CALCH: Project Summary
CALCH (the Welsh word for ‘lime’) is a the name of a partnership project between Brecon Beacons National Park Authority, Dyfed Archaeological Trust, the National Museum of Wales and the Black Mountain Centre in Brynaman. The project is working to discover, celebrate and repair the remains of the lime industry on the Black Mountain in Carmarthenshire.
The quarries are part of a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) and lie within a Registered Landscape of Outstanding Historic Interest. They also lie within the Fforest Fawr Geopark and are a Regionally Important Geodiversity Site (RIGS). However, the archaeological and industrial heritage of the quarries has received much less attention.
Lime has played an important role in the development of Wales. As well as its use as a building material, lime was used in agriculture to transform acid soils into productive farmland. So when people flocked to work in the developing industrial regions of Wales, it was lime that enabled them to be fed and housed. As the demand for lime grew, Turnpike Companies grew up, improving the roads on which lime was transported from the quarries. The level of tolls charged to use these roads for transporting lime was one of the main causes of the famous Rebecca Riots; an iconic moment in Wales’s history.
At Herbert’s Quarry, the focus of the CALCH project is on the surviving lime kilns which demonstrate the development of lime production over a 200 year period spanning the transition from pre-industrial exploitation to full industrialisation. The kilns are now suffering significant damage due to the effects of the weather in this exposed upland landscape. CALCH will ensure the long term survival of these remains and by developing trails around the site and providing on-site interpretation. By the end of the project Herbert’s Quarry will be a fascinating place to visit and to learn about the industrial heritage, wildlife, social history and geology of the area, and an asset to local communities.
Volunteer involvement is crucial to the success of the project. Over the next year and a half there will be many events and activities to accompany the repair works, with walks, talks and opportunities for schools, groups and volunteers to get involved in all sorts of ways. CALCH will also encourage communities to develop and achieve their own ideas of how to celebrate their lime heritage.
To find out more about CALCH please contact Duncan Schlee at the Dyfed Archaeological Trust or keep an eye on our web site for updates on the project and news of events.
Dyfed Archaeological Trust Limited, The Shire Hall, Carmarthen Street, Llandeilo, Carmarthenshire SA19 6AF.
Tel: General Enquiries 01558 823121; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Website: CALCH∞ or Dyfed Archaeological trust∞
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