OA North has considerable experience of the recording of industrial landscapes, and particularly the upland lead mining sites of Northern England. Recent surveys include Bolton Gill and Keld Heads Mines, both in the Yorkshire Dales, and Greenside and Sandbeds mines in the Lake District. Particularly in the eighteenth and nineteenth century considerable efforts were made to win lead (sometimes called ‘grey gold’), and these lead mine complexes are extremely large; Keld Heads is the largest lead mine complex in Wensleydale and Greenside is the largest in the Lakes, each covering a couple of square kilometres. For the most part these landscapes have benefited from our ability to record landscapes quickly and accurately by photogrammetry using UAVs (drones), which are able to record in considerable detail the huge spoil heaps, numerous mine shafts, adits, buddles, hushes, large dressing floors, wheel pits, leats, standing buildings, engine houses, and trackways that make up these landscapes.

Archaeologically these landscapes are 'veritable grey gold mines', and are both fascinating and important parts of the history of the uplands; not least of which they demonstrate how what we now perceive as the unspoilt 'wildernesses' of the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales have in the past been heavily worked by man.


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