Some evenings I like to walk to abandoned mines by myself and get changed into a dress in a creepy engine house… anyone else?! Cononley lead mine is one of Yorkshire’s hidden gems. Located not far from Skipton this was Yorkshire’s most southern lead mine. While Lead mining has been carried out in the Yorkshire Dales since Roman times, most are abandoned now. You may have heard of Gunnerside lead mine in the Yorkshire Dales but you probably won’t have heard of Cononley lead mine. Read on how to find Yorkshire’s secret abandoned mine!
- Getting to Cononley Lead Mine
- History of Cononley Mine
- Best time of day to go to Cononley lead mine
- How much does it cost to visit Cononley lead mine?
- How long should I spend at Cononley lead mine?
- Photography tips for Cononley lead mine?
- Things to do near Cononley lead mine?
- Amenities near Cononley lead mine
Getting to Cononley Lead Mine
Are you wondering where is Cononley Lead mine? Cononley is a beautiful small village just outside of Skipton in West Yorkshire. It has its own train station and lots of lovely pubs. There are two ways you can get to Cononley lead mine, one is by driving and the other is by getting the train and walking up!
If you would like to get to Cononley lead mine by public transport hop on a train to Cononley. There are good links from Leeds, Shipley and Skipton to Cononley. Once you arrive in Cononley, head up the high street until you reach the Cononley village institute then you will start to go upwards!
The path to Cononley lead mine is straightforward and takes you through some lovely little lanes and over lush green fields. You will be treated to great views of Airedale, the Yorkshire Dales and Skipton too! I have added an image of how to get to Cononley lead mine by walking from Cononley below. It will take around 30 to 40 mins to reach the mine on foot from Cononley train station.
If you live on the line between Leeds and Skipton, you can even visit Cononley lead mine after work in summer and have a fun midweek adventure!
If you are driving to Cononley lead mine, you can drive very close to the mine and park nearby. This is where the lead mine is.
History of Cononley lead mine
Cononley lead mine was Yorkshire’s most Southern lead mine. The area was mined from the mid-fifteen hundreds when permission was granted from Henry VIII. Miners from Derbyshire, Cornwall and Wales came to work the mine which increased the population of Cononley rapidly. The current ruins date from 1840 and are now a grade II listed site.
Best time of day to go to Cononley lead mine
The best time to visit Cononley lead mine is sunset. It is quite breath-taking seeing the sun set behind the mine. In summer, the surrounding purple heather also adds to the magnificence of this abandoned place. I imagine that Cononley lead mine would also be very pretty coated in a dusting of snow too.
Bring a picnic and your loved one then head to Cononley lead mine one evening. You can sit on the hill next to the mine and enjoy the sunset from there.
How much does it cost to visit Cononley lead mine?
The best thing about visiting Cononley lead mine is that it is free to visit! You do not have to pay to visit Cononley lead mine. How amazing is it that it is free to visit the amazing grade II listed site!?
How long should I spend at Cononley lead mine?
You can spend as long as you like at Cononley lead mine. I visited one evening and spent over an hour taking various photos from different viewpoints before watching the sunset. If you would just like to see it, 5-10 minutes may be enough to walk around the main mine shaft and enter the overgrown engine house. I love that the engine house has not been locked up so you can open the creepy gate and go inside! Otherwise, as suggested above, you could make an evening of your visit to Cononley lead mine by bringing a picnic and watching the sunset beyond the ruin.
Photography tips for Cononley lead mine?
Cononley lead mine is a great photography spot in West Yorkshire. Photographers will love the various spots around Cononley lead mine and get some great pics!
- Firstly, bring a tripod. This will really help around sunset when shooting directly into the sun. you can adjust the exposure so the engine house is not just a black silhouette.
- Get high – stumble up the hill to take photos of Cononley lead mine. It is a great place to capture the whole mine and see the hills beyond.
- Get low – if you visit Cononley lead mine during the heather get low to take some cool photos of the heather and the mine.
- Do you want green or grey? One of the great things about this spot for photographers is that you can capture two very different moods. From one side, the site is green surrounded by green hills and green grass. Yet if you walk down onto the gravel mounds, you can capture a photo which has a much more industrial feeling.
Amenities near Cononley lead mine
Cononley lead mine is close to a few farm houses but apart from that, the closest amenities are in Cononley. After visiting Cononley lead mine head into the village of Cononley where there is a village shop, a few pubs as well as a train station.
Things to do near Cononley lead mine?
There are plenty of things to do near Cononley lead mine. You can combine your visit with a trip to the salt and pepper towers in nearby Sutton-in-Craven. Alternatively, Cononley is very close to the bustling market town of Skipton on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales national park. There is a castle in Skipton as well as pretty canal side walks. Ilkley moor is also not too far away. There are many wonderful things to do in Yorkshire you are spoilt for choice!
Would you like to visit Cononley lead mine?
Have you been inspired to visit this abandoned lead mine in Cononley? Would you like to walk up to Cononley lead mine one evening to see the sunset? Have you already visited? Let us know in the comments below!