Box Freestone Mine, Wiltshire
Box Mine in Wiltshire holds some incredible memories for me. Our first visit to Box Mine was in March 2010 and since then, we’ve been back more times than I can remember!
One of the largest Limestone Quarries in the area, Box was mined from Roman times and grown ever since. Mining stopped all together circa 1970.
Nowadays, the mine is a bat preservation area and only visited by cavers and explorers. The mine also holds a treasure in it’s crown. An area taken over by the MOD in the early 20th Century was used as a giant air intake for the underground top secret cold war complex next door….Burlington.
At the centre of Box is an area known simply as Cathedral. Nothing anyone tells you about it can ever actually prepare you for the sheer size. Trying to get its size in to perspective can really only be achieved by having a fellow member of your group standing underneath the surface opening.
The Northern section of Box Mine has several wooden cranes, some still in fantastic condition, others falling to pieces. The Southern section is the only part of Box we haven’t explored yet, I’m sure it wont be undone for long.
NOTE: Due to the latest group of idiots getting themselves lost and needing emergency rescue this blog post is getting a lot of attention. DO NOT enter this quarry if you’re not adequately prepared and have all the necessary equipment & surveys.
UPDATE: Official access rights to the mine have changed. According to Hanson, “There is no prospect of us entertaining access for anyone, I’m afraid. Nor should any experienced caver consider entering the mine… last year we ceased all underground inspections on safety grounds.”