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China Clay works, Cornwall EAC281617

China Clay works, Cornwall EAC281617


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Additional Information

Filename: afl03_aerofilms_ac281617.jpg

Size: 4123 x 4242 (25.8MB)

Date: 3rd August 1974

Source: Historic England

Credit: Historic England Archive Aerofilms C

Source: English Heritage Images

© Historic England

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China Clay works, Cornwall EAC281617

ST AUSTELL, Cornwall. Aerial photograph showing the China Clay works. Photographed in 1974. Aerofilms Collection (see Links)

Historic England is the public body that champions and protects England's historic places

Media ID 1624855

© Historic England

Industrial Landscape


EDITORS COMMENTS
In this aerial photograph, EAC281617, taken in 1974 by Aerofilms for Historic England, we are offered a breathtaking view of the China Clay works in St. Austell, Cornwall. The image showcases an intricate industrial landscape that has shaped the region's identity for over a century. The expansive, undulating terrain is a testament to the area's rich geology, with its distinctive red-brown hues and patchwork quilt of pits and pools. China clay, or kaolin, is a type of clay that is highly prized for its purity and fine particle size, making it an essential component in the production of porcelain and other ceramics. The aerial perspective reveals the complex network of infrastructure that supports the extraction and processing of this valuable resource. The image reveals a maze of interconnected pits, each filled with water, which are used to extract the clay. The pools are surrounded by earthen embankments, which serve to control the water levels and prevent erosion. The photograph also highlights the industrial processing facilities, including the drying beds where the clay is spread out to dry in the sun. The image also reveals the railways and roads that crisscross the landscape, connecting the works to the wider world. This aerial photograph is a fascinating glimpse into the past, offering a unique perspective on the China Clay industry in St. Austell, Cornwall. It not only showcases the industrial landscape but also highlights the symbiotic relationship between the natural environment and human ingenuity. The image is a reminder of the rich history and cultural significance of this unique industrial landscape.

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