In 2002 Gwennap Parish Council purchased the Wheal Maid site for £1 from the previous owners Carnon Enterprises. The valley was once a tailings dam for Wheal Jane and has important 19th Century mining remains. As such the area is part of the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape World Heritage Site.
Wheal Maid is now popular with walkers, mountain bikers and horse riders. The site has hosted rounds from regional and national mountain bike competitions. The videos below show some hightlights from some of these events.
Environment Agency Investigation
In respect to concerns about possible contamination of the land at Wheal Maid the Environment Agency has carried out an investigation looking specifically at the lagoons within the site.
The investigation showed that there is a risk, because of arsenic present in the tailings, to children aged 6-12 who use the site as a mountain bike track. There is no evidence of any risk to those using nearby public rights nor to nearby residents.
Further details of this investigation along with a summary report can be found on Carrick District Council's website here.
Access to Wheal Maid
The Wheal Maid site is privately owned by Gwennap Parish Council and as such there is no right of access to the majority of the site. Part of the Cornish Way passes through the valley and this is open to walkers, cyclists and horse riders. Motorbikes are not permitted on this land.
Any motorbikers seen within Wheal Maid will be reported to the police.