The silver mine on the marsh

Walking trail

Discover the ancient silver-lead mine of Wheal Pool, and the swamp like willow carr of Loe Marsh. Cross over the river Cover and return along the old Penrose estate carriage-drive.

The marsh at Loe Pool, Penrose


Silver mine on the marsh trail map


Helston fairground car park, Penrose amenity area


Start in the fairground car park beside the Penrose amenity area. This whole area was a marshy flood plain until, in 1912, Coronation Park and boating lake were opened on the far bank of the River Cober. From 1955, a cattle market was held where the community centre now stands.


At the far end of the car park, ignore the steps to the right, and instead turn left through the gap in the hedge and onto the road. Turn right, following the road to Lower Nansloe. Soon Loe Marsh appears a murky tangle of water-tolerant alder and willow. Above the road, to your left, is the site of Castle Wary, thought to be an Iron Age settlement. Before the First World War, a company was set up to rework the tin deposits of the Loe Valley, building a large processing plant near Castle Wary and a narrow-gauged railway which followed the course of the road you’ve walked along.


You’ll soon arrive at the stubby chimney and ivy-clad ruins of a pumping engine house and boiler house, built in the 1850s to work the lode of the ancient Castle Wary silver-lead mine (later known as Wheal Pool). The mine closed in the 1880s.

Wheal Pool mine at Penrose


Soon after leaving the mine, take the path on the right, and follow it down the steps to cross the footbridge over the River Cober. Ignore the riverside path on your right and continue straight ahead along the causeway path as it winds through the willow carr.

A heron rests in the woodlands at Penrose


When you eventually reach the surfaced drive, turn right. This track was laid in the 1840s as the new carriage drive to Penrose house. Follow the drive all the way to the entrance gate.

The drive between Penrose house and Helston


Just before the gate turn immediately right to enter the Penrose Amenity Area. Follow the path into the park and turn left over the footbridge to arrive back at the car park.


Helston fairground car park, Penrose amenity area

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The silver mine on the marsh


A mostly level or gently-sloping walk along traffic-free paved roads, with a flight of steps, a footbridge and a short stretch through the marshes which may be muddy after wet weather. Stout footwear is advisable. 

The silver mine on the marsh

How to get here

Helston fairground car park, Porthleven Road, Helston, Cornwall, TR13 0RA
By road

From Helston take the B3304 towards Porthleven. 

The silver mine on the marsh

Facilities and access

  • Car park
  • Cafe and toilets at Coronation Park boating lake