of unknown date, but probably 1945-1960, showing the stack, buildings and spoilheap at Knap Down.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV323594Monograph: Collins, J. H.. 1912. Observations on the West of England Mining Region. Observations on the West of England Mining Region. Unknown.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV337061Article in Serial: Chope, R. P.. 1912 - 1913. Silver Mines in Devonshire. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 7.1. Unknown. 54-57.
SDV337075Monograph: de la Beche, H. T.. 1839. Report on the Geology of Cornwall, Devon and West Somerset. Report on the Geology of Cornwall, Devon and West Somerset. Unknown.
SDV337126Article in Serial: Claughton, P.. 1994. Silver-Lead - A Restricted Resource: Technological Choice in Devon Mines. Mining History: Bulletin PDMHS. 12, Number 3. Photocopy + Digital. 54-59.
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.
SDV344030Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2010. MasterMap. Ordnance Survey. Map (Digital).
SDV344194Article in Serial: Chanter, J. G.. 1916 - 1917. Combemartin Silver. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 9.1. Unknown. 128.
SDV344195Article in Serial: Jenkins, R.. 1920 - 1921. Combemartin Silver. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 11.1. Unknown. 206-207.
SDV344197National Monuments Record Database: National Monuments Record. 2010. 984054. National Monuments Record Index. Website.
SDV344199Article in Serial: Chope, R. P.. 1920 - 1921. Combemartin Silver. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 11.1. Unknown. 164-5.
SDV344200Article in Serial: Cresswell, B. F.. 1920 - 1921. Combemartin Silver. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 11.1. Unknown. 206.
SDV344201Article in Serial: Chope, R. P.. 1918 - 1919. Thomas Bushell and the Combe Martin Mines. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 10. Unknown. 34-41.
SDV344202Article in Serial: Veritas. 1918-1919. Combe Martin Silver Mines. Devon and Cornwall Notes and Queries. 10. Unknown. 127.
SDV344204Ground Photograph: Sharp, J.. Unknown. Photograph (Paper) + Digital.
SDV344205Report - Survey: National Trust. 1984. Golden Cove, Berrynarbor, Great and Little Hangman, Devon. National Trust Archaeological Survey Report. A4 Stapled + Digital. 9.
SDV60673Article in Serial: Slee, A. H.. 1938. Some Dead Industries of North Devon. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 70. A5 Hardback. 214-229.
SDV60737Article in Serial: Ramsden, J. V.. 1952. Notes on the Mines of Devonshire. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 84. A5 Hardback. 92,97.
SDV60739Article in Serial: Claughton, P. F.. 1973. The Metalliferous Mines of North Devon and Exmoor. Plymouth Mineral and Mining Club Journal. 4. A4 Stapled. 6.
SDV7016Monograph: Minchinton, W. E.. 1973. Industrial Archaeology in Devon. Industrial Archaeology in Devon. Paperback Volume. 14.
SDV73263Report - Assessment: Turton, S. D.. 1992. Archaeological Assessment of SWW Combe Martin Water Supply. Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit Report. 92.04. A4 Stapled + Digital. 2.
SDV73264Report - Survey: Reed, S. J.. 1992. Archaeological Recording on the SWW Combe Martin Pipeline. Exeter Museums Archaeological Field Unit Report. 92.24. A4 Stapled + Digital. 2.
SDV81860Correspondence: Claughton, P. F.. 1989. Mining Sites in the Combe Martin Area. Letter and Map. A4 Stapled.
SDV81868Article in Serial: Kingdon, E. V.. 1867. Silver Mines at Combe Martin. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 2. Unknown. 193-99.
SDV81869Article in Serial: Strong, H. W.. 1890. A Contribution to the Commercial History of Devonshire. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 22. Unknown. 131.
SDV90317Report - non-specific: Cranstone, D.. 1991. The Lead Industry. English Heritage Monuments Protection Programme Step 3 Site Assessments. A4 Unbound.

Associated Monuments

MDV31361Parent of: Engine House with Chimney at Knap Down Mine (Building)
MDV76283Parent of: Shaft at Knap Down Mine (Monument)
MDV74011Related to: Knap Down Farm, Scaper (Find Spot)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded


Date Last Edited:Mar 27 2019 3:02PM