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EFC Centre at Wat Tyler Country ParkWe are closed due to the Covid-19 situation, but we are otherwise normally open to the public at our centre at Wat Tyler Country Park every Saturday, Sunday and bank holiday 11am-4pm, check. We are also normally open on Wednesdays 10am-4pm.

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Beaumont Quay Limekiln, BEAUMONT, Tendring District, TM19022402, Potential Local Geological Site

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Site name: Beaumont Quay Limekiln

Grid reference: TM 1902 2402

Brief description of site:

The only remaining limekiln in Essex. Linked to the chalk quarrying industry. Beaumont Quay is also of interest as it is constructed from stones originally taken from London Bridge.

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Details

The circular brick limekiln at Beaumont Quay is the only complete limekiln surviving in Essex. The quay was built in 1832 but the limekiln was almost certainly added later, probably in 1869-70. It was disused by the early 1920s. Limekilns were usually built in chalk quarries to be close to the raw material used for making lime but in coastal areas more permanent and substantial kilns were built in harbours and wharfs where chalk and coal for the kiln could be brought in by sea.

Beaumont Quay has another feature of geological interest. The stones forming the edge of the quay are from the old London Bridge, constructed between 1176 and 1209, which was the first London Bridge to be built of stone. The bridge stood for over 600 years, finally being demolished in 1831, with some of the stone coming here to Beaumont Quay. The stone is called Merstham Stone, better known as ‘Firestone’, a fine-grained sandstone of Cretaceous age from the Upper Greensand of Merstham in Surrey. The bridge that replaced it in 1831 was built of Dartmoor granite and it was this bridge that was sold and reconstructed in Arizona in 1967 when it was replaced with the present London Bridge.

Essex County Council owns the limekiln, The limekiln and quay are a scheduled ancient monument. The limekiln is a listed building. The following is an extract from the Historic England website:

At Beaumont Quay the remains of the 19th century quay are combined with those of a largely intact lime kiln as well as a store building. The lime kiln is also a rare example of an East Anglian form, surviving in very good condition, and is the only one of its type (mixed feed) to survive in this area.

https://historicengland.org.uk/listing/the-list/list-entry/1020688



Beaumont Quay limekiln – the only surviving limekiln in Essex. Photo © G.Lucy. (P8014845)

 

Stones at Beaumont Quay reused from London Bridge
Stones at Beaumont Quay reused from London Bridge

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Reference: Watson 1911 (p. 195), Williams 1989

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