Matlock Bath Peak District Mining Museum

Peak District Mining Museum is located in the Pavilion, in Matlock Bath itself and is an exhibition showing the history of lead mining throughout the Peak District.

Visitors to the museum can experience and wonder at the forgotten world of the Derbyshire lead miner and it’s possible to see the tools that were used, the clothes the miners wore and the advances in technology and the importance of this metal in our modern day lives. The centuries, men have toiled underground in hazardous and cramped conditions to earn a very meagre wage by extracting the mineral galena, or more commonly known as lead ore, and the exhibition really brings to life how hard the miners worked in such dangerous conditions.

Children and adults, can crawl and climb through a maze of twisted tunnels and shafts to feel the cramped conditions the Derbyshire lead miners lived in and read about the strange and ancient laws which controlled the miners lives and marvel at a history which dates back over 2000 years to Roman times.

At the museum there are climbing shafts for the young at heart, and a Hazard tunnel for those who dare, and a rag and chain pump, working models and a slideshow, as well, as rocks and minerals which include the famous Howie collection. There are also, of course, informative displays always on show .

The Temple mine was acquired by the ancient custom of ‘nicking’, a practice where a shallow notch or cut was edged on the surface, and the mine has been worked since 1922 for fluorite and lead ore and shows a variety of mining methods which have been used over the years. It’s possible to discover the networks of tunnels which exist under your feet and wonder at the crystals glistening in the walls. The mine really gives an authentic insight into life underground and the tools and equipment, which were involved in the extraction of the minerals.

The Peak District mining Museum in Matlock Bath also houses a very large gift shop with an extensive collection of books, gifts and souvenirs. There is an extensive selection of industrial and mining archaeology books which can also be ordered by mail and light refreshments are available in a very comfortable seating area.

The museum is accessible to the disabled, but unfortunately, the mine isn’t suitable for visitors with some physical disabilities. There is a coach and car park adjacent to the museum so it’s not far to walk if it’s a rainy day, and there are toilets with facilities for the disabled located in the car park itself.

The Temple mine is possible to visit daily at 12 noon and 2 PM in the summer, and at 12 noon and 2 PM in the winter at weekends only. The mining Museum is available to visit 10 till 5 PM during the summer and 11 till 3 PM in the winter. It is closed Monday and Tuesday of each week from November to March, and is also closed at Christmas Day.

It’s possible to buy a concession ticket to include both the museum or the mine, or the museum and the mine and children have a reduced price. There is also a family ticket available and the mine welcomes party visits by special arrangement which can include a guided tour and walk. There is also a comprehensive information pack, which can be requested from the museum and the preliminary visit by a group leader is free of charge.