The Llandraw Quarry produces a lovely thin-bed natural sandstone which is predominantly grey/green in colour with beautiful warm russet tones. It splits into layers of approx 15-75mm thickness and is ideal for traditional roofing tiles, flagstone flooring, cobbles and hearthstones.
Sandstone has been quarried from the Llandraw site for many years. It will be familiar to anyone that has spent time in the Black Mountains and Herefordshire, because Llandraw stone has been used to build roofs in this region for centuries. When the site became available in 2006 we jumped at the opportunity to work it, because the stone it yields is the perfect complement to the building stone quarried from our original site in Tybubach.
The sandstone here at the foot of the Black Mountains is geologically classed as Old Devonian Red. Sandstone is a sedimentary rock made up of sand-sizes particles of minerals, and can be any colour depending on where in the world it has settled. Here in the Black Mountains the stone is green/grey in colour, with some warm russet hues. It’s a unique colour combination that has made it popular all over the UK.
(For the record, we should say that because the stone slabs are removed from a stratum of rock which is near the surface, and because the quarry is relatively small, technically the site at Llandraw is classed as a “delve” rather than a true quarry.)
Once lifted from the delve the stone slabs are split by hand. In fact, most of the splitting and finishing done at Llandraw is skilled hand-work carried out by experienced stone masons. The rock contains natural laminations and bedding planes; our stone masons work with these properties to split the stone along its planes, preserving its natural beauty and character. The resulting thickness of stone varies from 15mm – 75mm, but will be different with each seam. The sandstone is often extracted to order, so that the appropriate splitting and hand finishing can be carried out according to the customer’s specific requirements.
Historically, Llandraw sandstone has been mostly used for traditional stone roof tiles. Today its popularity for restoration and conservation work has extended beyond the region right across the UK Superior quality sandstone from Herefordshire, ideal for flagstones, traditional roofing tiles, natural stone paving, cobbles and hearthstones. into Europe. In 2012 Black Mountain Quarries was proud to win the National Federation Roofing Award in the Heritage category for the Crew Municipal Building. The roof was built with our traditional hand-finished Llandraw stone roofing tiles.
As well as historical renovations Llandraw sandstone has also become very popular for refurbishments, extensions and even new builds. Planners frequently support the use of traditional high quality materials in the modern built environment in order to help preserve regional cultural integrity.
Black Mountain Quarries is proud to have been able to support conservation work in the locality by making Llandraw sandstone more accessible and affordable. We are delighted that its popularity has spread nationally so that its exceptional colouring and quality can be appreciated all over the UK.