Publication record details

Title Assessing the potential for reopening a building stone quarry : Newbigging Sandstone Quarry, Fife
Ref no OR/09/008
Author Hyslop, Ewan K.; Albornoz-Parra, Luis J.; Tracey, Emily A.
Year of publication 2009
Abstract Newbigging Sandstone Quarry in Fife is one of a number of former quarries in the Burntisland- Aberdour district which exploited the pale-coloured Grange Sandstone from Lower Carboniferous rocks. The quarry supplied building stone from the late 19th century, working intermittently from 1914 until closure in 1937, and again when reopened in the 1970s to the 1990s. The stone was primarily used locally and to supply the nearby markets in the Scottish Central Belt. Historical evidence indicates that prior to sandstone extraction, the area was dominated by largescale quarrying and mining of limestone, and substantial sandstone quarrying is likely to have begun after the arrival of the main railway line in 1890. It is probable that removal of the sandstone was directly associated with limestone exploitation, and that the quarried sandstone was effectively a by-product of limestone production. Sandstone extraction was probably viable due to the existing limestone quarry infrastructure (workforce, equipment, transportation) and the high demand for building stone in Central Scotland in the late 19th century. The geology within Newbigging Sandstone Quarry is dominated by thick-bedded uniform sandstone with a wide joint spacing, well-suited for obtaining large blocks. However, a mudstone (shale) band is likely to be present within a few metres of the principal (north) face of the quarry, around which the sandstone bed thickness and quality is likely to decrease. The mudstone bed forms a plane sloping at a shallow angle to the north, so that expansion of the quarry in this direction is likely to encounter a considerable volume of poor quality stone. Additionally, an east-west trending fault is present approximately 100 metres north of the quarry face, which is also likely to be associated with poor quality (fractured) stone.
Publisher British Geological Survey
Place of publication Nottingham, UK
Series Open Reports
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