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Chamberlains Barns Pit Leighton Buzzard

The entrance to Chamberlains Barns pit March 2009
The entrance to Chamberlains Barns pit March 2009

The sand quarry at Chamberlains Barns has been excavated partly on the site of an early Anglo-Saxon cemetery. This dated from the late 6th to early 7th centuries.

In the May 1934 edition of Cement, Lime & Gravel magazine a feature on J. Arnold & Sons had this to say: "At Chamberlain's Barn the town water is used for washing, but the use of this has been partially eliminated by sinking a well and installing a small pump and petrol engine. This quarry is also connected with the light railway, but it has excellent facilities for dealing with road transport, the washed sand being quickly hauled from the washing plant to the large gantry in the front of the quarry. Three grades of building sand are regularly supplied from the above unwashed, washed and a special variety".

"It is one of the largest workings hereabouts. Although it has been open a considerable number of years, it is perhaps not quite so old as the skeletons exhumed from the shallow overburden on top; the skeletons are believed to date back to the second half of the sixth century A.D. and so are of Saxon or Anglian origin".