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Report - Cowdale Quarry and Lime works - Buxton - Apr 15

Discussion in 'Mines and Quarries' started by ledgehammer, Apr 28, 2015.

  1. ledgehammer

    ledgehammer 28DL Regular User
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    With the weather brightening up, the exploring takes a more outdoorsy approach - before a hike we visited this place...

    History>

    Driving along the A6, before you reach Buxton the monolithic buildings of the former Cowdale lime works rise up on the hill to the left. Lime quarrying has been common in this part of Derbyshire ever since the 1800s. In 1891 fierce competition saw 13 quarry owners consolidate their 17 quarries into the Buxton Lime Firms. They were controlled by four directors who tried to create a monopoly by raising the price of lime. Around the turn of the 20th century they were produced 280,000 tons of lime per year and dominated the industry in Derbyshire. The Cowdale quarry was initially established in 1898 by the New Buxton Lime Co and listed as 'Staden Quarry'. The large stone-built kilns standing 50 foot high included a network of railway sidings above the A6. The four shaft kilns were taken over by the Buxton Lime Firms in 1908 and, shortly afterwards in 1909, three concrete buildings (the gate-house, power house and ancillary building) were built close to the A6 in a highly unusual 'neo-Egyptian' style.

    The firm supplied high quality lime to Brunner Mond who finally bought BLF in 1918. In the mid-1920s concrete buttresses were added to the kilns shortly before the works were merged in 1927 to form I.C.I. Ltd. Quarrying ceased in 1948 but the works remained in operation until 1955 in order to store stone. In the latter part of the 20th century the tramlines were removed and some of the mine's buildings were demolished. The remaining works were left to slowly decay.

    In 1997 English Heritage assessed the quarry as part of its 'Monument Protection Plan', concluding that the site contained 'very impressive remains'. In 2010 a development proposal by Buxton Water to use the site as a water bottling plant and for storage was tabled. It also included plans for the development of a heritage visitor's centre and heritage trail. This required the need for the establishment of improved road access and the subsequent demolition of the power house. The planning application was refused in June 2011 and again on appeal in September 2012. However the power house was demolished in controversial circumstances in May 2011 just prior to the first planning application on the grounds that the structure was considered 'dangerous' by High Peak Borough Council.

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  2. ledgehammer

    ledgehammer 28DL Regular User
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  3. Miss Mayhem

    Miss Mayhem 28DL Regular User
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    Cool stuff, looks interesting :thumb
     
    ledgehammer likes this.
  4. KM_Punk

    KM_Punk Muppet
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    Interesting stuff :thumb really enjoyed the history
     
    ledgehammer likes this.
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