Wednesday, 2 January 2019

CORNWALL'S CHINA CLAY

Cornwall China Clay Pit
When people think of Cornwall they often imagine sandy beaches, cliff walks, surfing, quaint fishing villages, Cornish pasties, cream teas and so on. And, yes, Cornwall has a myriad of these to offer but it also has industry - or perhaps I should say it did once have industry.

Take the production of china clay for example. It's now hard to believe that half of the world's supply came from Cornwall in the late 1800s. It was so profitable that it was often described as being white gold. Unfortunately the clay industry, along with tin and mineral mines, has somewhat declined - but there is still some china clay being produced. Of course you won't see the clay areas on the normal tourist trails.

In St.Austell, though, there is real evidence of Cornwall's china clay industry in the shape of a large pyramid of the clay spoils. It's quite a landmark - as the photo below shows.
China Clay Pyramid, St.Austell

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