Author Topic: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe  (Read 1316 times)

Offline Madness

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Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« on: October 23, 2018, 01:11:33 pm »
Had a evening trip down Gentlewomans the other night. Judging by the nettles and brambles around the shaft top nobody has been down it for a while.

Anyway, we had no intention of doing the through trip, so we just had a mooch about in the workings.

A couple of things caught my eye and raised a glimmer of interest:-

Near the bottom of the shaft, just past the muddy section through to the main workings there's a fissure that appears to be backfilled with rocks and sand. There looks to be enough gap above the fill to crawl up the fissure. Does anyone know anyone who's been up it?

Next. Down the pipe past the short climb down with the fixed rope and through the first tight bit is a chamber with a shaft. There's animal bones and rubbish at the shaft bottom suggesting it's open at the top. Is the shaft top accessible?

Just before this shaft there's a natural water worn shaft on the left with a constriction about 30 feet up. Is anyone aware of any exploration of this?

Offline pwhole

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #1 on: October 23, 2018, 04:07:12 pm »
I think I know where you mean by the fissure filled with rocks and sand - but after leaving the shaft 'chamber' did you duck under the low arch at right into the natural chamber - before turning left toward the main route? If so, it's probably quarry collapse, but this is more of a huge pile through a hole than a fissure. If not, and it's in the pipe workings above the passage, then no, I don't.

I think the base of the shaft with the animal bones is Gentlewoman's or Queen Shaft, and according to the PDMHS Bulletin, Vol 8, No. 2 it's blocked at the surface. Upper Close Shaft further downslope is meant to be open, and the bottom 30 feet utilised a natural hading fissure, but it sounds like you haven't gone that far downslope - it's after the climbs up and down. I did climb into some natural around there a couple of years ago, but I didn't go very far as we were on a deadline - I did find a monster shothole nearby that was way larger diameter than usual.

It's all very interesting down there and the phreatic features near the shaft base that (some with sediment infill remaining) are extremely interesting, considering where they are. This cave chamber is the one I mentioned - the low arch from the main route is at centre left, so it's not far away.

To avoid any GDPR issues I can't say who it is in the photo until they give me consent! ;)

Offline markpot

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #2 on: October 23, 2018, 07:53:38 pm »
Mad,have you got a rough guestimation of how far down the hill this is?can you referr to any suface features?i think i know the features your looking at but I've not been down there for a while. looked at the pdmhs doc phil posted and the bar masters and think this could be near to something we are exploreing at the moment which has plenty of natural in.

Offline Madness

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2018, 08:02:52 am »
Phil - You're spot on about which fissure I'm refering to. I first thought that it headed towards the quarry face, but it's roughly at 90 degrees to the run of the main pipe. Looking at the survey on the PDMHS bulletin that would suggest it goes elsewhere.

Also looking at the PDMHS bulletin, the shaft cross-sections seem to suggest that the shaft with the litter and animal bones is Upper Close shaft. It has rope marks just above the floor suggesting that it was a bit deeper at some point.

Mark - The natural water worn shaft is about 10 metres or so before Upper Close shaft. Probably no more than 100 metres downslope from Gentlewomans shaft. About 2 feet above ground level at the bottom of the shaft there are some fist sized rocks 'glued' in place by calcite, suggesting that the ground at the base of the shaft has dropped a little.

The whole place gives me the impression that it has a lot more secrets to reveal. I don't know how much serious exploration has been done there. We clambered about in the stopes a bit the other night, but I'd want to put an few bolts it if I were going much higher as a slip could have you rattling your way down to the bottom of the stope. I don't think it would be an easy rescue for a stretcher case.

There was some talk last year (I think) on Aditnow suggesting a bit of a group meet at Gentlewomans. I'd definately still be up for that if people were interested.

Offline alastairgott

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2018, 08:20:36 am »
To avoid any GDPR issues I can't say who it is in the photo until they give me consent! ;)

Pick me, pick me!

Offline markpot

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2018, 07:44:53 pm »
Yep,we are further down slope than that mad.looks interesting though. Get furtling :thumbsup:

Offline AR

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2018, 09:01:23 pm »
I think this needs someone to scale the Flindall & Hayes survey over satellite imagery to link the surface features with the underground - I'm not volunteering, far too much on at the moment!

There is plenty still to do in that area, never assume that a well-visited system has been thoroughly explored...
Dirty old mines need love too....

