The Peak District was one of the largest, richest and longest worked orefields in Britain and this country was Europes main supplier of lead for many centuries.
However, many of the surface remains of the lead mining industry in the Peak District have been lost in the last hundred years. Only about a quarter of what once existed now survives in reasonable condition and degradation continues, mainly through mineral operations and agricultural activity.
The surviving lead mining remains of the Peak District are nationally and in some cases internationally significant.
English Heritage, Natural England and the Peak District National Park Authority are working in partnership to raise awareness of the loss of lead mining heritage at a national and regional level and are working together to secure the conservation of the lead legacy in the Peak District.
Two publications have been produced. The first “The Lead Legacy” (2004) and the second, “The Lead Legacy: An Updated Inventory of the Important Metal and Gangue Mining Sites in the Peak District” in the Journal of the Peak District Mining Historical Society with an expanded inventory with archaeological, ecological and geological notes on sites where appropriate. This represents the culmination of a major project by the Peak District National Park Authority to document and record the varied interests on lead rakes with the aim of conserving those of the highest interest.
Publication of these reports has been grant aided by English Heritage and the Peak District National Park Authority.
The Lead Legacy report (2004)
All files are in PDF format.
Complete Lead Legacy report (4.5MB)
Contents and Introduction (260KB)
Chapter 1 Lead Mining in the Peak - An Introduction (425KB)
Chapter 2 The Origins and History of Lead Rakes (315KB)
Chapter 3 The Special Character of Lead Rakes Today (420KB)
Chapter 4 Survival and Loss of the Lead Mining Resource (350KB)
Chapter 5 Towards Conservation of Important Lead Mining Sites and Landscapes (390KB)
Chapter 6 Conservation Opportunities and Challenges: Case Studies (250KB)
Chapter 7 Future Conservation - Challenges and Opportunities (400KB)
Chapter 8 Lead Rakes for the Future: The Way Ahead (180KB)
The Inventories (930KB)
The Lead Legacy: An Updated Inventory of the Important Metal and Gangue Mining Sites in the Peak District (2014)
The Lead Legacy - 2014 update (11.3MB)
Lead Legacy factsheet (256KB)
Lead Rakes leaflet (905KB)