Geevor Tin Mine, Cornwall

Located in the village of Pendeen, Cornwall, Geevor Tin Mine is the largest preserved mine site in the UK.  After closing as a working mine in 1990, it has operated as a museum since August 1993.

The Victory Shaft was the main hoisting shaft at Geevor for miners, materials and rock.  In 1954, galvanised steel headgear was erected over the original timber headgear, which was then subsequently dismantled.  The steel headgear had experienced weathering over the years and Taziker was awarded a contract to restore and refurbish the structure on behalf of Cormac Solutions Ltd.

The challenge

Taziker’s scope of the works included encapsulation, surface preparation, protective coatings, timber and steelwork repair and replacement, and installation of a new GRP landing support frame.

Located on a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the multi-award-winning heritage attraction and museum remained open and fully operational during our work, therefore we had to be conscious of noise and respecting the public. Additionally, we also had to consider the location of the site on the North Atlantic Coast with regards to the changing weather. Storm Eunice also hit the UK whilst we were carrying out works.

The solution

In order to protect the public and the site, a compound with password protected entrances and clear signage was set up by the client.  With regards to any noise created by our work, especially during the grit-blasting stage, we installed a decibel meter to monitor the levels, as well as working outside of the museums opening hours.

As the scaffolding was originally intended for inspection, we assisted the erection by advising on tailoring the system to facilitate our grit-blasting and painting works.

Due to us needing a winch to remove the old steelwork and flooring from the structure to the ground, we had to ensure that the weather was at an acceptable state for us to work with the winch. The weather was checked before work started each day and was monitored throughout the day for the safety of our operatives and to prevent any damage caused to the scaffold, site compound or neighbouring buildings.

When installing the encapsulation, we concentrated on the side of the scaffold that was sheltered from the wind (predominantly the north-east elevation), and when the wind subsided, we moved onto the sea-facing north-west elevation.  This enabled our team to work safely and install the encapsulation effectively during periods of challenging weather.

The result

Our work took place over a 16-week period and the project was completed on time and to budget. Geevor Tin Mine continued to operate and welcome visitors during our time on site, with no health and safety issues occurring.

This project required close collaboration with our client Cormac Solutions Ltd, Geevor Tin Mine Museum, Cornwall Council, Historic England and local interest groups.  We worked closely with all our partners to ensure the project was completed to the specification and with the upmost respect to all parties’ requirements.

The Victory Shaft headgear has been restored and repaired and will continue to attract visitors to the site for many years, with the benefit of looking as good as new.  With a new protective coating applied, the structure is pleasing to the local landscape and gives a better impression to visitors of the museum.  The repairs made will ensure the structure endures and remains safe.

Additionally, the landing support frame works were awarded off the back of our works to the main structure, and we proposed to replace the existing degraded timber with wood-effect FRP due to its durability, meaning less maintenance will be required.

Feb 2022 - Oct 2022

The scope of the works included:

  • Encapsulation
  • Surface preparation and protective coatings
  • Timber and steelwork repair and replacement
  • Installation of a new GRP landing support frame

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