The Mines of Emmer Green

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The Emmer Green (Hanover) Chalk Mine is an extensive abandoned subterranean chalk mine at Emmer Green,located just north of the junction of Peppard Road & Kiln Lane. The mine is so named because the land is now owned by the Hanover Housing Association who have a development adjacent at Wordsworth Court.

It is believed the mine has been there since the early construction of the town, and played a part in the brick-making that has been carried out since the Middle Ages.

The chalk dug from the chamber, which is around 20 metres below the area and accessed by a long tunnel and ladder, was mixed with local clay and used to make bricks. These bricks were then used to make some of the town's most historic buildings.

The mine is one of a number of known mines in the Emmer Green and Reading area where chalk mining was often done in conjunction with brick making as chalk and clay are found together in the area and chalk was use in the making of bricks. It is likely other abandoned mines remain undiscovered. The area was once known as Rose Hill and contained brickfield and chalk mining works.

It was last used in 1947, but also played an important role for storing vital council documents during World War Two. It was discovered in 1977 during building works and currently access is through a 50ft fixed steel ladder in a narrow vertical shaft below a locked iron cover.

These amazing images were take by urban explorer Matt Emmett and you can see other examples of his work on his website

Further information on the mine and the mining industry around Reading can be found at

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  • Published: 2018-08-08 14:41:34
  • Updated: 2021-12-10 18:56:28

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