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STORETON QUARRIES, Mount Road, Higher Bebington

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Reference ZST
Covering dates 1874 - 1959
Held by Wirral Archives Service
Extent 9 SUB-FONDS
Archival history Accn. 1061
Source of acquisition These records were purchased from Mr. E. Stapelton, in December 1983. They had been rescued from the quarry offices after closure.
Creators Storeton Quarries, Higher Bebington

Administrative history:
The outcrops of white or cream-coloured "Keuper" sandstone which form the Storeton ridge have been quarried for more than 1,700 years.
Buildings constructed of this stone include the Liverpool Custom House (1828), the houses in Hamilton Square, Birkenhead (1830-40), the original Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool (1845), the Birkenhead Town Hall (1883), and the nave and tower of St. Andrews Church, Bebington.
However, the present records relate only to the period when the quarries were worked by the Wells family (of Bootle): Charles Wells (between 1905-16), his executors (between 1917-20), and Frank Wells (between 1922-59). After the auction of the estates of Sir Thomas Brocklebank in 1911 see ZST/12 the quarries were owned by Lord Leverhulme.
There were two quarries. The older "North Quarry" was abandoned during the 1920's and filled in (during 1926-31) with waste from the Mersey Tunnel excavations. Working was then concentrated on the other (east) side of Mount Road, at the "Higher Bebington White Freestone Quarry".
This was gradually run down; it closed in 1959, and has also since been filled in.
For a period during the 1940's and 1950's timber was cut and sold at the quarry.


Time books  ZST/1  1905-39

27 vols.

Time worked and wages earned.

Report books  [no ref. or date]

Inspections of plant, machinery, and appliances (daily)  ZST/2  1905-26

11 vols.

Required under the Quarries Act 1894.

Inspections of bridges (daily)  ZST/3  1926-44

13 vols.

Required under the Quarries Act 1894 and the Quarries General Regulations 1938.

Inspections of the external parts of winding machinery, guides, headgear, ropes, chains, cages, etc. (daily)  ZST/4  1913-14

1 vol.

Required under the Coal Mines Act 1911

Plans  [no ref. or date]

Survey plans of the quarry, made by William Griffiths, architect and surveyor, 5 Hamilton Square, Birkenhead; scale: 30ft = ins  ZST/5  1905-20

[no title]  ZST/5/1  Apr. 1905

[no title]  ZST/5/2  Feb. 1920 (updated from Jan. 1911 and Jul. 1912)

Insurance reports  [no ref. or date]

Reports on inspections of Steam boilers carried out by the Vulcan Boiler and General Insurance Co. Ltd., King Street, Manchester  ZST/6  1906-59

These reports were required under the various Factory and Work-shop Acts from 1901 onwards, and are written on standard forms. They were 'filed' in envelopes addressed to the quarry proprietor, Frank Wells (at Wadham Chambers, 90 Wadham Road, Bootle), but have now been removed from these and arranged in chronological order, together with covering letters, etc. Five sample envelopes have been retained. There are gaps in the series, with no surviving reports for the following years: 1941, 1945, 1948, and 1952 to 1958.

Papers relating to orders, customers accounts, etc  ZST/7  1905-47

[no title]  ZST/7/1  1905

Rough note headed "Higher Bebington Quarry, Summary from date of taking possession, May 22nd 1905, to September 30th 1905" - apparently details of stone and sand supplied, under customers name.

[no title]  ZST/7/2  c.early 1900s

Undated note of stone and sand supplied to various customers, including Lever Brothers Ltd. 2 sheets; on the reverse of one sheet are some detailed notes on the condition of the quarry, orders received, etc. - possibly a draft of a report.

[no title]  ZST/7/3  1907

Memo containing details of wagon and cart loads taken to TRANMERE BAY, Oct. - Dec. 1907, with name of carter.

[no title]  ZST/7/4  Apr. - Aug. 1925

Letters from John Clarke and Son, architects and civil engineers, Castle Street, Liverpool, re stone to be supplied to F.A. Frost and Sons Ltd., flour millers, (of the Steam Mills, Chester) at their mill at ELLESMERE PORT.

