workings of Barneycraig Mine were via surface shafts, the Low, Middle and High
Whimsey's. These accessed the Barneycraig Vein before the driving of the horse
level from the surface.
The Barneycraig Horse Level was started around
1760 by the Beaumont Company. The level starts underneath the Great Limestone
and runs straight for over 1110m, it then branches west towards the Low
Coalcleugh Vein via the Flank Level. The main level carries past this for a
further 880m, first reaching the Whitewood Vein on the east side, which is the
continuation of Rampgill Vein and then the Barneycraig Vein on the west side,
which connects with Rampgill Mine. The Barneycraig Vein continues on the east
side and connects with Swinhope Low Level, where it is known as Williams Vein.
Another major level driven internally was the Galloway Level. This was located
in the shale above the Great Limestone and followed both Barneycraig and
Whitewood Veins, terminating near the county boundary.
levels, Mowbrays's and Whetstone Mea where driven from the surface above the
Barneycraig Horse Level on the vein of the same name testing the higher
horizons, but nothing of importance was found. Whetstone Mea was worked for
The workings on the west side of the Barneycraig Level became
active between 1808 and 1823 and proved to be very rich in the belt of the
great limestone and many large flats were discovered. By 1880 the vein was
regarded as being exhausted for lead by the Beaumont Company.
it was reopened by the Vieille Montagne Zinc Company and reworked for zinc ore.
The Vieille Montagne Zinc Company drove their workings from Rampgill Shaft in
Rampgill Mine to join the Barneycraig Level and the Four Fathom Limestone
Level, 16m and 40m below the Rampgill Horse Level horizon. All the ore from the
Barneycraig and Four Fathom Limestone Levels was taken to Rampgill Shaft and
brought to the surface via the Rampgill portal.
The level today is
blocked and there is no link to the Barneycraig Vein, though it does continue
in for a considerable distance. There was a major attempt at digging near the
Flank Level junction, but this was thwarted by very bad air - a combination of
low oxygen and high carbon dioxide levels.