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Greenlaws - Quarry Level Dig (18/09/10).

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Having spent some time over the last year or so, researching about Greenlaws and photographing the dig that is going on at the Firestone Level, I got in touch with Helen to see about showing us her dig at Quarry Level and what has been opened up so far. I must stress that the level is on private land in the owners garden, and under no circumstances should you attempt entry without prior contact and permission from Helen, as she has an agreement with the land owner, to which all visitors must sign a disclaimer (this situation has now changed, there is a new owner of the house and land and they are not allowing anyone into the mine now (2011) ). We stopped by the landowners house and dropped of our signed disclaimer, proceeded through the garden into the wild part and there by the burn on the left hand side was the entrance to Quarry Level - ohhhh to have a mine like this in your doorstep.

The first few meters of the arched roof have fallen in, you still enter under an arch, but there is nothing above you. There is a large diameter water pipe going into the level for around 10m, where it meets a dam. Climbing over the dam we slipped into very cold waste deep water. The level from here runs pretty much straight in for just under 525m, where it meets the East Greenlaw's Vein. Looking back towards the adit it was possible to see a pin prick point of light. The junction here is sort of base camp, from which the first dig was started from. To the east the level continues on for maybe 50m or so and then hits a fall, the eastern forehead from the junction is at 295m. There are workings above the level in this section including a rise to the surface (Maddison's Day Rise). South from the junction enters a little flat working were I spotted a detonator tin cover in a pocket, and west is the main level in.

A little way in we came to the first dig, this was on J. Natrass's Rise. The dig here was timbered and looked a really good job, with nice timber joints. Past this we continued on passing a few small flats on the left hand side, some of which were backfilled. Along the way we saw a few artifacts: a hook, paraffin candle, and what looked to be a grease can. After some 250m we came to a rise, which I believe to be H. Whitfield's, further past this there was a little stope. Another 75m and we reached the site of the unfinished second dig. This is another collapsed rise, from my reckoning its W. Hewitson's Rise, but I could be wrong and the dig might be on the next rise along which is Ralph Natrrass's Rise - this goes all the way up to Middle Level. This area signals the start of the main workings, starting with the Hazel Drift. The second dig looks like its going to need quite a bit of work. Helen and crew has started jacking in motorway crash barriers to form part of the roof supports, but it could be long process to get through.

We retraced our route and took the opportunity to take photographs on the way back. A thank you for letting us have a look in.