The Return of Llywernog Silver-Lead Mine’s Heritage Weekend: The ‘Boom Years’

1840: Mid Wales enters a Mining Boom. Mines to be grandly branded the California of Wales (Ponterwyd), Welsh Potosi, Silver Brook, Silver Stream, and Silver Mountain. The next three decades would see increased production, fortunes made, and hopes raised.

The Silver Mountain Experience, home of Llywernog Silver-Lead Mine near Aberystwyth, is again travelling back in time and warmly invites the public to join them in discovering a great bygone age! Its first Heritage Weekend, in 2018, was a great success, with mine machinery demonstrations, talks, displays, tours, activities and more. This returns for 2019 – Llywernog:1840 will explore the ‘Boom Years’.

With FREE ENTRY to the event (a suggested donation of £5 per person would be gratefully received to help support the preservation of this unique historic site*), there is an abundance of activities going on throughout the weekend which delve deep into this incredibly fascinating history.

The lovingly restored Blacksmith’s Forge in the original main mine building will open its doors for special full exclusive access during the Heritage Weekend only. This houses original tools and equipment, and there will be experts on hand to explain the processes involved in this skilled craftmanship, which was essential to the mining industry.

The ‘Miner’s Life’ guided tour**, special displays and exciting demonstrations put on for the Heritage Weekend will take you on a journey from ‘Hard Rock’ to ‘Heavy Metal’; you can discover how ore formed 485 million years ago was mined, processed and smelted. Step in to the footsteps of a miner and be immersed in the original and rare setting of the mine, both above and below ground.

See working waterwheels and mine machinery in action and visit the Mining Museum, which features new exhibits and information only recently added. The Miner’s Trail takes you around this unique historic site and allows you to see some of the best preserved mine buildings in the country. Llywernog Silver-Lead Mine dates back to the mid-1700s, and metal mining in Mid Wales back as far as 4,000 years ago – so there is a wealth to be discovered!

Interactive activities will be on offer to interest all ages. Try your hand at Gem Panning, where you can discover and take home a colourful selection of gems or ‘fool’s gold’**. Visit the Den and dress up as a Victorian – there will be plenty of photo opportunities!

Have an adventure on our Dragon’s Tale tour**, the epic new story ‘A Knight’s Quest’ returns by popular demand. This is perfect for the younger visitors! There’s also the Fossil Dig, Kindling’s Quest, the Silver Water Play area, the Nature Trail, and much more.

It is a great opportunity to explore the Silver Mountain Experience’s attractions and find out about their new features for 2019. The Annual Pass will be available to purchase at reception, and the gift shop will be open offering an array of interesting and unique items – from dragons to mining figures on minerals! Why not try an authentic Miner’s pasty in the café too?

The Mining Memorabilia stand also returns, where visitors will be able to see mining-era artefacts, documents, photographs and books brought in by local organisations and the community. We encourage visitors to share ‘Voices from the Past’ – tell us about your ancestors, share their stories, or bring any artefacts from the time. If you have something you think may be related to mining, bring it in and our mining experts will do their best to identify and tell you more about it!

The Heritage Weekend will run from 10am to 4pm on Saturday 30th & Sunday 31st March 2019, at the Silver Mountain Experience – located between Bwlch Nant Yr Arian and Ponterwyd on the A44, only 15 minutes’ drive from Aberystwyth and 30 minutes from Llanidloes.

This will be launching The Silver Mountain Experience’s 2019 season, which proves to be the best yet with more exciting features and events going on than ever before!

Keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter pages for more information coming soon!

*Entry is free, although a suggested donation of £5 per person would be gratefully received. All donations go to the Llywernog Silver-Lead Mine CIC to help support the preservation of this unique historic site, the only surviving Silver-Lead Mine in Wales open & accessible to the public.

**A supplementary charge is made for the guided tours and Gem Panning. All other activities and talks are free.

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