Our WI was invited along to a talk organised by English Heritage at the Hayle Rugby Club on Dynamite/Cordite manufacturing – this was a very interesting and technical talk by Peter Channon – with a free pasty for everyone and all finished off with the Celtic Fiddlers.
This talk was followed up by a guided walk of the Dynamite works at Upton Towans, Hayle. The landscape has been transformed by safety banks made of sand, that were built separately around the various workshops. There is little evidence of any remaining structures. Other than the foundations for the acid works/electrics etc, everything was demolished. These sand barriers are now covered in grass and weeds and stand at 2 metres high. A train platform is still very much in evidence as a train ran down from the Towans to the harbour carrying the dynamite and cordite; supplies were also taken to the site by train. The safety record of the site was quite good considering they were dealing with such dangerous substances – only a handful of people were killed. There are numerous walks in this area with views across to Carbis Bay and St. Ives. It was a lovely sunny day which made for a very pleasant afternoon.