Here are three photographs from a fabulous quarry I recently visited near Bradford in West Yorkshire. Wonderful, friendly, warm hearted people made me so welcome. Their skill and dedication I know I am going to always remember.
My journey was to find British stone, because I find it increasingly difficult to reconcile bringing stone from the other side of our precious planet, and also knowing that working conditions there are often unacceptable. As the years go by, I become convinced that using local stone in a garden is always successful, it seems immediately in place, natural and simply beautiful.
Of course the money cost of stone is always such a consideration, and British stone is so often undercut by imported. But in this Yorkshire quarry, timeless skill handed down through generations is continued every day by enough people valuing a first class stone for paving, top of the tree, worldwide, a national treasure and something to be proud of, and something to support. £70 a square yard + VAT for new is a competitive price to buy at. From the photograph you will see that they also sell old York paving stone too, many of them were so splendid, huge in size and wonderful colours and surfaces. As good as the York paving outside the entrance to The British Museum. These are £120 a square yard + VAT. In so many ways, a great investment!
We often think of York stone for paving, but this quarry is also making walling stone, smooth ashlar squared blocks, and shaped architectural stone, the only limitation being the natural size of the blocks which are quarried, and goodness some of these are big! But they move these huge pieces as though they were a packet of cornflakes! The word that keeps coming back to me is unbelievable!