Coldstones Quarry is probably
the highest quarry in England. It is situated close to the
village of Greenhow on the western edge of Nidderdale, 3 miles
from Pateley Bridge.
This wild moorland area was
once the centre of a thriving lead industry which reached its
heyday in the mid 19th century, then gradually declined.
Several small limestone quarries
have operated around Greenhow over the last two centuries.
These quarries produced agricultural and mortar lime as well
as crushed aggregate for roadstone. In the early 1900ís the
surrounding hills were dominated by building stone quarries.
One by one the other quarries closed until Coldstones became
the last operating quarry in the area.
quarry currently covers an area of about 0.2km2.
It is worked on 4 benches, 15-20m high, to a depth of 346m
O.D. in the centre of the quarry (1999) with permission to
deepen to 300m.
Coldstones Quarry is owned by the Pioneer
Group and is well placed to provide the north and west Yorkshire
areas with a secure supply of aggregates for the future. In 1992
the planning permission for the quarry was extended for another
The scars of the areas industrial
past have healed and Coldstones Quarry now stands within the
Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It lies hidden
behind a landscaped bank formed from the rocks which covered
1998 Coldstones Quarry achieved both a 5 Star Environmental
Award from the Quarry Products Association and the Harrogate
Borough Council Special Award for Environmental Excellence.
This recognised Pioneer's educational work with local schools
and its active support of the local heritage initiative.