Irish slate designated an official Heritage Stone

Copyright Valentia Slate
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Valentia Slate, a natural stone derived from Valentia Island in the Republic of Ireland has been officially recognised as a heritage stone.

Awarded the status of ‘International Union of Geological Sciences Heritage Stone’, it has been used internationally, including on the floors and roofs of the House of Commons in London and Trinity College, Dublin. The status is only given to stone that has a history of significant use and which is still available for conservation purposes today.

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Globally, only 55 stones are recognised by this designation and it was achieved through research by the Trinity research group Stonebuilt Ireland based in Geology in the School of Natural Sciences and led by Professor Patrick Wyse Jackson and Dr Louise Caulfield, in collaboration with colleagues at Valentia Slate Company Ltd and Carrig Conservation Consultants. Connemara Marble is the only other stone in Ireland with this recognition.

The slate which can be used in construction and domestic settings is extracted underground on Valentia Island in the same facility that was opened by Peter Fitzgerald, the Knight of Kerry, in 1816. The company operates a zero-waste policy in extracting slate for a wide variety of purposes including flooring, roofing slates, worktops and headstones.