[no title]  ZST/7/5  Nov. 1926 - Jan. 1927

Orders from Walter Davis, sculptor and masonry contractor, 20 Grenfell Road, HEREFORD.

[no title]  ZST/7/6  Oct. 1926 - Mar. 1927

Orders from S.J. Milsom, of the Stone Yard, Maudland Siding, PRESTON; with lists of stones supplied, priced and numbered according to dimensions, etc.

[no title]  ZST/7/7  Apr. 1927

Order from Thomas Little, stone mason and contractor, 55 Urmston Road, LISCARD.

[no title]  ZST/7/8  1933

Order with detailed specifications for stone required by Mrs. F. Ebbs, builder and contractor, Woolton Road, WAVERTREE, Liverpool for a house in Allerton Road, Liverpool

[no title]  ZST/7/9  Apr. 1948

Enquiry for quotation from Tarmac Ltd., Victoria Street, West-minster.

[no title]  ZST/7/10  Undated

House plan for "Yelverton", Thornton Road, BEBINGTON.

Papers relating to employees  ZST/8  1908-45

Timesheet. W/E 24 Apr. 1908  ZST/8/1  24 Apr 1908

[no title]  ZST/8/2  1914

"Statement of compensation paid to J. Davies owing to the result of an accident which happened on the 10th August 1914."

Form of Notice of Accident or Dangerous Occurence (to be sent to H.M. Inspector of Mines)  ZST/8/3  1912, 1921

(a) blank form; (b) completed form re Oswald Douglas Campbell, blacksmith and general labourer, of 65 Village Road, Bebington, who fell down a hole at the quarry, fracturing his skull, on 24 Oct. 1921; and, (c) completed form re John Fisher, crane driver, of 1 Mill Terrace, Hr. Bebington, who was injured by a falling block of stone on 27 Jan. 1912.

Notices displayed at the quarry  ZST/8/4  1938-1940

(a) Special Rules under the "Quarries Act 1894" (relating to safety, use of explosives, means of access, etc.) (n.d.)
(b) Summary of the "Workmen's Compensation Act 1925" (relating to notice of accidents and making of claims). (2 copies - Jul. 1938 and Apr. 1939)
(c) Abstract of the "Quarries General Regulations 1938". Sep. 1940.
(d) Abstract of the "Quarries Act 1894" (as amended by the "Factories Act 1937"). Sep. 1940.
(All published by H.M. Stationery Office)

[no title]  ZST/8/5  1935, 1939

Circulars from the National Federation of Freestone Quarry Owners relating to Accidents (Jun. 1935) and a Workmen's Compensation Insurance Scheme (May 1939).

[no title]  ZST/8/6  1930s

Sample copies of "Worker's Registers" kept under the Workmen's Compensation Acts 1925 to 1930 (silicosis treatment and compensation schemes in the sandstone industry.) 5 registers, 1930's; each relating to an individual employee.

[no title]  ZST/8/7  1926, 1932-1933

"Birkenhead (General) Hospital. 1d in the £1 Fund". Sheets showing workers contributions to the scheme. July. 1932-Sep. 1933. Also, receipt £1/19/- for "Employees Fund" Jul. 1926.

[no title]  ZST/8/8  1936-1945

Papers relating to the medical insurance schemes provided by the Merseyside Hospitals Council, Inc.; incl. receipts for contributions made by Quarry employees (1936-41), and a letter giving details of convalescent homes (Sep. 1945)

[no title]  ZST/8/9  Sep. - Oct. 1924

Letters and receipts from Jackson's Agency, of James Street, Liverpool, re the homeward passage by steamship (Montreal to Liverpool) of John H. Davies (an employee? - the fare was paid by Wells).

