A Taste of the
Peak District bell pit mines …
Mining in Derbyshire and the Peak District has been carried out for thousands of years. During that time, the miners have been employed by large companies or have worked as individual enterprises.
Clearly, the individuals will not have been able to afford the resources of the mining companies and have employed cheaper methods of extraction of minerals close to the surface, such as using bell pits.
The spoil for the initial shaft was piled up around the
shaft as it was sunk, giving the characteristic crater shape of old bell
As the vein was worked, new bell pits were dug as the existing ones became unsafe or worked out. In the small image below, you can see the characteristic pock-marks of bell pits that have followed the line of an ore vein near Bradbourne. These kind of features can be seen in many areas of the Peak District's White Peak (the area dominated by limestone geology).