My photo postcard from West Penwith: Porth Nanven & Botallack mine ruins

West Penwith: Porth Nanven & Botallack mine ruins

A trip to almost the extreme west-most point of  England. Porth Nanven and Cot Valley just south of Cape Cornwall, are famous to ornithologists for rare birds, to geologists for an exposure of a series of rock layers chronicling the periglacial eras which overlay the granite, also egg-shaped boulders which were shaped by the action of the sea when water levels were much higher. And Porth Nanven beach is famous to landscape photographers for long exposure images of The Brisons, a granite outcrop a few hundred metres offshore.

Nearby at Botallack, Crown Mine worked submarine galleries extracting tin to surface buildings first constructed in 1720 for one of the earliest steam engines. Operations closed in 1914 and the ruins now also attract much photographic interest.
The £1 coin is included to show scale in my photo of one of the mineral seams: the whole Cornish tin, copper and arsenic mining effort in the eighteenth and nineteen centuries was directed to the extraction and purification of material something like this this.