Wardlow Sough was driven to drain the mines of Wardlow Rake/Seedlow Rake/White Rake (naming depending on how very old you are), the primary lead vein running through the village of Wardlow. After our excursions in the sough being stopped by high water levels we did some research and decided to have a gander about on top.

Two entrances of interest were descended. The first dropped through a fine 1.3m diameter shaft to 25m depth, ginged most of the way. The floor is seemingly backfill here and gurgling water could be heard below. A short rift ascended but to a solid choke straight away.

The second shaft was wider in diameter and very impressive to abseil. This also ended at 25m depth but this time at a clear pool of water, with the ginging continuing down into the deep blue. Sediment on the walls suggest this level fluctuates by +7m, so would be worth returning in a dry summer to see if it lowers. At this point the upstream end of wardlow sough is 25m lower, so there’s presumably a blockage restricting flow out, not good for prospects in the sough…


Looking up the first shaft


Looking deep into the blue pool at the bottom of the second shaft

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