QUARRIES OF THE LAKE DISTRICT
With its wealth of rock types and their abundance in the landscape, mining and quarrying have long been significant activities in the Lake District. A strong industrial aesthetic of diagonal, circular and fractured structures is diametrically opposed to the flowing fields, farmland and trees of the picturesque landscape. High in the hills above Kirkstone, or deep in a cut quarry at Kirkby, the shapes and colours of the slate attack the senses – sound, sight and smell. The weather moves fast here at all times of year, the softness of the lit clouds, the rippled reflections in water and the sharp expression of plane amongst the immense piles and faces of slate forge a varied and overwhelming visual scene. The dereliction of Kirkstone is a reflection of our increasingly globalized world, in which it is more cost-efficient to ship slate from China for architectural projects in the UK.