Although small-scale mining had been carried out in Lloyds Coppice for centuries, the intensive industrialised working of clay, coal and ironstone didn’t begin until the mid-18C, from which point the woodland began to be cleared. Continual seepage of water from the wet clay hillside meant that mines would be unworkable were it not for the installation of pumps, worked by steam-engines, known in those days as fire engines.
The site and remains of the Lloyds Coppice Engine House, dating from 1745, are to be found in the south east corner of the woodland. The engine was a notable industrial monument, not least because of its long working life. With constant repairs and modifications, it was kept working until 1913 when the mines closed. Today, only the outline of the former engine remains. Ground movement has also affected the site, the circular pump shaft has now become oval.
To find out more, follow the link to Lloyds Coppice leaflet.