Early 20th Century Arsenic Works at the Devon Great Consols Mine
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Early 20th Century
Devon County Council
West Devon Borough Council
Torridge and West Devon
SN426426 (242578, 73338)
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The arsenic works at Devon Great Consols Mine were built in about 1922, and comprise three calciners, a grinding mill and engine house, flues and baffle chamber, a further flue leading to an inspection chamber and chimney to the north. The calciners include two Brunton calciners and a reverberatory calciner. The process of extracting arsenic was as follows: Ore was crushed, probably by a steam-powered rolls crusher, and dressed by water wheel powered jiggers. It was then fed into the calcining furnaces. This heated it to about 1000 degrees farenheit, which transformed the arsenic content into a gas which was led along a flue to a condenser where it collected as a white 'soot' or powder. The refined arsenic had a variety of uses such as: metal alloy, clarifying glass, medicinal purposes and to create pigment in paint. The works are now Grade II listed and a Scheduled Monument. They are of national or international importance and contain nearly a full range of features. The site is contained within the World Heritage Site of the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape.
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