There are many reasons why visitors are attracted to the gaunt relic of the Magpie Mine, high on the moors above Bakewell and Ashford in the Water. They may be historians, photographers or walkers, or they may simply come across the place by chance. However, there's more to Magpie Mine than meets the eye.
The surface remains of Magpie Mine are one of the best examples in Britain of an 18th, 19th and 20th century lead mine. It was the last working lead mine in the Peak District, finally closing in 1958. Now a Scheduled Monument, the site is preserved by the Peak District Mines Historical Society.
There will be an opportunity to learn more of the mine's fascinating history – the years of boom and bust, the alleged 'murders' and the 'Widow's Curse' – at the Society's Heritage Open Day on Sunday 10th September 2023.
The Heritage Open Day event will include free guided tours (lasting around an hour) of the buildings and other surface features of the mine. Tours will start on the hour, every hour, from 11am until 4pm, and more frequently if it gets busy. No booking is required – just turn up. Free tea and coffee will be available throughout the day.
Sturdy footwear is advised because parts of the site are quite rough. Since it is quite exposed at over 1000ft above sea level on the limestone plateau, the weather can be inclement as well, so a wind- and waterproof jacket is advisable.
There is no vehicle access to the mine site, but cars can be left on the road close to the mine. A short walk along a track leads to the mine itself, which is situated near the village of Sheldon, not far from Bakewell. The event will be signposted from the A6 at Ashford-in-the-Water and other roads which lead to the site. Use postcode DE45 1QU to find us on sat-nav.
The Heritage Open Day event is free, but donations towards the upkeep of this historic site will be very welcome.