1874 saw the establishment of a quarry for the manufacture of ballast by the Great Western Railway (which had recently acquired the East Somerset Railway) on Dulcote Hill, alongside the company’s Wells-Witham line. The land on which the quarry stood was owned by Charles Clement Tudway of Wells, who was paid a royalty of 2d. per ton, the usual amount for broken stone in that period. In the same year the Wells-Witham line, together with the Frome-Radstock, was converted to standard gauge, thereby removing a major obstacle to the movement of stone by rail.
Initially, the quarry had a single crusher driven by a portable steam engine, but by 1904 a second crusher had been added. By then the quarry was managed for the GWR by the William Bailey of Croscombe, son of George Bailey who had moved from Holt in Wiltshire to work in the quarry around 1880. The quarry was one of the first in the Mendips to introduce mechanical drilling, a tripod mounted steam drill being in use by around 1910. In 1912 the steam engine used to drive the crushers was replaced with a suction gas engine, the changeover being captured in photographs taken by Bailey, who recorded many aspects of the life of the quarry in this period. In 1922 the quarry was employing 38 men, but in 1925 was not worked, and in the early 1930s it was officially closed and the plant removed. The workings were later incorporated into those of the neighbouring Dulcote Hill Quarry of Foster Yeoman Ltd to the west.
NGR: 357300 - 144000
Lat : 51.1936151038
Long : -2.6124379667