Unique 'hands on' experience of Blue John Stone
Access the mining areas not usually allowed by visitors
Mine a piece of Blue John Stone & craft it in our work shop
Work with skilled crafts people to make 3 unique pieces
Guided tour of Cavern to see Blue John Stone and stalactites
About this activity
What's included, what's not
Mine some Blue John Stone and craft 3 finished products with skilled craftsmen in our workshop
Use of equipment, tools and materials, overalls, hard hat, head torch, gloves.
Blue John Stone to work with.
Admission into the Cavern, Visitor Centre, museum, shop and work shop areas
Help and supervision from skilled crafts people
Lunch and drinks
Boots or suitable footwear for rough terrain. Please bring your own.
What you can expect
This all day 'hands on' Experience gives you a unique opportunity to go into the Blue John Stone mining areas of Treak Cliff Cavern, not normally accessed by the public. Here you can prospect with hand tools to mine your own piece, and then take it through all the crafting processes in our work shop to create your own polished geological specimen of the rare mineral found only here at Treak Cliff at Castleton. You'll also make a sterling silver ring or pendant, helped by our crafts people, plus a window hanger/Christmas decoration from Blue John Stone too.
On arrival at the Cavern Entrance check in with your host for the day, who will give you a short introductory tour and talk in the museum in our Visitor Centre. Next it's time to put on overalls, hard hat, head torch and gloves and go underground.
First you take the guided tour of the Cavern to see the largest deposits of Blue John Stone still in situ, and see the finest stalactites in the Peak District. See where we collect our own drinking water deep inside the hill (you may be drinking later in Tea and Coffee!)
Then it's time to get a bit muddy! Take the hand tools and bucket into the mining areas with your host, who will help you to prospect for and discover pieces of Blue John Stone for yourself. Take them back outside to the work shop, get cleaned up and see what you have found!
In the work shop you clean the clay and mud off your finds, and the crafts people will help you decide which piece to work with. Then you will take your piece through the shaping and abrasive processes, and eventually to the final polishing stage to make the surface shiny.
The crafts people help you select a prepared piece of jewellery-quality stone, and help you shape and fit it into your chosen setting, and finish it to a high standard. Your third item is a larger slice of stone to rub and polish, attach a loop and hanger to make a Christmas decoration or widow hanger.
Each of your items comes with an information card and packet, and the jewellery has a presentation box.
You can take a look around the Visitor Centre and Museum any time during the Experience.
Tea, Coffee, light Lunch, and Cream Tea are all included in your Experience.