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Home > Companies & Works > Shale Mines > Roman Camp No.3 mine

Roman Camp No.3 mine

Location 55.917403, -3.484653 , show in map
Shale-field Pumpherston shale-field
Dates opened and closed Opened pre-1906, abandoned 1938
Owner Broxburn Oil Company Ltd
Type of working Inclined adit
Seams worked Wee, Jubilee, Curly, Plain and Maybrick seams of the Pumpherston Shale
Oil works served Roman Camp Oil Works
Current status of site Site substantially re-modelled and now waste land


One of a sequence of steeply inclined mines following the outcrop of Pumpherston Shales along the western arm of the Pumpherston anticline, No. 3 Mine exploited Jubilee shale lying mainly to the north of the Edinburgh to Bathgate railway.

Each of the O.S. maps show a structure straddling the mineral railway; presumably containing a hopper into which standard gauge wagons tipped or discharged their shale. From this hopper, hutches of shale would have been drawn up a steep incline, passing beneath a second line of railway to reach the top of the retorts.

The 1917 shows the modest surface works of No. 3 Mine, whose produce appears to have fed the hopper structure (which seems to be labelled "No.1"), along with shale brought by tramway from Roman Camp No. 4 Mine.

The land has been re-graded and ground levels changed considerably since the closure of Roman Camp Oil Works; little survives of this complex of workings other than the railway bridge.


Ordnance Survey maps reproduced by kind permission of the Trustees of the National Library of Scotland.

Underground Workings

Archive Images


Recent Images


Roman Camp No.3, worked by Broxburn Oil Co., has been driven from the south side of the Edinburgh and Bathgate railway in the direction of Powflats where it passed through the east and west dolerite sills, about 100 feet broad. The shale on both sides of this igneous intrusion was burnt, and the operation of driving a mine though this dyke proved a laborious one. Oil Shales of the Lothians; British Geological Survey, 1906.

Arrangements are being made to cut off the Curly Brae Section where a crush, which we have not been able to check, has been giving a great deal of trouble (June 1925). From Scottish Oils Ltd, Managing Director's Monthly Report to the Board. (BP Archive No. 215662)

Accident Records


Additional Resources

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