UK

300ft Deep Mine Shaft Opens Just Yards From Cornwall Home

14/03/2016 12:38 GMT | Updated 14/03/2016 12:45 GMT

A bungalow in Cornwall has narrowly avoided being swallowed by a 300ft deep mine shaft. 

The gaping chasm – similar in appearance to those caused by sinkholes – opened in Scorrier, a region made famous by TV heartthrob Ross Poldark.

The shaft’s eye-watering depth has been explored by entrepreneurial local Mark Thomas, who set up a camera drone to fly above it.

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The mine shaft is at least 300ft deep 

Thomas, who filmed the video, wrote: “A massive mineshaft opens up under a garage at a house in Scorrier near Redruth in Cornwall.

 "This shaft is truly massive and is approximately 300ft to water and god knows how deep from there!"

The area has a rich mining heritage and is not far from a shaft that opened up next to the A30 last year, causing traffic chaos as engineers raced to repair it.

Stuart Dann from Mining Eye carries out mining surveys in Cornwall. He said: "It is easy to see the woods, fields and houses and assume nothing was there. 

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 "If you go back to 1750, the area was completely different there were dozens of engine houses and hundreds of shafts in the area, which probably looked a bit like a desert.

"It would be something almost unrecognisable, probably more like a foreign country than what we know.

"As mines closed, many put very large bits of timber across shafts and backfilled them, thinking this would be safe.

"Gradually all evidence of the engine houses and covered shafts went and we and builders before us assumed there was nothing there. 

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"Apart from on the old maps of course. The old maps often clearly detail the layout of various mines and where shafts are.

"It is these maps which mean the difference between buying a house which might fall down a hole, or one which sits on firm ground.

"This shaft opened up during one such mining investigation, where a drill rig was being used to check for voids beneath the surface.

"Structural engineers are deciding the future of the bungalow but cracks suggest that it may be joining a flooded piece of history, hundreds of metres underground."