The article on the previous page was written many years ago and since that time the M.I.A.C. has gathered together much further information that adds to the story of quarrying on the Malvern Hills.
The Malvern Hills Conservators have allowed the M.I.A.C. access to their photographic archive and they have kindly given permission for some of these photographs to be reproduced on this site.
In addition the opportunity has been taken to photograph the quarry sites and these photographs are included in this update.
Malvern Hills Conservators
The Malvern Hills Conservators came into being in 1884 following the Royal Ascent to the Malvern Hills Act, 1884. This act was not primarily concerned with the then small scale quarrying in the Malvern Hills and unfortunately served only to confirm existing rights to mine for stone in the hills.
This is a photograph that is clearly the quarry that later became known as 'West of England Quarry'. This photograph probably dates from about 1900 and was almost certainly taken before the narrow gauge railway had been built from here towards Colwall.
This photograph is used with the permission of the Malvern Hills Conservators.
Quarrying on a large scale did not become a problem until 1907 when the Pyx Granite Company Limited obtained from the Berington's a licence to quarry on land at Little Malvern and later on North Hill. Indeed by 1912 so much stone was being quarried that the main road to the G.W.R. station at Malvern Wells had become badly damaged by lorry tracks and was practically impassible. The same problem affected the road from North Malvern to Malvern Link station.
The conservators obtained further powers as a result of the Malvern Hills Act 1924 and for the first time were able to rise funds locally and to compulsorily purchase some of the quarries. This Act stated that all quarrying on the Malvern Hills was to cease by June 1960. However inadequate funds were available to enable all of the quarries to be bought out and the compulsory purchase powers ran out in 1929 before the task could be completed. The Act include provisions for the purchase of the Berington's quarry at Little Malvern.
The references to various quarries by name is very confusing as these names were not officially bestowed on the quarries and were not generally used when the quarries were in production. To further add to the problem some quarries ended up overlapping or obscuring earlier workings. For this reason where possible grid references that refer to the centre of operations are used in this article together with the modern day names on the sign posts provided by the conservators.
Early purchases left five large quarries in use after 1945. These were at:
Hollybush. This quarry is on land that is a part of the Eastnor Castle estate at the southern end of the hills.
The Gullet, Castlemorton. The final quarry to close in December 1977. Gullet Quarry is situated on the southern part of the hills and can be reached off Castlemorton Common. It is now an attractive picnic site with an adjacent car park.
Earnslaw Quarry. operated by the Malvern Hill Granite Company Limited. This was subsequently bought by the Worcestershire County Council and leased to the Malvern Hills Conservators who built a car park on the site.
North Hill. A large quarry situated just off the North Malvern Road.
End Hill. Tank Quarry owned by the Pyx Granite Co Ltd. This large quarry closed in 1970.
Click here for small quarries index page
Click here for original article