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Monument record MDR12019 - Quarry (site of), Wood Lane, Ible

Type and Period (1)

  • (Edwardian to Early 20th Century - 1906 AD to 1930 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

The site of a 19th/20th century disused quarry on Wood Lane, Ible that was worked for basalt until the early 20th century. (1) In common with almost all Derbyshire's former igneous rock quarries, the 'basalt' quarries of this area opened up in the period 1906-1911. These sometimes worked the Matlock Lower Lava, but mainly isolated dolerite. There were four identifiable basalt quarries, including this one near Ible. All were relatively short-lived, producing mainly during the Inter War years as the awareness of the properties of igneous rocks in providing good road wearing courses grew (the need being the result of faster traffic). By the 1940s however, large scale hard rock quarrying at Buxton and even more stringent quality controls, coupled with excessive waste problems, made these sites uneconomical. Ible Basalt Quarry, in the Via Gellia lies at the foot of a steep road to Ible on a part of the Gell (later Key) estate. It was opened up probably shortly before the First World War. By 1922 the workings were marked as 'old quarry' on the Ordnance Survey plan. Undated photographs show a large wooden plant typical of the 1920s/early 1930s at an upper level with a rail system leading down to hoppers over a chute to feed road vehicles. A steam driven lorry signed Ible Basalt Company suggests a date around 1930. Presumably one of the constituent Derbyshire Stone Companies had been in negotiation with the Key family as the subject of taking over the lease was on the agenda of the first meeting of Derbyshire Stone. It was soon reported that the quarry had a 40ft working face and that trials suggested 100ft of good quality stone. At least four companies expressed interest in developing the deposit, mainly on a joint basis. Further exploration was carried out in 1939, but Derbyshire Stone appeared to lose interest after acquiring Carlton Hill/ Taddington dolerite Quarry in 1942, following the death of Ben Bennett Jnr. Application to work Ible was made after the was and plans were drawn up in the early 1950s but apparently not progressed in the light of objections from the Peak Park Planning Board. The evidence on site also suggests excessive quantities of waste were encountered and that parts of the deposit weathered badly. (2) Although basalt was exploited at three or more quarries in the Via Gellia Valley (notably at Ible Quarry until c. 1930, latterly worked by Derbyshire Stone Ltd.), as far as is known, all the output was all destined for aggregates. The concrete loading remain. The only exceptions appear to be its use in occasional field walls and outbuildings around Bonsall, e.g. opposite the Pig of Lead guest house. The concrete loading chutes still extant at Ible Basalt Quarry, are typical of many previously to be seen in quarries but are the only ones remaining in the Southern Peak and should be retained. (3)

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Harris, H. 1971. Industrial Archaeology of the Peak District. p 77.
  • <2> Bibliographic reference: Tarmac Ltd. 2000. Tarmac Papers: The Archives and History Initiative of Tarmac Limited Volume IV. p 291-2.
  • <3> Unpublished document: Thomas, I (National Stone Centre). 2012. The Lower Derwent Valley: The Exploitation and Use of Historic Building Materials. p 30, 34 illus..



Grid reference Centred SK 2527 5678 (133m by 228m)

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Record last edited

Dec 21 2018 9:27AM

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