History of Lindal & Marton

A village community at the heart of Furness


Parish Council

Red Man's Way

Red Man's Way is a recreational path, running the length of Barrow's slag bank site, in the area formerly occupied by the Hindpool Iron and Steelworks. In the 1870s this was the biggest Bessemer steel production plant in the world and employed over five thousand men. The processes involved in the iron and steel industry often left the men covered in red dust.

Path to Cocken Tunnel via Red Man's Way


"Miners" sculpture in Barrow-in-Furness by West Cumbrian artist Colin Telfer. Other mining-related statues by Colin Telfer can be found in Maryport, Egremont, Millom and St Bees. However, before you rush to visit the sculpture, please see the footnote to this article.

"Miners" by Colin Telfer
Councillor Alf Horne, a member of Cumbria County Council’s local area committee for Barrow, who was instrumental in the development of Red Man’s Way, unveiled the "Miners" sculpture in June 2003. Councillor Horne said: 

“This is the first statue to celebrate the working people of Barrow and district. Many of them in the past risked their lives in the mines and workplaces to make the town what it is now - a good place to be. The route is very well used by local people and by placing the sculpture in this location we hope to recreate what the sculpture is all about - miners and steelworkers returning home from work, covered in red ore dust. We hope that the sculpture will draw attention to this recreational route and encourage visitors to explore further the industrial heritage of Barrow at the Dock Museum.  Barrow continues to see huge changes and redevelopment in the Bessemer Way area, this sculpture is on a human scale and it provides a place to pause for reflection.” 

The sculpture depicts two lifesize figures of mine workers returning home from work, each carrying a carbide lamp. Each figure weighs about 30 stone and has been cast using a resin and iron ore mix. They stand on a plinth of St Bees sandstone. 

The wealth of Barrow was based on the rich haematite mines of Furness - at Lindal, Swarthmoor, Askam, Park, Dalton, Newton, Stank and Roanhead. Because of the colour of the iron ore, the miners were known as the red men.

These photos were taken in June 2004.

Summer 2009. What a difference five years makes. The path and it's surroundings bear clear evidence of the area's popularity with dog walkers and drinkers of cheap beer, and a lot less evidence of regular maintenance. You'll find only the remains of the Miners sculpture, reduced to two stumps and part of a foot. A sad and disappointing sight.

Barrow Dock Museum

The Barrow-in-Furness Dock Museum is situated immediately beside the massive BAE Systems Submarines Devonshire Dock Hall (DDH) building, about 0.5 km from the "Miners" sculpture. The museum contains many iron mining and shipbuilding artefacts, and hosts local heritage talks and exhibitions. It has an extensive photographic and video archive, illustrating bygone shipyard facilities, production techniques, ship launches, etc.

Dock Museum (foreground) with BAE SYSTEMS Devonshire Dock Hall (background)

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