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Blairadam Brick And Tile Works

Brickfield (19th Century), Brickworks (19th Century), Tile Works (19th Century)

Site Name Blairadam Brick And Tile Works

Classification Brickfield (19th Century), Brickworks (19th Century), Tile Works (19th Century)

Alternative Name(s) Lassodie; Whitehouse Wood;thornton Wood

Canmore ID 79267

Site Number NT19SW 29

NGR NT 1200 9360

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/79267

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

  • Council Fife
  • Parish Beath
  • Former Region Fife
  • Former District Dunfermline
  • Former County Fife

Archaeology Notes

NT19SW 29 1200 9360

The site of Blairadam Brick and Tile Works (depicted on the 1st edition of the OS 6-inch map (Fife & Kinross, 1856, sheet 30) lies in Whitehouse Wood, a dense forestry plantation. No trace of it was located at the date of visit.

Blairadam brickworks was in use over a long period and was finally demolished in 1979.

(Cleish91 136-137)

Visited by RCAHMS (SH) 5 September 1991.

NT 12 94 An archaeological desk-based and field evaluation was undertaken in December 1995 and January 1996 as a part of an Environmental Assessment associated with a proposed opencast coal mine. Parts of the proposed development area have been subject to previous opencast mining operations.

Most of the remains identified are of industrial archaeological interest. The work suggests that the survey area has small sectors containing sites of archaeological importance, but is generally of low archaeological potential.

The following site was among those identified:

NT 120 936 Blairadam brick and tile works; brick field (NT19SW 29).

A detailed report will be lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsor: J W H Ross & Company on behalf of William W Graham (Contractors) Ltd.

R Strachan 1996

NT 1200 9400 (centre) A watching brief was undertaken as part of an Environmental Assessment at the opencast coal site of Blairenbathie. The site of a former 19th-century brick and tile works and two domestic cottages, identified in a previous evaluation (Strachan 1996), were examined, as well as additional structures.

A small rectangular building measuring 10 x 5m was identified as a workers' lobby (rest room). Within the W end of this small room, the remains of an iron grate were found in situ. The foundations of the building comprised waster drainage tiles which show that this building was not a primary component of the brick and tile works.

A kiln was situated about 10m W of the workers' lobby. Its rectangular outer walls measured 12.3 x 8m and were constructed of bonded brick. The kiln chamber floor lay 1.5m below the present ground surface and was found to be heavily disturbed, although ten courses of brick survived on its western side. The positions of the fire boxes (stoking holes where coal was laid) could not be determined. It is considered, from the remains of fragments of brick-arch, that the kiln was a single-chambered rectangular Scottish updraught example with arches over the fire boxes.

Rubble was cleared from an L-shaped building situated to the NE of this, perhaps associated with the Blairenbathie Coal Pit (which was abandoned in 1876). The building walls were of bonded brick (stamped HILL OF BEATH) and enclosed the vestigial remains of a tiled floor.

A detailed report will be lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsor: William W Graham (Contractors) Ltd.

M Cressey 1998

Activities

Field Visit (5 September 1991)

The site of Blairadam Brick and Tile Works (depicted on the 1st edition of the OS 6-inch map (Fife & Kinross, 1856, sheet 30) lies in Whitehouse Wood, a dense forestry plantation. No trace of it was located at the date of visit.

Blairadam brickworks was in use over a long period and was finally demolished in 1979.

(Cleish91 136-137)

Visited by RCAHMS (SH) 5 September 1991.

Desk Based Assessment (December 1995 - January 1996)

NT 12 94 An archaeological desk-based and field evaluation was undertaken in December 1995 and January 1996 as a part of an Environmental Assessment associated with a proposed opencast coal mine. Parts of the proposed development area have been subject to previous opencast mining operations.

Most of the remains identified are of industrial archaeological interest. The work suggests that the survey area has small sectors containing sites of archaeological importance, but is generally of low archaeological potential.

A detailed report will be lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsor: J W H Ross & Company on behalf of William W Graham (Contractors) Ltd.

R Strachan 1996

Field Visit (December 1995 - January 1996)

NT 12 94 An archaeological desk-based and field evaluation was undertaken in December 1995 and January 1996 as a part of an Environmental Assessment associated with a proposed opencast coal mine. Parts of the proposed development area have been subject to previous opencast mining operations.

Most of the remains identified are of industrial archaeological interest. The work suggests that the survey area has small sectors containing sites of archaeological importance, but is generally of low archaeological potential.

A detailed report will be lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsor: J W H Ross & Company on behalf of William W Graham (Contractors) Ltd.

R Strachan 1996

Watching Brief (1998)

NT 1200 9400 (centre) A watching brief was undertaken as part of an Environmental Assessment at the opencast coal site of Blairenbathie. The site of a former 19th-century brick and tile works and two domestic cottages, identified in a previous evaluation (Strachan 1996), were examined, as well as additional structures.

A small rectangular building measuring 10 x 5m was identified as a workers' lobby (rest room). Within the W end of this small room, the remains of an iron grate were found in situ. The foundations of the building comprised waster drainage tiles which show that this building was not a primary component of the brick and tile works.

A kiln was situated about 10m W of the workers' lobby. Its rectangular outer walls measured 12.3 x 8m and were constructed of bonded brick. The kiln chamber floor lay 1.5m below the present ground surface and was found to be heavily disturbed, although ten courses of brick survived on its western side. The positions of the fire boxes (stoking holes where coal was laid) could not be determined. It is considered, from the remains of fragments of brick-arch, that the kiln was a single-chambered rectangular Scottish updraught example with arches over the fire boxes.

Rubble was cleared from an L-shaped building situated to the NE of this, perhaps associated with the Blairenbathie Coal Pit (which was abandoned in 1876). The building walls were of bonded brick (stamped HILL OF BEATH) and enclosed the vestigial remains of a tiled floor.

A detailed report will be lodged with the NMRS.

Sponsor: William W Graham (Contractors) Ltd.

M Cressey 1998

Ground Survey (29 August 2009 - 28 September 2009)

NT 105 945 (centred on) A desk-based assessment and walkover survey of Blairadam Forest were undertaken to enable the FCS to make informed decisions on the management of the cultural heritage within it. The forest lies W of the M90 motorway, near Kelty, and measures c12sqkm. Sites identified in the assessment were visited over several days between 29 August and 28 September 2009. The survey found that many of the boundaries that once belonged to Blairadam estate can still be identified in the forest. The boundaries (comprising tree-lined banks, ha-has and walls), belong to the designed landscape created by the Adam family over three generations between 1733 and 1834. It was possible, in many areas, to distinguish between three different phases of boundary alterations. The survey also found extensive mining remains along three different burns, some of which may date to the medieval period. The most extensive of these remains was an area of bell pits dating to the 18th century and possibly earlier. Later mining remains included a possible 19th-century mine almost hidden along the Kelty Burn, as well as remains of Blairenbathie Colliery and a later drift mine dating to the 1940s. The ruins of two farmsteads were found on the periphery of the forest close to the large opencast mine, as well as a possible WW2 watchtower. Other sites of interest included several reservoirs, waterworks and dams, the ruins of two cottages, and a great many quarries. As part of the study a suite of GIS shape files and a database were created to help with future mitigation.

Archive: RCAHMS

Funder: Forestry Commission of Scotland

Tamlin Barton, David Perry, Ray Cachart and David Bowler - Alder Archaeology Ltd

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