Mine shaft the size of a small car appears in garden of Redruth home

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Two houses in Redruth have been evacuated after part of a garden fell into disused mine workings.

The hole in the front garden of the property boundary line caused several homes to lose electricity when the collapse happened last weekend.

The owners have been advised to contact their insurers and mining engineers have been called in to advise what to do next.

Matthew Sharpe, Geologist for Cornwall Mining Consultants, was one of the first consultants on the site. He says mine shafts in Cornwall are 'a lot more common than people would think."

"For example, we had two calls just this week in two separate places in Cornwall and obviously try the work needed to determine what exactly they are in and what they're doing."

"There's a lot of recorded and also unrecorded mine workings, especially in the Redruth Camborne area."

The hole appeared 17 March and has grown in size in the week since. Credit: Cornwall Mining Consultants

Protective barriers have been installed around the property to stop people from getting too close to the minehole as specialists say that it could grow in size and reach the pavement.

Dan Berrimen, Managing Director of CMC says it is 'quite a complicated situation' for the owner.

"The records that we have for this show that this was probably an engine shaft. So it's at least three metres by two metres or about the size of a small car. It could be larger than that.

"And we're concerned that more material might continue to fall into this. And then the hole we see a surface get bigger from where it is right now and encroach further out in the garden."

A significant amount of protective barriers have been installed around the property as the hole could reach the pavement. Credit: ITV News

"The shaft is shown on the plans to reach a depth of about 120 metres, about 400 feet, which is deeper than any of the high cliffs around here on the north coast.

"So you get an idea, but at the moment it hasn't dropped that far, but obviously the material could drop down into it to that point."

"Well, the crucial thing we need to know next is exactly how big this shaft is and what the ground conditions are like around this.

"So we can start to show firstly how big an area it might affect, how bad it might get, and secondly what we can do to fix it, how are we going to go about fixing it? And that's what we're going to do next."