Offline ganjaman

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #7 on: October 24, 2018, 09:03:36 pm »
hi im new here but not to being underground if you want a hand digging or anything let me know could do with finding some decent people with interest in lead mines and srt

Offline History Trog

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2018, 09:28:23 am »
Phil mentions having seen a "monster shothole" in these workings. Any details of this would be of great interest to Jim Rieuwerts (and myself) as possible evidence of early gunpowder work.

Adam mentions about using our survey to scale over surface features - I have no objections to that use.

Offline ganjaman

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2018, 09:43:26 am »
you dunno what a monster shot hole is? I maybe make one somewhere famous for ya all to dig through

Offline alastairgott

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2018, 09:46:17 am »
COOL!

Offline ganjaman

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #11 on: October 25, 2018, 09:50:04 am »
it aint big and it aint clever but sure im not only one on here that uses other means when they sick of shovels n picks

Offline alastairgott

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #12 on: October 25, 2018, 09:52:55 am »
You're right Ganja, we've all got many tools under the belt. Makes it much easier if you've got the right tool for the right job.

Offline ganjaman

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #13 on: October 25, 2018, 10:15:24 am »
I peeled a small amount of rock back around the door at crich for a test I think il be opening that up real soon tbh seems nobody has been in there yet

Offline markpot

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #14 on: October 25, 2018, 10:18:00 am »
No need to blow the doors off jon.Theres another entrance not far away thats open.

Offline ganjaman

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #15 on: October 25, 2018, 10:22:16 am »
I didn't know this all I could find out was it goes crazy deep and there is a capped shaft which is flooded I heard a rumour there is a way at the back of the quarry but as nobody seemed to have been in I thought it was bs

Offline mikem

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #16 on: October 25, 2018, 10:56:07 am »
It's a lot easier to find out about this sort of stuff & get access to places if you're part of a group....

Offline alastairgott

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #17 on: October 25, 2018, 11:17:41 am »
Mike, you're talking to a Ghost now. Given we're coming up to Halloween, Ganja wanted to sacrifice his login so he can be a free spirit.

Offline pwhole

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #18 on: October 25, 2018, 05:18:55 pm »
History Trog - I did mention the monster shothole to Jim after I saw it, but for once - no evidence! I'd left the camera packed up and way behind us when I found it, so resolved to get a photo next time - and I will.

I've had some joy overlaying the entire survey from the PDMHS Bulletin in Google Earth, but with only equal scaling and rotation I can't quite get it to fit - I'm using the river as a landmark, but it may not have been drawn that accurately in the first place. I may have to resort to manual (uneven) scaling and see if I can stretch to fit. Trouble is, there's so many trees up there it's almost impossible to spot any features.

Offline droid

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #19 on: October 25, 2018, 05:55:18 pm »
Have any LIDAR surveys been gone there, Phil?
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Offline markpot

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #20 on: October 25, 2018, 08:00:08 pm »
Mad,i had some time today to have a look at the survey and a walk around masson.we could be closer than i first thought.Definatly further down slope,but close to old jant.pm you over the weekend.

Offline AR

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #21 on: October 25, 2018, 09:10:08 pm »
Have any LIDAR surveys been gone there, Phil?

There has been a high-quality LIDAR survey been done of the entire Derwent Valley, unfortunately the bit I had sight of only went as far as the south edge of the quarry.
Dirty old mines need love too....

Offline Pete K

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #22 on: November 11, 2018, 05:14:54 pm »
Masson Quarry
Please use main thread for comment and further info - https://ukcaving.com/board/index.php?topic=24285

Please note that cavers should treat access to sites in and around Masson Quarry as highly 'sensitive' right now and are advised to stay away from the site in the short term until contact has been made with the landowner.
There has been a resumption of groundworks at the quarry and heavy machinery is present. DCA were investigating the risk to the underground sites in the vicinity but unfortunately, the report has come in today that Gentlewoman's Shaft has been blocked by a large boulder. This is almost certainly a deliberate act to block access to the shaft. Thanks to Jacob (NUCC) for the pic.

DCA are already in communication with Natural England (SSSI land) and Derbyshire County Council (planning). Thanks to those who have supplied information on this matter. We request that cavers stay away from the area while DCA attempts to contact the owner and establish the facts.

Pete Knight
DCA Projects & acting Access Officer

Offline ObviousSpectre

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Re: Gentlewomans Shaft and Pipe
« Reply #23 on: November 11, 2018, 07:40:13 pm »
That’s a bugger. Hope the DCA manage to sort it out as it would be a shame to lose access to Masson.
"Water is a third oxygen so we should be fine"