© 2017 by Sussex Mineral & Lapidary Society

  • Facebook Social Icon
  • Twitter Social Icon
  • Google+ Social Icon



The Sussex Mineral and Lapidary Society comprises about 120 members, the majority of whom live in or close to Sussex and associate members in other parts of the UK and overseas.

We are united in a passion for minerals, fossils and lapidary work, with the principle focus being on minerals.


The Society holds monthly meetings in the Methodist Church in Perrymount Road in Haywards Heath, runs field trips in the UK and abroad and puts on a significant show each year in November in the Clair Hall in Haywards Heath.


We are a friendly group of people who aim to educate ourselves through sharing of knowledge of members and through input from club activities. We also aim to have a lot of good fellowship together and enjoy a range of social activities.


If you would like to find out more, come and give us a try and attend a couple of our meetings on a no obligation basis.

It would be great to see you.

The other pages on this website give details of where and when we meet and of the timetable for the rest of the year.

Also do come to the show in November; it is a fabulous event and showcases the best in mineral collecting in the UK.




Please note that as this is a new website, and the member's details from the old site could not be transferred, it is necessary to register again using your email address and creating a password.

To register, click on the Members Only tab, and a registration/log in form appears.

Current issues of the journal can be read, and there is also a Membership List; please check that your details are correct, and if changes are necessary (or if details are missing), please advise the webmaster (see the Contact Us page).


It is necessary to join the society before access can be given to the 'MEMBERS PAGE'.

Information of how to join is given on the 'MEMBERSHIP' page.


The following articles have been added as sub-pages to Lapidary:

'Making a Cabochon' by John White

'Stone Carving' by Peter Martin


The final edition of the 2020 programme has been added

DIARY DATES: (see 'ABOUT US' for location and times of meetings)

Friday 6th. March:       General Meeting


Talk by David Roe:  The Dragon and the Wolf; a Tale of Two Mines                                 Sponsor: Nick Hawes  


David Roe describes the history of a long forgotten Welsh gold mine and contrasts it with the recent failure of the Drakelands Mine at Hemerdon Bal. This will be interleaved with extracts from an 1854 satire on share speculation “Mining and Miners and Diggers and Priggers” – little has changed – particularly in the City of London.

The Red Dragon Mine was a lead mine with little prospect in 1852. It then dressed up its non-existent fortunes by reference to the distant sound of the California Gold Rush, and with the usual common cast of financial rascals, naïve share-holders and incompetent managers it turned into a “sure fire investment opportunity”.

At times almost slapstick comedy, its story also had the inevitability of a Greek tragedy, as it stumbled towards bankruptcy four years later. The mine’s location was lost to mining historians only to be rediscovered by archive research in 1986.


The epic scale of its pretensions was then revealed during its excavation by members of the Welsh Mines Society in the following decade in which David was involved. This work proved that the reports in the Mining Journal of the installation and operation of a Perkes gold amalgamating machine had been one of the few realities amid the promotional hot air.

And then we compare it with the rise and fall of Drakelands Mine – touted by Wolf Minerals as the dawn of a new era in metal mining in Devon – yet after three years of operation and around £100,000,000 of investors’ money the result was the same.

Where did it all go so wrong?


    Mineral of the Month: Wolframite