Wheal Martyn’s Clay Works Project Underway

Wheal Martyn is delighted to announce that Heritage Cornwall Ltd have been appointed to complete phase one of its Clay Works project which will lead to the provision of new facilities and opportunities at the museum, for our communities to enjoy and be inspired by their china clay heritage.

This phase, which started in late January, includes works to preserve the roof of the Pan Kiln, build a hibernaculum (bat box), install new drainage/services to the Mica Dry building and create a new exit ramp from the historic buildings.  The Pan Kiln has been near-derelict for many years and is on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk Register. This work will restore the building and return it to use, enabling it to be removed from the Register soon.

This is an exciting time for Wheal Martyn as four years of hard work are now delivering real improvements to the buildings within the Wheal Martyn Clay Works which are protected as a Scheduled Monument.  Wheal Martyn remains very much open during the restoration works, which only affect a small part of the site – in fact, February is the perfect time to come along and purchase your reduced price, 12 month Cornwall Residents’ Pass, so that you can return throughout the year to witness the project unfold.  Information boards on site will keep visitors in touch with progress.

This phase of work should be completed by the end of March 2019 and we are currently finalising the plans for the second phase of work to restore the top level of the Mica Dry to contain a new gallery for temporary exhibitions; build an extension to the Mica Dry to house our new Learning and Activity Space; install a new permanent exhibition on the ‘Transport of China Clay’; and install updated interpretation through the Pan Kiln and Mica Dry.  We expect this second phase to be completed by the end of 2019 and look forward to opening the new facilities in Spring 2020.


Trialling activities for the new space is already well underway with an exciting selection of new opportunities for families and other visitors and this will continue throughout 2019.  Keep an eye on our website and social media for details of what is coming up.

Wheal Martyn is grateful to the wide range of organisations that have made this project possible – Heritage Lottery Fund, Arts Council England, the Garfield Weston Foundation, The Foyle Foundation, Historic England, The Pilgrim Trust, the Wolfson Foundation, Cornwall Council, Pennon Environmental Fund (Viridor Credits), Imerys Minerals Ltd, Cornwall Heritage Trust, The Hobson Charity and others.

For more information, please contact:

Julia Orchard

01726 850362




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