The Great Opencast, Parys Mountain
Amlwch Copper Mines
It was in 1768 that copper was discovered on Parys Mountain above the sleepy village and port of Amlwch. There were two mines that opened: the Mona Mine and the Parys Mine.
The Mona Mine was owned by the Marquess of Anglesey and its profits took a downturn around 1808. Three years later, in 1811, Lord Anglesey looked around for someone to bring the mine back into profit. The man recruited to save Mona Mine was James Treweek, a Cornishman with great experience in mining. He began recruiting men who also had mineral mining experience. They came from Cornwall and Derbyshire. Treweek was a Methodist and a local preacher and worked hard out of working hours to make a spiritual difference to the lives of his workers. In 1832, after a period of sharing the Welsh Methodist Church in Amlwch, James Treweek raised the finance to build the present English Methodist Church. The building was completed that year and five years later it was extended. It was a place of worship frequented not just by miners and their families but sea captains, engineers, ship builders and others linked to maritime activities.
Treweek became known locally as the "diligent Christian gentleman." A number of young men from the church showed interest in training for ministry and he gave them the run of his considerable library at his house, Mona Lodge. Although he was a Methodist he was buried in the churchyard of St Eleth's Anglican Church where his headstone can be seen today.
Treweek's first church was the Welsh speaking Wesleyan Church. So that he could continue as a local preacher he learned to speak Welsh. Whilst he was associated with this church he negotiated a separate service in English for his English workers until the present building was opened. Many years later, in 1975, the Welsh Methodists decided to leave their building and they were welcomed by the English church and have worshipped here in a separate service in our building to this day.