2: Foggintor Quarry

Foggintor Quarry is a sister quarry to Swelltor [ see previous blog post ] . The meaning of Foggintor is unclear but it seems unlikely it would not refer to the dreadful fogs that descend on Dartmoor even in the height of summer. So beware! [1]

Foggintor seems to have been opened in the late 18thC, see the amazingly informative Legendary Dartmoor website! [2], and while it seems likely that it’s granite was used for Victoria Embankment, along with other Dartmoor granites, it was definitely used for Nelson’s Column, built between 1840 and 1843. [3] Variscan Coast said it was not used for the New London Bridge “… the owners, Johnson & Brice, did not win the contract for construction of the new London Bridge in 1823…” [7]

One of the reasons Nelson’s Column took so long to be built was an 8 months strike of stone masons in 1841/2, both in London AND, in solidarity, back on Dartmoor! The solidarity action led to shortages of stone in London, the work being done by strike breaking masons! [4]

Nelson’s Column under construction http://www.unionancestors.co.uk/352-2/

In an early piece of industrial skulldugery it seems that the Foggintor quarry owners in the 1840s passed off their granite for the superior Haytor granite when selling to builders! [2]

The quarry ceased production in 1906.

Legendary Dartmoor also states Foggintor was the setting for the 1931 Gainsborough “Hound of the Baskervilles!” [2]

Remains of what was a large collection of buildings including a chapel
Tramway stones, though old maps don’t mark these as tramways so they could have been removed from defunct tramways and used here on what is now a farm track.

Foggintor has a good reputation for wild swimming and so a quick reminder of the dangers of swimming in quarries, whether the cold below the surface or submerged machinery.

Finally the Variscan Coast website is fantastic for the geology of the granites of the South-West including Foggintor! [7]

Getting there: See previous post on Swelltor

[1] https://www.dartmoor.gov.uk/enjoy-dartmoor/planning-your-visit/safety-advice-for-outdoor-activities
[2] https://www.legendarydartmoor.co.uk/foggintor.htm
[3] https://www.victorianlondon.org/buildings/nelson.htm
[4] http://www.unionancestors.co.uk/352-2/
[5] https://wildwomanswimming.wordpress.com/2011/11/02/foggy-foggintor/
[6] https://swimminghappyinmyskin.com/tag/foggintor/
[7] https://variscancoast.co.uk/foggintor-quarry

One response to “2: Foggintor Quarry”

  1. […] Visit to Foggintor granite quarry in Devon – used for Nelson’s Column and more https://buildinglondon.blog/2021/08/04/foggintor-quarry/%5B3%5D Devon granite from 1830s London Bridge at Pickets Lock Sports/Leisure Centre […]


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