King Barrow Quarry

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File:King Barrow Quarry, Portland.JPG
Overhead view of King Barrow Quarry, looking towards The Grove village area.

King Barrow Quarry is a disused site of former 19th century stone quarries on the Isle of Portland, Dorset, England. It is located in the north-east corner of Tophill. The quarry, now a Dorset Wildlife Trust nature reserve, covers 12.2 hectares.[1] Both King Barrow and the nearby Tout Quarry make up the Dorset Wildlife Trust's Portland Quarries Nature Park. Portland also has two butterfly reserves; Broadcroft Quarry and Perryfield Quarry.

History and Nature Reserve status

The site is based on former quarries that were abandoned 100 years ago. In the nineteenth century there was extensive quarrying in the area.[2] When the area was first quarried, huge numbers of Roman artifacts were discovered.[3] Since being abandoned the area had been left to regenerate naturally, with the aid of scrub management.[4]

Since around 2004 the quarry became a nature reserve after the then-site owners handed the quarry over to the Dorset Wildlife Trust.[5] The quarry then became known as King Barrow Quarries Nature Reserve.[6]

Within the quarry there are relics of past industrial activities. Various blocks of cut stone remain, as do pieces of tramway track. A quarryman's shelter and tunnel still remains too. This was the original route of a horse-drawn tramway that took stone from the quarry to the Merchant's Railway.

Wildlife

The quarry's rocky slopes, grassy pockets and sheltered gullies are all havens for wildlife, and therefore features a wide range of plants and animals, hosting flora and fauna specific to limestone soil.[7] Described as one of Portland's prime nature habitats,[8] the thin limestone soils have been slowly colonised by a variety of wildflowers. King Barrow Quarries is particularly known for its blue butterflies and bird species.[1]

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 Powered by Intergage www.intergage.co.uk (11 October 2012). "King Barrow Quarries: a Dorset Wildlife Trust reserve". Dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Isle of Portland Quarries - Geology by Ian West". Southampton.ac.uk. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "New Ground and Tillycoombe, Portland, Dorset". Geoffkirby.co.uk. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Historic England. "Monument No. 1466201". PastScape. Retrieved 5 October 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. "Temporary truce agreed for quarry (From Dorset Echo)". Dorsetecho.co.uk. 3 September 2003. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "BBC - Butterflies thrive on disused Portland quarry site". BBC News. 4 June 2010. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. "Dorset 2010 day four". Renewton.plus.com. 18 October 2010. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. Powered by Intergage www.intergage.co.uk (11 October 2012). "Keep warm with wildlife work". Dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk. Retrieved 23 January 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

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