Accounts, circulars, etc., from service suppliers  ZST/9  1912-55

West Cheshire Water Co.  ZST/9/1  Apr. 1912 and Jan. 1914

2 Accounts.

C. Ollerhead. Handwritten account and receipt for haulage  ZST/9/2  1943-44

Buckton Ltd., civil engineering contractors, Manchester. Enquiry concerning the removal of "overburden" at the quarry.  ZST/9/3  Feb. 1949

Charles Brand and Sons. Ltd., civil engineering contractors, Birkenhead Power Station, Port Causeway, ROCK FERRY. Notices that the works would be shut during Easter, Whit, and August bank holidays  ZST/9/4  1949

W.T. Nicholson and Clipper Co., manufacturers, Blackheath, BIRMINGHAM. Circular re supply of "elevator bolts"  ZST/9/5  June 1955

James H. Williams, machinery and general merchant, CARDIFF. Circular re equipment sale  ZST/9/6  No date

Related information: See also ZST/18, below, for trade catalogues, etc.

[no title]  ZST/10  c.1920's-40's

Large number of business cards - mainly those of local haulage contractors, builders, engineering equipment suppliers, etc. No dates, probably 1920's - 1940's.

Order books, receipt books, etc  ZST/11  1914 - 53

Order book (customers)  ZST/11/1  Oct. 1924 - Apr. 1925

Gives details of customers name, quantities supplied, and costs.

Four note books containing rough details of orders accepted, stone supplied, etc.  ZST/11/2-5  c.1924 - Feb. 1945

Three Desk diaries containing information about consignments of logs (timber) received and sold, together with brief details of events at the quarry.  ZST/11/6-8  Jul. 1945 - Oct. 1953

Order book (supplies of coal for boilers, etc.)  ZST/11/9  Aug. 1914 - May 1945

London and North Western Railway Ltd. order book for the carriage of consignments by railway.  ZST/11/10  Oct. 1926 - Dec. 1948

Miscellaneous items connected with Storeton Quarry and the Wells family  [no ref. or date]

[no title]  ZST/12  1911

Sale catalogue: "A valuable freehold agricultural and building estate lying in the parishes of TRANMERE, HIGHER BEBINGTON, LOWER BEBINGTON, POULTON-CUM-SPITAL, and the entire parish of STORETON, together with the well-known Storeton Quarries, with the private railway to BROMBOROUGH POOL, Wharf, Sidings, etc." To be sold by Boult, Son, and Maples, at the Woodside Hotel, Birkenhead, on the 28 and 29 Sep. 1911. (The estate was the property of the trustees under the will of Sir Thomas Brocklebank. 3 plans of the estate are enclosed: (a) an overall plan, now cut into two halves, drawn at a scale of approx. 12" = 1 mile; (b) an enlarged plan of property adjoining Storeton Station; and (c) an enlarged plan of Little Storeton.)

Two deeds  ZST/13  nd

[no title]  ZST/13/1  1899

Lease of the "Holt Lane Quarry," WHISTON, Co. Lancaster, from James Hindle, quarry master, of 14 Pilkington Road, Southport, to Charles Wells, quarry master, of "Red Stone Quarries, BOOTLE. 1899. (Corrected copy. The lease covered all plant and equipment as well as the quarry itself.)

[no title]  ZST/13/2  1904

Acknowledgement of right to production of documents; William Oswald Kellett to Messrs. John Wells and Charles Wells.
Mar. 1904. (Concerns land conveyed to Kellett in LATHAM, Co. Lancaster.)

Steam Boiler Insurance policy made out in the name of Frank H. Harrison of 33 Holborn Hill, Higher Tranmere, by the Ocean Accident and Guarantee Corporation Ltd., Moorgate, London  ZST/14  May 1931

Photographs  ZST/15  Early 1900's

View of the quarry face (Storeton Quarry). Mounted photograph.  ZST/15/1  Undated. c.1910

Poor condition

"General view of the Storeton Quarries"  ZST/15/2  Undated, c.1910

Cutting from a magazine; very poor condition

"Bebington Quarries. Surface View. August 13th 1910."  ZST/15/3  1910

Postcard. Shows part of the rock-face and a crane in the foreground, and quarry buildings in the background.

"Hr. Bebington Quarries. Pay Time. August 13 1910."  ZST/15/4  1910

Postcard. Shows quarry employees waiting by the quarry office;? Charles Wells standing in the doorway of the office.

Photographs showing Cheirotherium footprints visible in stone slabs.  ZST/15/5-7  c. early 1900s

1 postcard, and 2 mounted photographs.

