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Belnahua, Slate Quarries

Slate Quarry(S) (19th Century)

Site Name Belnahua, Slate Quarries

Classification Slate Quarry(S) (19th Century)

Canmore ID 22639

Site Number NM71SW 2

NGR NM 7130 1270

NGR Description Centred NM 7130 1270

Datum OSGB36 - NGR


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Argyll And Bute
  • Parish Jura
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Argyll And Bute
  • Former County Argyll

Archaeology Notes

NM71SW 2 centred 7130 1270

(Location cited as NM 713 127). 19th century. The flooded pit of a large quarry, with ruins of houses and workshops.

J R Hume 1977.

See also SIAS survey MS500/4/8, photographic and sketch survey of remains


Diver Inspection (12 October 2015 - 28 February 2017)

NM 7139 1274 Work to assess, survey and record the submerged evidence for slate quarrying and related activities at Belnahua in the Firth of Lorn was undertaken 12 October 2015 – 9 September 2016.

The two slate quarries were abandoned during WW1. They flooded after pumping ceased and have since, apart from one unsuccessful attempt at salvage in the 1940s, been left untouched. Although some underwater photography of quarry features had been undertaken prior to 2015, no

archaeological survey had been carried out.

The archive assessment produced an archive of 550 digital files. Relevant material included terrestrial surveys and mapping, an equipment inventory of the similar Toberonochy quarry and an overview of the slate quarrying history in Scotland.

The snorkel and dive survey located, mapped and recorded a total of 31 archaeological features. Most have been identified and include slate bogeys, wall structures, pipes, rails, fire beaters, machinery and pottery. Three areas relating to different work processes were identified within

the quarries: slate extraction, slate processing and slate waste areas. Photographs were geotagged using a GPS buoy. Since the project was commissioned, the quarries have been added to the schedule of nationally important monuments (SM13216).

Archive: Historic Environment Scotland

Funder: Historic Environment Scotland

Isger Vico Sommer and Dan Atkinson – Wessex Archaeology

(Source: DES, Volume 17)

OASIS ID: waherita1-298338


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