LLECHWEDD SLATE CAVERNS
Buried deep under the mountains of Snowdonia lies an extraordinary story: it’s a rock revolution that shaped the look and feel of the world as we know it. A way of life which built communities and defined generations of families in North Wales.
The story of slate began 500 million years ago, with deposits of mud and clay on an ancient seabed. Slate was used by Romans in the first century AD and by medieval kings to shore up their defences. But it wasn’t until the advent of the Industrial Revolution that demand for the mighty grey rock really exploded. At its peak, the slate industry in Wales employed an army of 17,000 men. By the end of the 19th century they were extracting half a million tonnes of slate per year and their hand-split wares were being exported to all four corners of the earth.
Journey back through time to the mid-nineteenth century. As you travel into the belly of Llechwedd’s mountain – on the steepest cable railway in Britain – you’ll experience some of the iconic sounds which have defined the last century and a half. The clock will turn back 160 years as you travel 500 feet underground.
Extraordinary light projection, enhanced reality technology and explosive special effects will transport you to another time and place. You’ll meet the mine’s owner and founder John Whitehead Greaves, and some of the men and boys who spent up to 12 hours a day, 6 days a week, working underground in semi-darkness.
The Deep Mine Tour is available in English and Welsh and runs every 30 minutes throughout the day. Please arrive 30 minutes in advance of your tour to be kitted up!