Ballycorus Lead Mine is located in Ballychorus in south county Dublin. This tower was built in 1807 after a vein of lead was found within the hill. It is the only example left in Ireland and is regarded as one of the finest examples built in the UK or Ireland. In the 1770’s a process had been discovered whereby additional quantities of lead could be extracted from a furnace if the vapors could be trapped long enough to precipitate the lead, and so, a 2km flue was constructed here to trap these particles. The Mining Company of Ireland (MCI) took over the site in 1826 and began underground mining which lasted up until 1863 when the lead and a small quantity of silver was exhausted. The site continued to process ore extracted from Wicklow, Wexford, Donegal and even as far away as the Isle of Man until it’s closure in 1913. The lead was mainly used for roofing and piping within Dublin’s expanding suburban housing. The tower was originally one third taller and was designed to carry off the poisonous lead fumes into the atmosphere. There were however many reports of sickness by the locals and high mortality levels and the area was nicknamed ‘Death Valley’! There are still many industrial buildings which survive which were involved in the smelting and rolling process. These include furnaces, purification tanks, lime kilns, stores, workers cottages and the manager’s house. The name Ballycorus means ‘townland of the Pearse family’ in Irish. There are some great views and pleasant forest walks nearby.