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HER Number:MDV16246
Name:Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton


Quarry was worked in the 18th and into the 19th century. Limestone extracted for road-building as well as construction. A number of workers employed and seven cottages, bakery and blacksmith's workshop made up 'Kiln Village' to the south of the workings. Old lime kilns noted on site. Limestone extraction ended in 1906-9, and one of the two main pits was filled with water. Further commercial activity at the site took place in the later 20th century, finally ending in 1991.


Grid Reference:SX 730 911
Map Sheet:SX79SW
Admin AreaDartmoor National Park
Civil ParishDrewsteignton
DistrictWest Devon
Ecclesiastical ParishDREWSTEIGNTON

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses

  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX79SW/44
  • Old DCC SMR Ref: SX79SW/63

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • QUARRY (Early Medieval to Post Medieval - 1066 AD to 1750 AD (Between))
  • LIMESTONE QUARRY (XVIII to XX - 1751 AD to 1909 AD (Between))

Full description

Ordnance Survey, 1803-1804, Ordnance Survey Drawing 26 east (Cartographic). SDV227358.

Quarry shown on Ordnance Survey drawing of 1803-1804.

Vancouver, C., 1808, General View of the Agriculture of the County of Devon, 60-1 (Monograph). SDV294343.

The limestone has been worked for many years (written in 1808). Burnt for agricultural use.

South West Heritage Trust, 1838-1848, Digitised Tithe Maps and Transcribed Apportionments (Cartographic). SDV359954.

Black Aller is shown on the Tithe Map with main quarry called Kiln Quarry at SX73129112, and what appear to be tramways linking this with the spoil heaps to the east. Two kilns are shown (see related records MDV22308 and MDV22309), and a number of related dwellings (see MDV22310).

Omerod, G. W., 1867, Carboniferous Beds on the Northern Edge of Dartmoor, 124 (Article in Serial). SDV227353.

Quarries at Drewsteignton worked for agricultural lime and hydraulic cement. The quarries at Drewsteignton were worked extensively before the commencement of the last century. Some further detail included regarding the extent of the workings and composition of the beds of rock.

Worth, R. N., 1875, The Economic Geology of Devon, 213 (Article in Serial). SDV24522.

Blackaller Quarry. Several other smaller quarries in this area. Worked as a source of lime for agricultural use.

Ordnance Survey, 1880-1899, First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map (Cartographic). SDV336179.

'Drewsteignton Quarries' depicted on the late 19th century historic map. Map object based on this source.

Royal Air Force, 1946, RAF/3G/TUD/138, 5452 (Aerial Photograph). SDV229649.

Greig, O., 1960, Flora of the Lime Quarry Pools of North West Devon, 238 (Article in Serial). SDV238836.

One of the Drewsteignton quarries. A limestone quarry closed in the 1880s and now (1960) water-filled.

Griffiths, D. M., 1984, Cottages at Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton, 15/2/1984 (Worksheet). SDV274094.

The quarry is now being reworked, though as yet most of the old quarry itself survives as a pond, and it is the old spoil heaps which have been destroyed.

Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England, 1985, Aerial Photograph Project (Interpretation). SDV319854.

Quarry visible on 1946 aerial photographs, also at SX72719142.

Greener, P., 1990, Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton, 14/2/1990 (Correspondence). SDV227359.

Letter to Devon County Council states that since the Devon County inspection of the quarry a few years ago, in moving a heap of spoil, three old limekilns were uncovered. The quarry is currently on the market. A certain amount of rock is being salvaged and the limekilns are gradually disappearing (see photographs).
The landscape in the immediate area is constantly changing. On the tithe map there was a large mound in the vicinity with two circular bases, presumably for the 'pylons' to carry the chains driving the hoist for stone from the pit. The lime came up on a small railway - the odd rail is still visible. The lime quarrying operations came to an abrupt end in 1906 when the pump for the pit failed one weekend and last of the seven houses was abandoned in 1928.

Greener, P., 1990, Photographs of Blackaller Quarry (Photograph). SDV227348.

Images of the kilns, which are currently under threat.

Clark, S., 1995, Mining and Quarrying in the Teign Valley, 6-8 (Monograph). SDV351366.

Black Aller Quarry. Clark states that limestone was first extracted from this site in the late 19th century and the high grade stone produced was used widely in the area for construction and road-building. The full extraction area of the site covered 20 acres and included two large pits, one of which was filled with water in 1909. Lime kilns are still visible, but in a crumbling, ivy-covered state. The operation would have employed a number of men; as many as 25 could have been involved in the operations. High on the south side of the narrow approach road was the site of several cottages once occupied by quarry workers and known as Kiln Village.
Mr Harold Partridge, the quarry's former owner, handed the business to his son Alan, whose wife managed the firm after his death until the enterprise was sold to Bardon Roadstone Ltd. Company closed down in 1991.

Ordnance Survey, 2018, MasterMap 2018 (Cartographic). SDV360652.

'Blackaller Quarry (disused)' depicted on the modern mapping. Map object based on this source.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV227348Photograph: Greener, P.. 1990. Photographs of Blackaller Quarry. Digital.
SDV227353Article in Serial: Omerod, G. W.. 1867. Carboniferous Beds on the Northern Edge of Dartmoor. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 2. Digital. 124.
SDV227358Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1803-1804. Ordnance Survey Drawing 26 east. Unknown. Unknown.
SDV227359Correspondence: Greener, P.. 1990. Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton. Letter. Digital. 14/2/1990.
SDV229649Aerial Photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946. RAF/3G/TUD/138. Royal Air Force Aerial Photograph. Unknown. 5452.
SDV238836Article in Serial: Greig, O.. 1960. Flora of the Lime Quarry Pools of North West Devon. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 92. Unknown. 238.
SDV24522Article in Serial: Worth, R. N.. 1875. The Economic Geology of Devon. Transactions of the Devonshire Association. 7. Digital. 213.
SDV274094Worksheet: Griffiths, D. M.. 1984. Cottages at Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton. Worksheet. Digital. 15/2/1984.
SDV294343Monograph: Vancouver, C.. 1808. General View of the Agriculture of the County of Devon. General View of the Agriculture of the County of Devon. Hardback Volume. 60-1.
SDV319854Interpretation: Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England. 1985. Aerial Photograph Project. Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England Aerial Photograph P. Cartographic.
SDV336179Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 1880-1899. First Edition Ordnance 25 inch map. First Edition Ordnance Survey 25 inch Map. Map (Digital).
SDV351366Monograph: Clark, S.. 1995. Mining and Quarrying in the Teign Valley. Mining and Quarrying in the Teign Valley. Paperback Volume. 6-8.
SDV359954Cartographic: South West Heritage Trust. 1838-1848. Digitised Tithe Maps and Transcribed Apportionments. Tithe Map and Apportionment. Digital.
SDV360652Cartographic: Ordnance Survey. 2018. MasterMap 2018. Ordnance Survey Digital Mapping. Digital.

Associated Monuments

MDV22310Parent of: Abandoned quarry workers hamlet at Drewsteignton (Building)
MDV37743Parent of: Blackaller Quarry Railway (Monument)
MDV22309Parent of: Lime Kiln at Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton (Monument)
MDV22308Parent of: Lime Kilns at Blackaller Quarry, Drewsteignton (Monument)
MDV120634Related to: Bacthorn, Drewsteignton (Monument)
MDV22311Related to: Quarry north-west of Drewsteignton (Monument)

Associated Finds: none recorded

Associated Events: none recorded

Date Last Edited:Jan 9 2018 11:24AM