Example of Clipsham stone

Clipsham Stone

Clipsham stone is a Lincolnshire oolite Limestone described as coarse, shelly, it is widely accepted as one of, if not the hardest Jurassic limestone in the country.

The colouration is brown to pale cream and also light grey and occasionally blue.

Notable historic projects include Canterbury Cathedral, The Houses of Parliament, York Minster and Trinity College, Cambridge Kings College and Cambridge.

"Clipsham may be trusted: there is no stone but Portland in which I have more faith" - Sir Thomas Graham Jackson 1893.  One of the most distinguished architects of his generation, the man who remodeled Victorian Oxford.

Clipsham stone was not the original stone for the Houses of Parliament but has been used extensively in it’s restoration.

The Original Quarries (Dr Jennifer Alexander).

Location Date Commenced
Big Pits Clipsham 11th Century
Edenham 12th Century
Corby Glen 14th Century
Holbeck Greetham 15th Century
Holywell 14th Century
Burton Goggles 17th Century
Castle Bytham 20th Century

Seven quarries produced Clipsham Stone across Rutland and Lincolnshire. The Clipsham formation is described as lying broadly from Greetham to Careby and from Castle Bytham to Pickworth.


In the medieval period the stone would have been transported by ox cart or horse and cart.

Much of the stone was carried a few miles to the east and loaded onto barges on the West Glen River. These cargos would eventually be re-loaded on to larger vessels which would head to The Wash by navigating the River Welland.

In 1852 the railway came to Little Bytham with the Great Northern Railway. A sidings and shunting facilities along with a 5 tonne crane made easy work of the Clipsham Blocks.

The disused Little Bytham sidings along with its engine shed would become The Goldholme Stone Masonry yard during the 1990s.

In the early 1900s the movement of block gave way to road haulage.

Today Clipsham Stone is extracted at Big Pits in Clipsham and Hooby Lane quarry near Greetham which you can see on Google Maps.

There are is a site of special scientific interest nearby at Clipsham Old Quarry and Pickworth Great Wood.


Map of Clipsham Stone Quarries by Dr Jennifer Alexander


Map of Clipsham Stone Quarries


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