"The discovery in 1838 of the footprints of the Cheirotherium, a long extinct animal, in the Higher Bebington Quarries brought them international fame. The "footprint bed" is a thin stratum of marl about 60 feet below the surface, immediately underlying the sandstone.... slabs containing the prints were carefully cut out and eagerly acquired by museums all over the world." Norman Ellison, The Wirral Peninsula", 1955

Small photocopied booklet  ZST/15/8  1906

Containing geological diagrams of the quarry area, evidently connected with a (?society) visit to Storeton (by kind permission of Charles Wells, Esq") on 5 May 1906.

Publications, trade catalogues, etc., found in the quarry office  [no ref. or date]

Local telephone directories  ZST/16  1905-43

20 vols.

Administrative history:
Vols. 1 - 10 were issued by the National Telephone Company; the remainder by the Post Office. The Post Office took over the National Telephone Co.'s services and assets on 1 January 1912.

North Western Section  ZST/16/1  1905-06

North Western Section. Supplement  ZST/16/2  Jan. 1906

North Western Section. Supplement  ZST/16/3  Jan. 1907

North Western Section.  ZST/16/4  1906-07

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/5  Jul. 1907

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/6  Jan. 1908

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/7  Jul. 1908

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/8  Jan. 1909

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/9  Jul. 1910

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/10  Jan. 1911

Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/11  Jan. 1912


Liverpool and Birkenhead District.  ZST/16/12  Jul. 1912

Liverpool and District.  ZST/16/13  Jan. 1913

Liverpool and District.  ZST/16/14  Oct. 1918

Liverpool and South West Lancashire.  ZST/16/15  Dec. 1935

Liverpool and South West Lancashire. (Classified)  ZST/16/16  Dec. 1937

Liverpool and South West Lancashire. (Classified)  ZST/16/17  Jun. 1938

Liverpool Area  ZST/16/18  Jul. 1940

Liverpool Area  ZST/16/19  Jul. 1942

Liverpool Area  ZST/16/20  Apr. 1943

Local publications  ZST/17  1932-38

Liverpool Trade Protection Society (42 Castle Street). Monthly circular  ZST/17/1  Oct. 1933

The Liverpool, Birkenhead, and Wirral Districts Buildings and Allied Trades Employers Association. Yearbook  ZST/17/2  1935-36

Merseyside Hospitals Council. Annual reports for the years 1932, 1933, and 1938  ZST/17/3  1932-1938

3 vols.

Trade catalogues, etc  ZST/18  1874-1937

Walter Macfarlane's and Co  ZST/18/1  c.1874

(Glasgow). Ironfounders. Catalogue and price list of "Macfarlane's Castings", containing detailed illustrations of wrought-iron work.

Ingersoll-Rand Co. Ltd  ZST/18/2  1911 and 1912

2 Booklets.

(U.S.A., with London office.)
Manufacturers of rock drills, etc.

J.B. Treasure and Co  ZST/18/3  c.1913

(Liverpool). Catalogue and price list of guage glasses, lubricators, etc.

Blaw-Knox Ltd  ZST/18/4  c.1920's

(London). Leaflet on overhead "Steel storage bins" used for loading quarry wagons.

C.H. Johnson and Sons Ltd  ZST/18/5  1931

(Manchester) Leaflets advertising patent railway turntables and rock drills.

Petters Ltd  ZST/18/6  1931

(Yeovil). "The Petter Patent Atomic Heavy-Oil Engine" and electric generators. Catalogue

Hardy Patent Pick Co. Ltd  ZST/18/7  c. early 1930's

(Sheffield). "Air Hammer Rock Drills" catalogue

Hardypick Ltd  ZST/18/8  1937

(Sheffield) Tool catalogue.

Charles D. Phillips Ltd  ZST/18/9  Jan. 1930

(Newport, Mon.) Engineers and iron founders. Machinery register, (new and used equipment)

"Roads and Construction" (magazine)  ZST/18/10  May 1928 and Dec. 1929

Priestman Bros. Ltd  ZST/18/11  1937

The Priestman "Cub" excavator; brochure

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