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Gourock Copper Mine

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A copper mine dating from c. 1780 was sunk in the area of Drumshantie, behind Tower Hill, Gourock, south of the Gourock Burn.

Reported as being worked by an English company when it was sunk, it was owned by the Gourock Copper Mining Company. A further deposit of copper ore was discovered towards the south end of Coves reservoir, but the quantity was insufficient to justify commercial working of the find.

Long disused, the only evidence which remains of the mine is the walled up entrance, and the burn which runs through Gourock Park, which would once have carried effluent from the works. A nearby housing scheme is named after the mine, as the Coppermine, or Old Coppermine, Scheme, and the mine would have been located in the area of Kirn Drive and Drumshantie Road.

The wall referred to above was not part of the copper mine but was the rear wall of the destructor building. This was situated in the area now comprising Kirn Drive and was demolished in the 1950's. I can still recall watching the chimney being brought down by explosives. As boys, we used to play in what we called the copper mine but was just a shallow cave to the south of the walled area. Between the wall and cave there ran a roughly paved road which I believe was possibly an army road to the old shooting ranges on the nearby moor.

A local report tells of the remains of wall in the area of Kirn Drive, part of the rear wall and remains of a 'destructor building' demolished during the 1950s, when the related chimney was brought down using explosives. To the south of the walled area was a cave which the children played in and referred to as the copper mine, but was in reality nothing more than a shallow cave. Beyond this was a road, possibly and army road, which lead to the former Drumshantie Rifle Range. The road also provided access to the old copper mine pond, which was used by the Gourock Model Yacht Club.

The cave, road, and dried up pond were lost when the area was developed for recreational use, and the rifle range followed with the development of the Midton housing estate.

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