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Geology of Area
The Quarries
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The Ridge is formed from limestones, mudstones, and sandstones of the Carboniferous age. Productus giganteum, the type of fossil pictured here was found at The Ridge. The quality of the limestone has encouraged extraction for at least the last 200 years and probably many more.

Quarrying rose in importance from the early 19th century when roads and industry began to develop rapidly. Many economic benefits came to Chipping Sodbury which profited as a ‘transport town’. Pack horses and mule trains carried coal and lime to destinations lying as far away as Berkshire.

QuarryQuarrying has made a great impact on the landscape in and around The Ridge. Nearby Barnhill Quarry is now designated as being of regional importance geologically. Of particular significance is a section of limestone pavement, which is recognised as a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Food, fertilizer & blue bags

The quarried stone is used for a variety of purposes including the construction of roads and buildings, animal foodstuffs and fertilizers. Lime was also used to produce whitewash which was very popular as a paint for ceilings and pig sties. Local people used it but it was also utilised by the Badminton Estate. It was an ingredient of the ‘blue bags’ used to improve the appearance of laundry. There are stories of a Chipping Sodbury baker who used the contents of blue bags to give a brilliant finish to his cake icing!

Many thanks to Hanson for supplying text and images.

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Montage of photos from Ridge Wood