Black Mountain Lime Industry Quiz – questions and answers

If you’re planning a trip up to the Black Mountain you may wish to take along these questions and answers so that you can quiz your friends! 


1. What is Tufa

2. What animals live in the kilns?

3. What is the only kiln we currently know the name of?

4. What happened to David Davies?

5. What is quicklime used for?

6. How many kilns are there on the Black Mountain?

7. Who was Herbert?

8. Name a kind of kiln found at Herbert’s Quarry?

9. Can you name another type of kiln found at the quarry?

10. What shape are butterworts?

11. Why do they like to grow at the quarry?

12. What is a spoil heap

13. What shape have the earlier clamp kilns left behind?

14. What were the Rebecca Riots?

15. Who worked at the quarries during the earlier phase?

16. Why cant the bats use the doors put in place to protect the kilns?


1. Tufa is a calcium carbonate deposit (CaCO3) also called Calcite. It is caused by water washing through the spoil heaps at the quarry, as the water reaches the surface the alkaline water reacts with Carbon dioxide from the air and the calcium hydroxide turns into solid calcium carbonate.

2. Bats live in the kilns at Herbert’s quarry.

3. ‘Seren’ is the only kiln we know the name of,  this is the large kiln next to the road and monument.  We do have a list of kiln names but do not know which kilns they belong too.

4. David Davies died aged 22 when his horse bolted and he fell under the wheel of his kart which was laden with lime.  We know this from the monument placed in his memory which can be seen at the roadside.

5. Lime was used as a soil improver or ‘manure’. Its alkaline pH neutralised acidic soils, enabling upland soils to be cultivated and increasing crop diversity and yields.

6. We don’t exactly know,  we have found remains of a large number of the ‘one use’ clamp kilns, added to the flare and draw kilns there could be hundreds.

7. David John Herbert was one of the last owners of the quarry.

8. There are three types, Clamp, Flare and Draw kilns.

9. As above

10. Butterworts are a star shaped insectivorous plant, they have light green sticky leaves to trap insects.

11. They like to grow at the quarry because of the wet and alkaline environment

12. A spoil heap is the waste from the kiln which was of no use.  This could include any pieces of limestone that didn’t burn properly or pieces that were too big or small to use.

13. Clamp kilns were earlier ‘single use’ kilns which used charcoal to burn the lime.  When the burn was complete the lime would be dug out leaving a horseshoe shape remaining.

14. The Rebecca Riots were a series of riots which occurred between 1839 and 1843 as farmers were charged tolls to transport their products (including lime) by road builders (Like we pay to cross the Severn Bridge) The tolls were so high the farms revolted in protest.  Angry farmers dressed as women and destroyed the toll gates.

15. The quarries were worked by local farmers who used the lime for their own land.  Later on the quarries became more commercial selling lime for a profit.

16. The gates put in place to protect the kiln to protect the kiln had vertical bars.  Once a bat has become familiar with an environment it finds it difficult to change to anything new, so horizontal bars would have been more bat friendly.


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