Industrial History Online

Industrial History Online

Providence Engine Shaft

A section of the Providence Engine House wall is still standing (2021) alongside this former lead mines pumping shaft which is now a water filled hollow which suggests the shaft is still reasonably stable.
Historic mapping shows that to the north of the engine house there was an office and smithy, which are evident as earthworks, along with extensive water management in the forms of small ponds/dams and leats.
The Providence pumping engine was probably installed in 1802 to drain both the Providence and adjacent Prosperous lead mines with the burden of draining both these mines falling on this steam engine which lifted the flood water the 17 fathoms (102 feet/31m) to Wonderful Level, the mines main drainage adit driven at 650 feet AOD (198m) from further down Ashfold Side Gill. The cost of running the engine was a burden on the mines costs therefore within two years a new pumping shaft was sunk alongside the nearby Prosperous lead smelting mill which served both the Prosperous and Providence mines. The pumps on this Smelt Mill Shaft being driven by a triple underground waterwheel arrangement (see NYK02550) relying on a steady supply of water but in times of draught when the waterwheels were stopped and the lower mines workings flooded, the Providence steam engine had to work harder and was reported to constantly breakdown due to age and excess loading with the lower workings of the mines having reached 38 fathoms (228 feet/69m) below Wonderful Level by 1829.

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Key Words :- lead mine steam engine
Linked Sites :-
NYK02550,Prosperous Lead Smelting Mill
Address :- Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire
Grid Ref :- SE 11955 65949
Co-ordinates :- Lat - 54.089313 , Long - -1.818726
Local Authority :- Harrogate Borough Council
Pre 1974 County :- Yorkshire - West Riding
Site Condition :- Site derelict - some buildings remaining
Site Status :- Site extant - Protected status unknown
Contributor :- cc-by-nc-sa 4.0 © Andrew Garford - 29 July 2021