I am ashamed to say at the age of 54 this is the first time I have visited this place. As a true Cornishman I thought I already knew a lot about the China Clay Industry(ha). I live only a few miles from one of their biggest pits in cornwall (now closed), I did a project about the clay industry in my 1st year at university, however, in a few hours at Wheal Martyn I learn’t so much more about mid-Cornwall’s major industry than I ever knew before I went.
This place is immensely informative. The outside exhibits I found fascinating. I loved the original crib hut and the 35ft working water wheel.
I already knew that china clay was washed off the quarry walls with a high pressure hose or “monitors” but it wasn’t until I looked over the edge of the Pit to see it happening that i realised that it was really done this way.
The whole process is on show here in Wheal Martyn including a walk to a viewing platform overlooking Greensplatt pit where the monitors can be seen doing their job. The walks around the site are lovely. I went in march before the season has started and it was nice to wander around by ourselves. I am sure a summer visit would be very nice as you could enjoy the nature trail more.
Don’t drive past this place thinking it may be boring, it really is worth a look. You will learn so much about Cornish history.