MDE21127 - South Down Quarry and Beacon Down Quarry (Monument)


The quarries are shown on historic mapping. Beacon Down Quarry is located on the site of an old beacon.

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Type and Period (2)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A beacon is shown on the 25 inch 1st Edition Ordnance Survey map at SS 6656 4591, with no quarrying activity indicated in this area. South Down Quarry is a small feature shown at SS 6673 4579. [1] 'Beacon Quarry' and 'South Down Quarry (Disused)' shown on the six inch 2nd Edition map. [2] 'Beacon Down Quarry (Disused)' shown on the six inch 1963 Ordnance Survey map. This quarry covers a much wider area than the two quarries mentioned above on the 2nd Edition map, although the new name indicates a merging of the two quarries into one at some time. [3,4] Beacon Down Quarry. Gritstone. Operated by Devon County Council in 1937, employing 17. Quarry was worked for road stone but also produced a good stenning stone. In order to get stone down drifts were driven and then blown to produce stone. The question of the presence of the narrow gauge locomotive is often questioned. There was no rail network in the quarry and the locomotives were stored there and used on road schemes when required running on temporary track laid along the route of the road. Tom Barrow was Quarry Foreman in the 1950s. [5,6] Beacon Down Quarry is depicted on the 2020 MasterMap data but is shown as disused. The site does not extend as far to the southeast as the originial location of South Down Quarry, suggesting the two did not merge. The latter is now shown on the MasterMap data. [7,8]

Sources/Archives (8)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1892-1906. County Series, 2nd Edition 6 Inch Map. 1:10560. 1903, 6NE.
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1963. 6 Inch Map: 1963.
  • <4> Archive: Devon County Council. Various. Devon SMR / HER records / parish files - Exmoor records. A Bowman, List of quarries.
  • <5> Verbal communication: Various. Various. Oral Information. D Joy, Former Road Foreman.
  • <6> Monograph: Bowman, A.C.. 1998. British Quarrying History.
  • <7> Map: Ordnance Survey. 2020. MasterMap data. 1:2,500.
  • <8> Verbal communication: Various. 1993-. Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Team staff comments. Catherine Dove, 21 October 2020.



Grid reference Centred SS 6664 4586 (221m by 167m)
Map sheet SS64NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (2)

Related Events/Activities (0)

External Links (0)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 31414
  • Devon SMR: SS64NE/108

Record last edited

Oct 27 2020 3:45PM


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