Kitto’s Shaft Pumping Engine

The most easterly of South Caradon Mine’s shafts

The diversion of these posts into Man Engine related topics has left it at the easterly end of the South Caradon Sett, and so this is where it will resume its journey through the engine houses of this famous Cornish mine.

Kitto's Shaft at South Caradon Mine
Kitto’s Shaft looking East. The pumping engine is on the left.

This engine house is often overlooked by the many walkers that use the track from Tokenbury corner; its low remains hidden behind the tips upslope from the track.

The Shaft

The shaft was sunk as part of the mine’s extension eastwards across the southern slopes of Caradon Hill. An extension that followed the rich trio of long loads, including the famous South Caradon Caunter lode. This expansion occurred in 1862-64 after an extended lease was agreed with Rev. Norris.

The shaft was unusual in having three shafts, accessing three lodes, in three directions from one collar. NW, NNW, SE. This can be seen in Dr.Russ’s amazing model of underground Cornwall found on his facebook page. Abandoned Mine Models> 

Kitto’s shaft is best identified at 2:23 into the video.

The Engine

Like several engines on this mine, author’s disagree on its size. The Minions report and Kenneth Brown State 35″, but Webb and Geach state 32″. Either way it was not a particularly large engine.

The engine was located to the north of the shaft with its boiler house lying to the east. Only lower part of engine house remains, although substantial balance pit exists. The Chimney now only stands about 1 metre high.

Kitto's Shaft at South Caradon Mine
Kitto’s shaft looking north

Two sources of information to look out for

Exploring Cornish Mine’s Volume 2 is a great resource for anyone wishing to explore South Caradon Mine. It is written by Kenneth Brown and Bob Acton, but unfortunately is now out of print. The footnotes are well worth a read, for this is where Kenneth Brown’s technical and historical information can be found.
To find copies of the book on Amazon Click Here>

Copies of the Minions Archaeological Survey (by Adam Sharpe) are harder to find, it is worth trying Amazon once in a while though, just in case.

To find copies of the book on Amazon Click Here>

One thought on “Kitto’s Shaft Pumping Engine

  1. Pingback: Kitto’s Shaft area in maps | navsbooks

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