Archive for August, 2009

Goodbye Geevor…hello London!

Posted in meet the geevor staff on August 19, 2009 by geevor

claire rToday’s my last day at Geevor! My time here as flown by! It only seems like yesterday I arrived smartly dressed, bright eyed and bushy tailed and excited about the project ahead. The smart clothes went out the window straight away! (there is no place for shirts and heels at a mine on a cliff edge).

I have certainly left my mark at Geevor, mostly dents in doorways where I have banged my head so many times, earning my title as possibly the clumsiest person in the world. I’ve also brought my special brand of endless enthusiasm and my extreme tea and cake eating abilities to Geevor.  Especially with the girls in the learning team, hopefully Claire S will carry on this tradition with style.

I’ve loved working here, it hasn’t been easy and yes I have ranted and raved, but I have thoroughly enjoyed the challenge and can not thank the University of Exeter, Geevor and KTP for giving me this opportunity.  I have made some good friends and even more great colleagues, I have so many thank yous I’m not even going to begin, but I thought I’d leave you with some of my best bits….

  • The Blog! I love it! it shows a side to Geevor that you don’t get to see when you visit! A behind the scenes look at the goings on at Geevor. It also gives you an insight into the sense of humour of the staff, Bill’s posts make me laugh so much.
  • Flickr and Twitter– brilliant tools that are encouraging Geevor to interact with the outside world, and for you guys to interact with us! Some of the photos on the Geevor Flickr group are truly inspirational.
  • Banging my head on one of the new cases in the Hard Rock Museum a week before the grand opening and getting concussion. Nick T being more concerned that I’d got blood on the case, before tending to the egg shaped lump on my head and taking me to hospital.
  • Bringing an ethos of ‘tea?’ to the learning team. What on earth did you do without me and tea?
  • My endless enthusiasm, no matter what gets thrown my way.  I am excited by everything and love the potential that Geevor has. I hope this pro active and opportunistic mentality sticks with Geevor as they go from Strength to Strength.
  • And finally, the website! It was hard going and I’ve done my best with the resources and time available! Its not bad for someone with no web experience what so ever! Dress the miner seems to be going down well, and my favourite is the whoosy image thing (lightbox that does cool things to see the image better) when you click on an image thumbnail.  As I said in a previous post, there are so many things I would like to develop and improve on, but I now leave it in Geevor’s capable hands and look forward to watching it grow.   I hope you like it.

And where am I going? What am I doing next?

Moving back to London that’s what!? After two years in idyllic Penzance, I’m moving back to the big city,  back to UCL! Im gong to be working on a project call Linksphere looking at virtual learning environments and social media.  I get to geek out basically, looking at how/if academics are using blogs, twitter, wikis and facebook.  Yes I am a nerdosaurs.  I’m very excited about it.  but it doesn’t mean I will forget about Geevor. .. I’ll be keeping my eye on you….

if you are interested in my exploits you can find out more on my new blog, from one blog to another.

Claire signing off.

New e-learning website for Geevor

Posted in 1 on August 17, 2009 by geevor
Harry (aged 9) and his Mum and Dad get to grips with the new website assisted by Geevor’s Learning Team Manager Rebecca

Harry (aged 9) and his Mum and Dad get to grips with the new website assisted by Geevor’s Learning Team Manager Rebecca

Learning at Geevor has an added dimension as the mine, based in Pendeen, launch their new interactive website. The address remains

Jam packed with information, the website has been built through a Knowledge Transfer Partnership between the University of Exeter and Pendeen Community Heritage. Detailing many aspects of mining, the website boasts interactive games, information sheets, images and sound bites plus a whole lot more! Interactives include Dress the Miner, Guess the Mystery Object and a Time Challenge. A page dedicated to oral history enables the user to listen to stories such as ‘Children down the Mine’. Many images and downloadable fact sheets are easily accessible and highlight many different aspects of the mine from people who worked at Geevor to the jobs they undertook.

The website has been developed over a period of two years. The KTP Associate is Claire Ross who has project managed the revamp. She said, “

Now visitors can discover Geevor in their own home! The new website is the place to discover about Geevor’s part in Cornish Mining. Whether planning a visit to the Museum, discovering more about its history, playing games, or exploring the images bank, it has never been easier to find out about Geevor. It adds an extra element to the already brilliant experience that you can have on site at Geevor. I hope you enjoy it” .

