This website documents the 19th and early 20th century manganese mining industry of the former county of Merionethshire in north-west Wales.

Manganese was mined in north and mid Wales from possibly the third or fourth century [Williams 1995: 5] until 1945. In Merionethshire (now the Meirionnydd district of the county of Gwynedd) manganese was mined from around 1823 with the main periods of mining being (1) 1835–1840, when outcrops were worked on Foel Wen and near Barmouth, (2) 1884 to around 1900, when the major development of the Merioneth mines occurred, and (3) during the First World War (1914–1918) when a number of the mines reopened. Profitability of the mines was always marginal and in general the periods of activity correspond with high price or lack of availability of imported manganese. See History for a more detailed account of the historical aspects of manganese mining in Merionethshire.

This website has a page for each mine site, irrespective of any changes of name of the mine. Outline information is presented in a standard form for each mine and followed, as available, by more detailed notes, a mine plan and photographs. Note that:

Mines can be looked up from the alphabetical index of mines (which includes alternative names), from the summary of information available (which gives grid references, an indication of whether plans, photographs and mining statistics are available, and date of most recent visit), from the list of mines arranged by parishes and, in the case of the mines of the Arenig and Harlech Dome areas, from the Arenig and Harlech area maps.

Mine owners (companies or individuals) and other people associated with the industry can be found in the alphabetical index of owners, agents, miners and other people.

To provide context for the individual mines and their owners there is information about the geology of the area, a history of the industry and notes on the methods of mining, processing and transport.

With regard to the manganese industry generally, information is given about the uses of manganese and an account of the economics of manganese trade.

Further information is provided with notes on access and conservation, a glossary of Welsh place name elements, links to related websites (which will open in a new window) and a bibliography.

Finally, there is About these pages containing information about the website itself including how the data has been collected, spellings, copyright issues and how to contact the author with corrections or further material for the site, an Acknowledgements page and a Change log which details what has changed on the site and when.

This is a work in progress. I welcome comments, criticism, corrections, amendments and further information about the mines. All material used will be acknowledged. Contact me, Dave Linton,, telephone: 01341 280901.

Front pageIndex of minesArea maps: Arenig, Harlech