Horton is a large quarry situated in the Yorkshire Dales National Park covering almost 80 hectares, and is surrounded by SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) and SAC (Special Areas of Conservation) areas which include limestone pavement.
The quarry extracts carboniferous limestone to produce a variety of aggregates for use in our own ready-mixed concrete plants in the north west of England and to make concrete products.
The limestone bed is over 90 metres thick and comprises both black and white limestone which are worked separately to produce products with a consistent colour. The white limestone produces very clean white aggregates much prized for their colour. The white limestone is also used for making powdered lime.
The quarry has over 40 million tonnes of reserves with planning permission. High PSV gritstone underlies the limestone and Hanson hopes to work this material in the near future to produce high quality aggregates for use in asphalt and road surfacing. When extraction is complete, the site will be restored to calcareous grassland.
Within the boundary of the site habitats include calcareous grassland, acid flushes, springs, heathland, limestone pavement (both undisturbed and disturbed), bracken and stands of juniper. Species recorded on the site include Skylark (Alauda arvensis); butterflies including Northern Brown Argus, High brown and Pearl Bordered Fritillary. Much of the calcareous grassland is dominated by Blue Moor Grass and there are stands of Juniper.
Ongoing nature projects:
Hanson is providing land and grants for a juniper regeneration project.