The website also features a Resource Bank that enables teachers to download information for use in the classroom. Learning Team Manager at Geevor Rebecca Gardner, said:

“Geevor’s history is now accessible to a broader audience. The layered format of the website allows accessibility to a range of learning needs, from early years to lifelong learners.”

Go and have a explore at

Old machines and new technology….

Posted in meet the geevor staff on August 13, 2009 by geevor

Claire SWell Blog me up! Apart from ducking the rain drops summer up until now not a lot has been on just quite a few people in site!  Today I was taken down to the Slimes Plant, which much to my disappointment wasn’t  slimy! There was however some VERY COOL STUFF.  The building was used to recover the tin from the ‘slimes’  which was the very fine particles from the shaking tables, this was the last chance for any particles of tin to be removed . The building was almost like another Mill pretty much un-touched. Lots of switches and buttons long since pressed, cobwebs and slowly rusting up machinery.  We discovered a computer from the late 60’s that was the size of a stand up drinks fridge that was to be used for on-stream analysing to continuously monitor the tin output from the Mill and the Slimes Plant. It was the first automatic control to be used at Geevor, using tape with holes in (see invention of Jacquard Loom in 1801, worked on same principle). Even more excitingly and thanks to the progression of technology I was able to film our visit with our new hand held flip camcorder!  Very high tech, and I was able to film myself walking into a low beam as I wasn’t looking where I was going! .

Sadly the other Claire will be leaving next week so we are making the most of picking her brains and learning how to do web site stuff and today edit film and upload on YouTube! Look out for the new spangly and informative web site launching on Monday 17th August.  Also check out the cool Biodiversity Events we are holding over August, it’s not just a mine you know……..

Back to the 60's.....
Back to the 60’s…..
Where does the coke come out ?
Where does the coke come out ?

Only the spiders down here now....

Midsummer Madness at Geevor

Posted in Geevor, meet the geevor staff on August 11, 2009 by geevor


It’s been a busy summer and it’s not over yet. We have had the ‘best ever’ July in visitor numbers – it even seemed at times that Eric Murley’s Jersey heifers were fighting to get out of the field opposite Reception and join the queue of visitors.  August also started with a bang when on the 3rd and 4th we had probably the two busiest days in our history.

And we know why it happened! It’s because Geevor is ‘the best museum we’ve visited’ [as one visitor wrote on the survey form we use]. We know that ‘Hard Rock’ is a major new attraction and that visitors love the special atmosphere of the Dry. The main lure is still the underground: to cope with the rising numbers, we went over to a system which allowed visitors to go through on their own, with guides stationed at intervals to talk to them and ensure safety. This seems to be popular.

But maybe, just maybe, the weather had something to do with it. When it is wet in the holiday season, people look for alternatives to the cliffs, coves and beaches. We think that on average each holiday visitor to Cornwall will visit one ‘Heritage Site’ – so we have worked hard to make sure that there is more on offer here than anywhere else. So, we’ve done activities like having a go at hand drilling, demonstrations of bronze casting and smelting tin, guided walks, talks in the Gallery – things which add to the value of the ticket price.

So, if August is not ‘wall to wall sunshine’, and if the dreaded Swine Flu does not decimate our staff, we will have had a very successful summer.  After August Bank Holiday, most of us will be looking forward to a bit less frenzy and a chance to catch up on all the jobs we’ve neglected over the last few months.  But we have a target of 6000 visitors for September and maybe if we just did a few extra events . . .

So long and thanks for all the tea…

Posted in meet the geevor staff on August 3, 2009 by geevor

The end of school term marks a change for Geevor’s Learning Team, as we say goodbye to schools until September & turn our thoughts to developing (or repairing!) our resources ready for the next school year in this valuable prep time over the school hols. But we ended the school term with a lovely local nursery group coming onsite after an outreach session on Basil & Scraggs Go Underground at Geevor including the famous Mining Song! (Don’t you just love songs with actions!?!)

We also had to say good bye to Jo B until next year, as she goes on maternity leave – (we said goodbye with a very chocolatey chocolate cake! – thanks Claire!). By the next monthly blog, we’d have also said good bye to Claire R, who’s been developing this blog, and other online stuff, over the last year and a half but is heading off to London to meet the Queen! (well, kind of..).

One thing that won’t change in the dept though, thanks to both Jo B and Claire R founding it over the last year or so – is drinking lots of tea!! Though Claire S may potentially be worse than both! we shall see…