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poldark mine and Cornish heritage centre

  • places to visit
January 28, 2019

Since the incredibly popular TV show has hit the screen, The Poldark Mine has grown in popularity too, read about the real mine below


The Poldark TV show, starring Aiden Turner, follows Ross Poldark’s story of returning to Cornwall after the American War of Independence to find his life and inheritance in ruins. Poldark’s story develops as he is trying to help the people in the village while attempting to run the copper tin mines, the show has kick-started a whole new interest into the tin mining industry in Cornwall.


the poldark mine

The real Poldark Mine is less than a 30 minute drive from our own Mullion Cove Coastal Retreat and it is the only full tin mine open to the public in Cornwall. It has been giving guided tours to the underground Wheal Roots for over 45 years, the underground 18th Century tin mine stands at 11 degrees all year round, so it’s a nice place to cool down in the summer and can often feel warmer than the surface during the winter.

The mine is one of the most historic locations depicting the Cornish mining history, with the nearby Parish of Wendon as the oldest mining district in Cornwall and was the most populated by 1779. The process known as Tin Streaming started in the Bronze Age in the Cornish area, a ground-fast granite outcrop was used over 4000 years ago to pulverise the alluvial tin ore that was from the Cober River, this called the Trenear Mortar Stone and it’s listed as a Scheduled Ancient Monument of National Significance, and the only one of its kind in England.


the Cornish heritage collection

The historic mine and fascinating Heritage Collection is set in beautiful rural gardens, which are slowly being restored to their former glory, and in 2015 there was a bandstand added that has since gone on to host a number of concerts and play for all ages to enjoy.

Following a period of neglect the mine was actually closed in 2013 and had filed for bankruptcy, however, it was saved from this sad fate by the new owners in June 2014, who had restoration and a new educational policy of Cultural Heritage Management plans for the mine. The museum was relocated to a larger building and it has expanded with larger and brand-new exhibits every year since. There has also been a wonderful tea room added, with a coffee and refreshments counter, which overlooks the picturesque gardens.

The museum is home to a wide range of historic items, including the Tech-Tin and Copper section, which houses items from telecoms, teleprinters and telephones, which all rely on tin and copper parts internally to work. There are also artefacts from the famous Penny Lane, Methodist Chapel in Liverpool, such as the pulpit, a number of pews and even the large pipe organ. The team at the Heritage Centre are continuing to restore a variety of historic machines and collections found in lost sheds around the site.


The Poldark TV show has created a whole new interest in the Poldark Mine and its true history, which is even more fascinating than the show, having the first female owner ever. There are new exhibits consistently being added, and a large amount of restoration work in the grounds, including the striking Victorian house, there is so much to see here. Travel underground into the Poldark Tin Mine and feel what life would have been like for those forgotten miners who helped to shape the modern world.

The mine is only a 30 minute journey from our beautiful Mullion Cove Coastal Retreat, you can explore the mine and head back to our luxurious accommodation, which will have everything you could need for a self-catering holiday in South Cornwall. Including fully fitted kitchens, open plan living areas, beautiful bathrooms and sumptuous bedrooms all on offer in our lodge-style accommodation.

Book your holiday with us and start planning your holiday in South Cornwall today

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