SCRCA Structure 249295: Force Gill Shale Quarry

SCRCA Location Introduction

During the construction of the Settle-Carlisle Railway, shale was extracted from the exposed rock faces on either side of - and below - the lower waterfall at Force Gill, significantly widening the otherwise narrow, naturally 'V'-shaped valley at this point.

As there was (is) no naturally occurring sand or gravel in this area, the shale was ground-up then either mixed with clay to make bricks or mixed with ground-up gritstone and burnt lime to make mortar / concrete. These essential building materials were then used to construct the bridges (including Ribblehead Viaduct) and other key structures along the Ribblehead - Blea Moor  section of the line.


Key details from the Location Record

Location Type
Archaeological Site
Location Variant
Archaeologal Site - Quarry or Pit
Assessment status
Current Use(s)
Shown on a land plan?
Construction / installation period
2: MR construction phase (1869 to 31st Dec 1876)
Distance from London St.Pancras
249 miles (chains not estimated)
Position relative to running lines
This location IS visible from nearby publicly accessible land.
Accessibility (ease of access)
Protection Category
The structure or site is not currently protected
Geographic Location
  View this location on mapping. or on aerial imagery.

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Errors and omissions
Reasonable efforts are being made to ensure the accuracy of the information obtained and uploaded as part of the SCRCA Project. However, it is possible that a few errors will have crept-in. If you notice any such errors, we would be grateful if you would bring them to our attention using the SCRCA Project Contact Form. The Friends of the Settle-Carlisle Line and the members of the SCRCA Project Team do NOT guarantee the accuracy of the information contained in this database. If you intend to use and / or act upon any of this information, you are advised to verify its accuracy BEFORE doing so.