The Shaft Project

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To descend underground on our new tour visitors will need to travel down the main shaft. The shaft between level 3 and level 9 (143 meters or 472 feet of shaft) has had a major refurbishment to allow it to be certified for visitors to ride in. These works have included the following:

  • Installation of corner battens to 'tie together' the shaft timbers
  • Installation of new skid bolts that retain the skids, which guide the cages, to the sides of the shaft (there were hundreds of these!)
  • 35 six meter long galvanised steel ladders were installed, all of the fabrication work was done in-house. This was a huge job and you can find out more by clicking here.
  • We are now working on installing the electrical interlock system for the plat gates underground which will stop the winder should any gate inadvertently get open when it shouldn’t.

Did you know?
The long timbers across the shaft are 14ft long and are dropped down in one piece. When the shaft was originally timbered, they would sink anything up to 50ft before they would start to timber up to the previous “lift” of timber. So they actually timber up in lifts, not down. All the timbers are held in place by being packed behind with loose rocks. The shaft timbers were true craftsmanship.


A huge part of the Shaft Project was the refurbishment of the Ladderway.
Click here to find out more...