Open cast quarrying at Stoke Hill Mine dates back to the mid-fifteenth century. It is clear it quickly gathered a prestigious name because it was specified for part of the construction of Longleat House in 1568.
The Romans were prolific users of Bath stone in their buildings with evidence for its use being found in several villas as well as the iconic Roman Baths in Bath.
Mining at Stoke Hill is likely to have started in the early 19th century. It continued until the outbreak of World War II when the mine was requisitioned by the government and used for ammunition storage. The brick reinforcement of the pillars in the central area of the mine still remain from this period. The mine remained mothballed until it was acquired by the Bath Stone Company in 1982 after an increased interest in building heritage and conservation. It was officially then reopened in 1983.
Stone from the mine has been used in many prestigious projects including the restoration of Windsor Castle after the great fire there in 1992, the Roman Baths in the UNESCO World heritage City of Bath, Britain’s oldest lido – The Cleveland Pool and many more.
Stone is extracted from two beds; the ‘Top bed’ which is around 1.6m thick and that which was that traditionally extracted at the site. The more durable ‘Base bed’ is thinner, at around 1m and separated from the top bed by a thin clay band.
View our video of the Stoke Hill Mine:
Sensitive and sustainable mining
We mine each of our assets sustainably and sensitively with the greatest of respect for the natural environment and the health and safety of our workers.
We plan our operations with the utmost thought and care. We invest intelligently in state of the art mining equipment so we always have the latest technology to support our operations. All our personnel are trained to the highest standards of health and safety and we have an in-house Rescue Team. We work closely with HM Inspectorate of Mines and strictly adhere to the The Mines Regulations 2014.
In this way, we can ensure Stoke Hill Mine can continue to be a source of stone for generations to come.
Staff safety is the highest priority for Bath Stone Company
Staff safety is the highest priority for Bath Stone Company with possible roof falls and the hazards of lifting large blocks of stone. We follow proper safety procedures and actively learn from the methods used in other mines to constantly improve our own practices.
Bath Stone Company actively promotes the development of compulsory qualifications for management at stone mines, which previously hasn’t been required in the same way as at coal mines.
Annual medicals, health insurance, ongoing training, tool box talks, regular environmental sampling by independent contractors and a tight knit management structure all go toward looking after our most important assets.
In this way, we can ensure our mines can continue to be a source of stone for generations to come.
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