Stainton with Adgarley
Last Updated: 19 February 2014

Across Stainton Green

Looking across Stainton Green in the direction of Adgarley
Stainton with Adgarley is a composite of two adjoining settlements, Adgarley to the east and Stainton to the west.  The large village green, predominantly part of Adgarley, bears testimony to the limestone geology of this entire parish.  It has numerous, and in some instances very large, limestone boulders left scattered across the grass, resting in the place where they descended from the melting ice of bygone glaciations.

Adgarley with Devonshire Quarry behind

Immediately behind the village is the large limestone quarry operated by Lafarge Tarmac Ltd.  The quarry is the conjoining of two old and separate quarries, Devonshire Quarry located behind Adgarley and Crown Quarry which extends laterally as well as of increasing depth behind Stainton.  Devonshire Quarry is now the location for a large concrete block manufacturing facility and a ready-mix concrete plant.  The strata which formerly covered the area of both quarries was the Urswick Limestone Formation, but the underlying strata of the Park Limestone Formation provides the commercial basis for today's quarrying operations in Crown Quarry.

Aerial view of quarry and village

Devonshire Quarry to the left and east, Crown Quarry to the right; with the village and village greens to the upper left.  The scale of these quarries is clear.
Photo by kind permission of Lafarge Tarmac Ltd.

No longer are quarries such as this able to secure their business by providing roadstone and railway ballast for nearby use.  The stone from Crown Quarry was exported to Sweden for several years where its high purity has been valued for such uses as toothpaste manufacture, paper making and for the manufacture of acetylene gas.  But the quarry competes in international markets and must constantly strive to find new customers and applications for its product.


Quarrymen in Devonshire Quarry.  The LMS rail wagon indicates that the photo was taken between 1923 & 1945
Agriculture, mining and quarrying once provided a high level of employment to the inhabitants of this village.  The last of the mining in the area was at nearby Woodbine Mine, known locally at Dicky Pink, which ceased operation in 1944.  Both agriculture and quarrying are significantly less labour intensive than in the times when the photograph of these quarrymen was taken, so employment in the immediate locality has declined substantially.  Notwithstanding this change, new housing has appeared, and given the absence of public transport to the village, this speaks to both the importance of private transport and a change in the demographic of such places towards an older age group.

Across Adgarley Green to Stainton

Looking across Adgarley Green in the direction of Stainton
As the former home for quarrymen, miners and agricultural workers, it is not surprising that its two former pubs were known as The Farmers Arms and The Miners.  Both these pubs closed some years ago but following significant refurbishment, 'the Farmers' reopened as what is now a very popular restaurant and drinking establishment known as The Stagger Inn.  Whilst this may well have been a success story for its owners, the resulting traffic congestion, caused by the absence of any dedicated car parking for the facility, has changed the character of the village somewhat as it is common to have vehicles lining the road which cross the village green.  The presence of so many cars can dominate the otherwise rural ambience of this peaceful village. 


Properties along the north side of the two joined village greens, Adgarley in the foreground and Stainton beyond
Stainton with Adgarley is unusual in modern times by still having three working farms as integral elements making up the village.  Two of these farms enjoy grazing rights on the village green and  each summer the green provides a crop of hay mown around the scattered limestone boulders.  Whilst farm traffic is not uncommon in the village, the commercial vehicles taking stone from the quarry predominantly miss the village by heading west to join the A590. 

Back to top