Our Mines

 

Portland Stone is widely acknowledged to be one of the World’s most prestigious building materials. Albion Stone has its own vast reserves of Portland limestone which we extract from our own mines. This effectively eliminates the chances of supply chain issues for our clients and gives the company full quality control over the raw material being processed on behalf of those clients, through the mines to our own factory.

Albion Stone has invested heavily in much state-of-the-art mining and stone processing machinery which yields many important benefits, particularly in terms of safety, efficiency, accuracy, and environmental impacts. Maintaining these standards is of paramount importance to the company and as such our performance is regularly assessed and accredited by the completely independent British Standards Institute.

Current Mines

o   Jordans / Bowers mine complex

The first Portland Stone mine operation began with the trial mine in Bowers Quarry in 2002, and this extended into high wall mining of the entire boundary in 2006. 

In 2008 the mining operations moved to Jordans mine, initially starting under the Red Triangle cricket club, but later extending under the road to the Royal Manor school tennis courts.  With further successful planning permissions for reserves under the YMCA building, churchyard and cemetery and the mining operation again went under roads, Weston Road and Wide Street, to access more previously unobtainable reserves. 

At the same time the Bowers mining operations proceeded under the former school playing fields to the south of Bowers Quarry and also to the east under the churchyard to meet the Jordans mining operation, linking in November 2019. 

Stones extraction from the Jordans / Bowers mining complex include, Grove Whitbed, Fancy Beach Whitbed, Jordans Whitbed, Ostrea Patch Reef Whitbed, Jordans Basebed, Bowers Roach, Bowers Whitbed and Jordan Basebed (although these later two are now sold as Jordans Whitbed and Jordan Basebed as the stone are extracted from the same location so identical)

Reserves at anticipated level of extraction are likely to last until the early 2040’s. 

o   Stonehills

Albion Stone secured planning permission for the first completely new mining permission in UK for many years in 2001.  Enabling work has been completed over a number of years, including avoiding nesting skylarks and minimising the impact on the landscape.  Extraction began in 2021 and we are extracting an excellent quality clean Stonehills Whitbed.

At projective levels for extraction the reserves at Stonehills will be likely to last at least 50 years, but with increasingly sophisticated method of extraction we expect that the stone will probably last significantly longer. 

 

Historical Quarries operated by Albion Stone

o   Jordans

Jordans is part of Inmosthay Quarry in the centre of the Island, which also includes Fancy Beach. It has been worked reasonably consistently since the late 1800’s until the final stones were extracted in 2015.

Albion Stone voluntarily surrendered the quarrying planning permission for the stone under the cricket pitch and applied for a mining permission and began mining in 2008. 

Further reserves to the north, have been designated as part of the 'Site of Special Scientific Interest' (SSSI) and these have also been surrendered and will be incorporated into the final restoration scheme. 

The stones coming from this site were: Jordans Basebed, Jordans Whitbed, Jordans Roach, Grove Whitbed and Fancy Beach Whitbed.

o   Bowers

The Bowers Quarry has been operational from the late 1700’s through to the 1930’s, then again when Albion Stone acquired the lease from the Crown Estate in 1979. 

Albion Stone voluntarily surrendered planning permissions to quarry stone to the south of the site, and instead sort permission to extract the stone through more sustainable and environmentally sensitive mining. 

The stones coming from this quarry were: Bowers Roach, Bowers Lynham and Saunders Whitbed & Bowers Basebed.  

o   Independent / Admiralty

Both these quarries are owned by The Crown Estate and have been leased to us since 1982.  These quarries have been worked since the mid-1800’s originally using convict labour from the nearby prison but became Independent with the final dimension stones coming out in 2006, although some limited stocks of block still remain. 

Stone extracted from this site were: Independent Basebed, Independent Top Whitbed and Independent Bottom Whitbed, Admiralty Basebed & Admiralty Whitbed.

 

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Albion Stone, a fourth generation family business pride ourselves on having a helpful and skilled workforce as well as modern and traditional manufacturing process to enable us to produce the highest quality Portland Stone with minimal environmental impact.