Aldeia de S. Francisco
Today the parish of S. Francisco village is truly the centre of the extractive activity of the Panasqueira mines; a few hundred metres from the parish seat, Barroca Grande is the main entrance to the heart of the mine, where in 3 daily shifts, some dozens of men extract tons of rock from the bowels of the earth, which rise and circulate on the surface, subjected to different treatments until obtaining wolfram, copper and tin.
The mine is a complex organism, in constant change and movement, on the conveyor belts, in the sounds of the machines, from the permanent dripping of water, in the commuting of the workers at the surface…. Above the mine and the landscape stands a monumental heap of waste materials, which frames the very seat of the parish and, like a mountain, it is visible for many kilometres away.
The Zêzere limits the entire southern area of the parish, and if at certain points it borders industrial landscapes, on others it runs in rapids, due to its passage through narrow valleys, with slopes covered with Mediterranean scrubland.