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Great Orme
Copper Mines


History & Archeology






The Great OrmeThe Great Ormeís Head, Llandudno, is an isolated promontory of Carboniferous Limestone that rises to nearly 225 metres above sea level. Great Orme Mines are situated within the picturesque surroundings of the Great Orme Country Park only one mile from the centre of Llandudno. Copper has been mined here for 4,000 years and the site is the only Bronze Age copper mine open to the public in the world.

There is a visitor centre, open to non-mine visitors, with displays depicting life and times in the Bronze Age together with archaeological finds and artefacts. An audiovisual presentation sets the scene for your exploration. of the underground workings. One section of the mine is open for you to see for yourselves a small part of this vast underground mining complex. The visitor route follows some of the 35 mineral veins that were mined on the Great Orme Exploring the 3,500 year old passages. The tunnels eventually reach a point where you can view a large and impressive Bronze Age cavern. Numerous animal bones have been found in this cavern together with two human collar bones, which are now on display in the Visitorís Centre. You can then walk around the prehistoric landscape uncovered in 1987 and look down the 470 foot Vivianís shaft that was used in the 19th century for both pumping water and winding up the ore. A small exhibition shows you how our ancestors turned rock into metal.

History and Archeology >>