Pen-y-gogarth (Great Orme) Roman Copper Mine

Copper Mine

Large-scale human activity on the Great Orme began around 4,000 years ago during the Bronze Age with the opening of several copper mines. This is thought to have continued during the Roman occupation of Britain.

The miners dwelt in caves within the copper-mine workings during the third and fourth centuries AD. The ‘bun-ingots’ produced here bore stamps which differed a great deal from the official military sigils, and probably represent the products of a civil contractor or local company, owned perhaps by a wealthy native landowner. The copper produced here and on nearby Anglesey, was very important to the economy of the British Isles, as, together with the tin mined in Cornwall they made Bronze, which allowed the technological advance from the Stone-Age. The availability of these native mineral resources allowed the British tribes of the late Neolothic period to remain independent of supplies from the continent, and encouraged a cultural diversification to develop between the British and Gallic Celts.

There is evidence of the Roman occupation of the Llandudno area in the third century AD, with a number of Roman coins having been discovered.

References for Pen-y-gogarth

  • Britain in the Roman Empire by Joan Liversidge (London 1968) p.203.

Roman Roads near Pen-y-gogarth

None identified

Sites near Pen-y-gogarth (Great Orme) Roman Copper Mine