Kilkenny Limestone quarry

Kilkenny Limestone

Ireland’s Leading Limestone Quarrying & Processing Operation

Kilkenny Limestone Products

Kilkenny Limestone is a compact dark limestone. This material has been used for centuries for indoor and outdoor applications. You can use this natural stone for kitchen worktops, flooring, interior finishes and so on. This bluestone stands its ground indoors and outdoors.

Kilkenny Indoor tiles

Used for centuries in prestigious buildings throughout Ireland and Europe, Irish Blue Limestone tiles add an air of authenticity and timelessness to indoor environments. Kilkenny Limestone’s Original Range affords clients the freedom to custom-design their own authentic blue limestone floor and wall tiles. Cut specifically to order and precision-finished in any of 15 individual textures, these traditional cut tiles promise an original and natural interior feature.


Get inspired

A finish for every purpose

Various shade and finish combinations tease the stone into its many expressions of colour and texture. By offering 15 finishes, we always find the finish that best suits the material, your tastes, and the style of your home.

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Our quarries

Our quarries produce the well-known Kilkenny Limestone in two varieties: classic blue & fossil. They can be used for internal and external applications and are supplied to prestigious projects across Ireland, UK, Europe and worldwide.

Old Leighlin
Holdensrath
Kellymount
Kilkenny production process: transport

From quarry to finished product

From 3 million cubic metres of blue limestone reserves at Old Leighlin, Kellymount and Holdensrath, Kilkenny Limestone annually quarries c. 75.000m³ for processing into limestone slab and its full suite of finished stone products.


Kilkenny Limestone Quarries is rooted in a fine tradition of blue limestone production. Inspired by centuries of master-craftsmen before us, we are honoured to be the principal suppliers of the stone to modern day architectural and design projects from rural Ireland to downtown Manhattan. Production of our entire blue limestone range is carried out at our Irish quarry facilities in Carlow and Kilkenny under a rigorous quality system.

1930

history-image-1930

First quarry

The venture which led to Kilkenny Limestone began when John Sisk & Son acquired an Irish Blue Limestone quarry near Ballinasloe, Co. Galway in response to the growing demand for native Irish stone in the building projects of the new Irish state.

1950

Top view of the Old Leighlin Kilkenny Limestone Quarry

Old Leighlin

As the resources at the Ballinasloe site were utilized in the construction of Galway Cathedral, the company sought to expand operations with two new quarries at Ballybrew, Co. Wicklow and Old Leighlin, Co. Carlow.

1970

The use of more practical and functional applications by Kilkenny Limestone

Cladding & paving

The 1970s marked a period of change in how Kilkenny Limestone was manufactured and marketed, with a move away from solely ornamental uses for the stone. We began to innovate more practical and functional applications, such as cladding and paving. A good example of work from this period is the Met Eireann Headquarters at Glasnevin, Dublin with its angled façade of blue limestone cladding.

1980

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New export channels

During an era of economic difficulties for Ireland, Kilkenny Limestone began to forge new export channels for blue limestone products, particularly in Europe, developing a strong reputation within the Dutch and Belgian markets. The operation of a Belgian subsidiary enabled us to strengthen our foothold in Europe, expanding our reach across a number of countries.

1990

London City Hall

Iconic buildings

Over the last two decades, Kikenny Limestone has made continued investment, not just into the Irish market, but also within the UK. These significant strides received recent recognition in being selected as suppliers to Norman Foster’s illustrious flagship project on the River Thames – the MoreLondon Development. Stone Developments are also proud partners in the construction of many of modern Ireland’s most iconic buildings, including Department of Finance, Dublin, Lewis Glucksman Gallery, Cork and Offaly County Council Civic Offices.

2011

Kilkenny Limestone Brachot Family Member

Brachot Family Member

In 2011, the three quarries of Old Leighlin Co. Carlow, Kellymount and Holdensrath Co. Kilkenny were brought under one name, Kilkenny Limestone, as part of the Belgian Brachot Group.

Kilkenny blocks

The Story of Irish Blue Limestone

The Story of Kilkenny Limestone and formation of the Irish Blue Limestone in general, begins long ago before the Ages of Man or the Age of the Dinosaurs, during what is called the ‘Age of the Crinoids’, some 340 million years ago.

In the warm, shallow, tropical seas that once extended across much of what we know today as north-east Europe, sea life and calcium carbonate crystallised over time to form the sedimentary rock with its characteristic coral strata, crinoid, brachiopod and gastropod fossils. There it remained for hundreds of millions of years until Europe’s settlers began to conceive of building robust and timeless structures. The story of this material tracks the development of civilisation in Ireland. Blue limestone was used by the Neolithic people to construct monuments in a time before the Pyramids of Egypt were first imagined.

As society developed, the stone was utilized for the more sophisticated means of carving and is seen in Ireland’s famed Celtic crosses. A technically superior building material, the stone’s elegant and timeless qualities have been consistently celebrated in Irish architecture from ancient monasteries and abbeys to the castles and houses of chieftains and lords. This is a tradition that continues through to the modern day. Fully appreciating the rarity and uniqueness of this stone, Kilkenny Limestone has dedicated itself to its correct and appropriate usage in contributing to the great buildings and landscapes of our modern age.

Quality assured 

Kilkenny Limestone maintains a quality approach to their work. The company subjects all processes to rigourous and regular quality control checks, from inspection of raw materials, through monitoring of the entire manufacturing process to final quality approval and guarantee of end products.

Kilkenny Limestone’s system of CE marking highlights the performance standards expected from our products. The products are produced from ATGcertified materials. The ISO: 9001 quality system implemented by Kilkenny Limestone is independently audited and verified. The low-waste production methods used complement the naturally low embedded carbon that makes Irish Blue Limestone an exceptionally environmentally friendly material.

ATG Certified Logo which indicates that this product has been technically approved
NSAI certified symbols which indicate this product has been approved for it's quality and environmental impact
The CE marking that shows that this product complies with the legal requirements

Extracted with respect for nature 

Kilkenny Limestone is always extracted with respect for the environment in line with the demands of sustainable entrepreneurship and has obtained the ISO 14001: 2015 certificate for Environmental Management System. It offers a systematic framework to manage the immediate and long term environmental impacts of an organisation’s products, services and processes.

Moreover, Kilkenny Limestone actively invest in the deployment of a ZeroWaste program. Driven by the belief that Irish Blue Limestone is a precious resource that should be used wisely and never wasted, great strides are being made in the eventual elimination of waste products from all manufacturing processes.

An employee working at Kilkenny Limestone

Get in touch

We are available at any time to answer distribution queries, provide information on our full suite of products, or deliver advice on caring for Irish Blue Limestone.

Download the Kilkenny Limestone brochure