Bole Hill - an industrial history

A historic photo of a quarry wagon way imposed on the present day site

Bole Hill is now a quiet corner of Longshaw, covered by silver birch trees. But 120 years ago, this landscape was heavily industrial, with a bustling and sometimes conflicting community of workers and locals.

It's hard to imagine Bole Hill, near Padley Gorge, as a noisy, dangerous and heavily industrial place. But up to 104 years ago, the Quarry would have dominated the landscape and local community. Our volunteer historian, Thelma Griffiths, has researched the  life of the quarry and its workers. The records used here are by kind permission of Derbyshire Record Office and photos are courtesy Kev Dunnington.

A walking group admire Bole Hill Quarry

29 August 1905 -  "If there is any more of this rowdyism the hutkeeper will have to give up possession of the hut, as I am determined not to have any more of it.’ - B Bradley, Quarry Manager

This is just one clipping from the Bole Hill Quarry notices, a book full of glimpes of life as a worker at Bole Hill Quarry in the 1910s. From accidents and fatalities to details of how much workers were paid and their living conditions, we have a picture of what the quarry would have been like. Please click on the link to our pdf to find out more.

The history of Bole Hill Quarry (PDF / 0.4MB) download

These days, Bole Hill is a quiet hillside covered in silver birch trees, a great place to look for birds and fungi. Our running routes are available from the shop and will guide you through the woods and clues to the past.

Birch Polypore

Our free weekly guided walks are at 11am on Wednesdays and Sundays; meet at the Tea Room and be swept into Longshaw's past. Routes include Bole Hill, and other places on the estate with a fascinating history.