Skelton Park Ironstone Mine

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Skelton Park is the most complete set of ironstone mining buildings left in Cleveland, the mine was operated by Bell Brothers between 1872 and 1923, then Dorman Long through to 1938.
Skelton Park Site

The most substantial building on site is the Main Winding House, dated 1872. This housed a steam winding engine which wound cages in the adjacent 384ft deep downcast shaft. The roof of this building was intact until late 1994 when it finally succumbed to the elements.

Skelton Park Main Winding House  Skelton Park, Main Winding House and Downcast Shaft

Skelton Park Main Winding House Skelton Park Main Winding House

The largely intact Power House originally housed an air compressor for drilling and haulage, attached to this are a small ambulance room and time office.

Skelton Park, Power House Skelton Park, Power House

The impressive Schiele fanhouse building also houses the 378ft deep upcast shaft. The different coloured 8ft of bricks at the top of shaft date from its conversion to also be winding shaft as well as ventilation.

Skelton Park, Fanhouse and Shaft Skelton Park, Fan House and Upcast Shaft

Skelton Park, Fanhouse and Upcast Shaft Skelton Park, Upcast Shaft

Next to the fanhouse is a Secondary Winding House, its construction suggest it was modified for hauling in the upcast shaft and may originally have been used during construction of the downcast shaft which can be seen from the window.

Skelton Park, Secondary Winding House Skelton Park, Downcast Shaft

Numerous other ranges of mine buildings still exist, such as a saddlers shop and Provinder House used for preparation of feed for the horses.

Skelton Park, Saddlers Shop and Provender House 

Also a Blacksmiths and Joiners workshops.

Skelton Park, Blacksmiths Shop and Joiners Shop  

A substation from the electrification of the site in 1909 is shown below, the base of a chimney, weighbridge, boiler pump house, horse gins and a couple of powder magazines are also hidden away within the site. 

Skelton Park, Substation Skelton Park, Bell Brothers Brick

Please note that the mine site is on private land and the mine managers house approached from Skelton Ellers has been converted into a private residence so should not be visited. That said the path from Back Lane in Skelton is heavily used by dog walkers. A detailed survey of the site can be found in the excellent “Skelton Park Ironstone Mine” by Simon Chapman.

Skelton Park Site 



25 thoughts on “Skelton Park Ironstone Mine

  1. Have had another look at these excellent photographs and it has to be said that this really is a fantastic site. Does anyone know what the current status of the site is? Is it a working farm, or purely a residence? I believe from previous comments that the site is owned by S & G Estates but as we can see from South Skelton (another S & G plot?) they appear to have abandoned that site completely, with little attempt made to either keep the site in use or even secure it in any way.

  2. The buildings are listed, but unfortunately that also makes it very difficult to undertake repair work to stop them falling down.

  3. in terms of the surrounding land, it is largely a working farm, but mamanged from another farm in the area. I imagine the pople lving in the farmhouse have either rented or leased the building as a home. On that basis i guess the buildings are not put to any faming related use, as such buildings, for obviouls reasons, need to be secure

  4. I believe park house was sold in the late 80s ,the Thomas’s were the last tenents of Skelton estates .
    When they lived there I was a regular visitor and me and Ian who lived there at the time opened a door on a toilet building within the mine and thought’people have been in here recently’ as there was a lot of graffiti on the walls. When we read it it had been done by the miners,I remember one saying ‘Gerry is coming!’ and another with last train loaded and some names underneath .Why this was in the loo god only knows!
    Shame to see how much the site has deteriorated in the last 20yrs or so.

    Great site Chris,as I now live in Norfolk need a regular fix of good old Cleveland industrial remains

  5. The electric substation was built in 1910 and is similar to the one at Spawood – but Spawood was the first Cleveland mine to get an outside electric supply (from the new power station at Grangetown) so the sub-station there is possibly unique. As the supply was extended and more sub-stations were built they became standardised and differed in detail from Spawood e.g. the first floor is supported by a long rivetted girder on the front whereas other buildings used concrete instead.

  6. I live at park house now and the land is owned by \skelton Gill and the land around is farmed, this is private land but we have many visitors

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  8. great pictures and very ineresting,i live in whitby now but i lived in teesside when i was at school,did not know about the buildings at skelton,used to go to the old fanhouse [ss castle ]as it was known by us

  9. wow i wonder what it is like now…

    and great pictures i love them i wonder what it wold be like to be a miner now and to be one back then

  10. Used to mess about in those buildings way back in the late 60s/early 70s got chased away from there many a time

  11. i used to leave there 1987 !! the number of animals that randomly disappeared was surprising… down a shaft was always suspected… that house used to scare the crap out of me !! the house subsided by nearly 10 inches in 12 months so we moved before it disappeared as well!

  12. Is it OK to visit the mine or is it private land. I hope that one day it will be restord to proserve it for future generations.

    • Its private land although that has some some way to protecting it (even though the buildings are in a bad way)

      Cleveland Mining Heritage Society have been working there for a number of years to try an protect the buildings from further damage and decay.

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