S.A. des Ardoisières Saint Marton
THE ABANDONED FACTORY IN BELGIUM
‘Ardoisières Saint Marton’ was an abandoned slate quarry in Martelange, a village in Belgium close to the border with Luxemburg. The site was abandoned in 1995 and eventually demolished in 2021.
The Martelange slate deposit has been known since the 16th century, was one of the eight active Belgian slate mines. The 170-meter deep quarry produced more than a million slates a year. The slates from this mine were dark gray, homogeneous and from excellent quality.
Open-pit mining went underground in 1918 when a 40-meter shaft was dug. While exploring, we found an entrance to the underground mine but didn’t find it safe enough to explore.
The First World War did the local industry no good, but from 1919, production resumed and was exported en masse to Germany. In 1941, the production record was reached with 13.5 million slates. However, the Second World War reduced production by half.
It seems the building isn’t completely abandoned during my visit, the offices were locked, and you could see there was recent activity there. I visited ‘S.A. des Ardoisières Saint Marton’ in 2006 and 2020. Check this link for more abandoned factories.