Industrial Archaeology of Snowdonia and Anglesey.

An Historical Gazetteer by Dr. K. A. Jaggers, C.Eng., M.I.E.E.

This page has been added to advertise this historic document that was originally produced in the late 1960's and has now just been made available to read on Dr Keith Jaggers' website HERE

Similar material and some of Keith's and my photos and research may possibly appear in another similar project by Mumford Books. Note that Keith and myself are no longer involved with this project by Mike Mumford, Mumford Books or Landscape Guides.

Robert Stephenson's Britannia Tubular Railway Bridge that carried the Chester & Holyhead Railway (later L&NWR) across the Menai Strait. 

For views of the Penmon Limestone Quarries where the stone for both bridges was quarried and cut, click the link below:



To find out all about the bridges and other local history check out the MBCHT. It is highly recommended that you arrange a visit to see the collection.


Port Penrhyn Cast Iron Bridge 

The old cast iron bridge was removed many years ago during the construction of the Dinorwic Hydroelectric scheme. Very large and heavy machinery was shipped to the port and transferred to Llanberis by road. This old bridge had to be replaced with a massive reinforced concrete slab to carry the loads. The old bridge arches were dismantled and dumped just off the right of the photo in the undergrowth for many years. They were recently moved to clear the site and are now safely inside the Penrhyn estate grounds. There are no plans for them, but at least they are safe.

Edward Gordon Lord Penrhyn plaque

The latest find is this marble plaque of Lord Penrhyn that celebrated the opening of the East Wing of the old Caernarvonshire & Anglesey Infirmary in Bangor, Gwynedd. It is in the process of being transferred to the Bangor Museum.

Edward Gordon Lord Penrhyn
C&A Caernarfon and Anglesey Hospital Infirmary

Robert Stephenson plaque:

This recently discovered bust of Robert Stephenson (approx 1m diameter) is hidden in a roof space above a modern suspended ceiling at the L&NWR Institute, Bangor, North Wales. Taken with a powerful telephoto lens and flash as closer proximity is impossible. The building is about to be demolished to make way for even more student flats, but the plaque has been saved.

(the black lines are dirty cobwebs)

Robert Stephenson plaque

The roof space in which the bust was discovered. The modern suspended ceiling is just visible at the bottom.


Remains of a metal planing machine of unknown make at Maenoferren Quarry workshops near Blaenau Ffestiniog.


Below are three photos of a Turner Slate planer. This is the LAST one in the cutting shed and had been vandalised when I found it. I struggled to lift the top adjusting shaft and handwheels back into place before taking the photo.


ABOVE: HDR Panorama of a workshop at Maenoferren Quarry, Blaenau Ffestiniog. This comprises 33 photographs all taken with the camera hand held. 

Industrial Archaeology of Snowdonia and Anglesey.

The original manuscript was divided into 29 chapters that each covered a geographical area of the old counties of Caernarfonshire and Anglesey with a few diversions into Merionethshire and even Denbighshire.

Since then the county boundaries have changed and so, the title now loosely covers Snowdonia and Anglesey.

Each chapter represents an area that can be reasonably comfortably visited in a day or so and lists the various locations of interest to be found there. This means one doesn't have to search the book for all the various items of interest to be found in one place if the chapters had been arranged in subjects rather than in areas as in this highly practical guide.

One can only applaud the concept as it must be of great benefit not only to the professional industrial archaeologist, but to the general public with a more general interest in what can be seen while visiting any particular area.

The 29 chapters will have numerous photographs, video clips, sale catalogues, and press cuttings especially in chapter 20 that covers the mighty Dinorwic Quarries at Llanberis together with the old village tramroad of 1924 and the 1843 Padarn Railway (later Dinorwic Quarries Railway) to Port Dinorwic. The quarry hospital will also be covered as little is available on the internet about this highly significant hospital that was at the fore front of the use of X-Rays. The hospital also performed some major operations and the quarry workshops even made artificial limbs.  As one can appreciate this chapter will initially take up the 'lion's share' of the project mainly due to the vast amount of information presently available and still coming to light as this is being written. Recently a pair of pre-1870 magic lantern slides come to light, one showing two magnificent man operated 4 ft gauge velocipedes at Llyn Peris opposite Dolbadarn Castle and the second even more significant image of a train of 4 ft gauge transporter (host) wagons carrying 2 ft gauge slate wagons of an earlier design to those seen today at the National Slate Museum. The most exciting find was to see the tall stove pipe chimney of an Alfred Horlock of Northfleet, Kent locomotive (Fire Queen or Jenny Lind) at the far end of the train.

These new images have been scanned to a very high resolution and can be printed to over 1m square!

This record will become a living archive that can be updated over the years as information about artifacts and locations change. Contributors are welcome to pass such information to Keith Jaggers via his website for enhancement and continuous updates that will inevitably be required to keep the information as accurate as possible.

Make a free website with Yola