Wheal Dream! Two words that conjure up both the harshness and ethereal nature of St Ives and Cornwall.
I can just imagine sitting in front of my computer, drinking a cup of tea, and daydreaming of my next trip to St Ives!
Our lovely white ceramic mug shows the original "Wheal Dream" street sign, with all its little imperfections! As like most things in St Ives, things tend to get a little worn and weathered. We like to call it character!
Wheal Dream is the little road tucked away above Bamaluz Beach. If you walk all the way along the quay, turn left past the Pier Coffee Shop and walk up toward the St Ives Museum, you will find Wheal Dream.
Why Is It Called Wheal Dream?
The reason for it's name is quite simple - it is named after the Wheal Dream mine, which is now where the St Ives Museum stands. You can still see bits of the old mine walls around Bamaluz Beach.
Wheal (whel or huel) means "mine" in the Cornish language. This was either a tin or a copper mine (i believe Wheal Dream was a copper mine) and they were all over St Ives. They are dotted all over St Ives in the most unlikely of places. If a road is called "Wheal" you can pretty much guarantee there used to be a mine there.
The Dream part I am struggling to find facts about on it's own. However, lots of mines are called Wheal Dream. Possibly because they are seen as a "golden venture" or amazing opportunity.
Sadly, the St Ives Wheal Dream was pretty unsuccessful and so the main building was soon turned into a store to cure and pack pilchards. This was in the mid 1800s. The building was then used as a religious meeting house, laundry and later a cinema. The upstairs however was used by the British Sailors Society Mission to house shipwrecked sailors who were waiting to be repatriated. This just show how treacherous being a sailor in the 1800s must have been!
Interesting Fact (if you like Troika pottery like I do!)
The Troika pottery was based at Wheal Dream from 1962 to 1970, (it then moved to Newlyn).
Our Wheal Dream St Ives Street Sign mug comes in a lovely presentation gift box - it would make a wonderful present - or a lovely treat for yourself!