This point of the river has probably been used as a trading point from ancient times. It has been speculated that the camp at Roundwood was a trading post at some point in antiquity and in such case the quay would have played an important role. Its heyday was probably during the early eighteenth century when it was a major shipping point for the profitable mines of the area, notably Chacewater and North Down Mines. The Sherborne Mercury of 19.11.1798 records that ... very extensive buildings, wharfs and quays ... used for carrying on the business of smelting and refining copper ... were sited at Roundwood. The two main buildings were 60 metres x 10 metres and 30 metres x 10 metres. The depth of water was sufficient for vessels of 300 tons to come alongside and unload. The quay declined in importance by the 1820s, probably due to the opening of the Devoran railway. An advertisement in the West Briton of 1832, when the quay was again for sale, noted the ..wharf, and a lime kiln, excellent dwelling house and appurtenances.0 Apparently the two large buildings used for refining copper had been demolished. Traces of a saw pit dating from about 1876 are still visible; this feature relates to Roundwoods history of wooden ship building.