Flint is among the natural minerals that aremade of silicon and is mainly found in chalk bedrock.
The mineral can be seenin the chalk cliffs of South Downs within England. The raw state of thismineral is a hard black rock that develops in linear nodules within chalk. Itis believed that the flint deposits originate from marine sponges and planktonsthat are rich in silica commonly termed as radiolarians and diatoms. Afterdeath, the planktons with calcium-rich skeletons are rained down onto theseabed, creating a white ooze of sediments and are later on followed by thesilica-rich materials as well as the marine sponges.
”After some time, thesilica formed into different pockets of ooze within the ooze, hardening anddehydrating into quartz crystals forming the flint.” (Cheddleton Flint Mill, Transport) For manydecades, Flint has been used in Roman times for purposes of construction,tools, weaponry as well as roads. When compared to the contemporary knives,most of the prehistoric tools are known to be sharper, and it has been proventhat fossils can be preserved using flint.
This explains flint’s property ofstrength as well as how it maintains a resonance difficult to fade away ordestroy. Flint has numerous properties which include: • Having a cryptocrystalline structure (smallcrystals that are not visible under a microscope)• Fractures same as those of glass when hithard• Being hard as Diamond• Having a razor shape edge• Ability to weather on the ground thusturning white, glossy or brown After extraction from chalk cliffs located insouth and northeast of England as well as Normandy in France, the mineral isbelieved to have moved by ship to different destinations such as the ports ofHull and Liverpool. The sailing ships might have introduced flint and clay toRuncorn within river Mersey. The two minerals would then be loaded into canalnarrow boats at Runcorn to be transported to the potteries through the Trentand Mersey canal. One of the major benefits of this pathway was that it allowedthe transport of raw materials to stoke as well as end products wares fromstoke. Back in 1776 at Westminster, abill was approved for stoke to construct a canal system which later came to bethe Trent and Mersey canal as well as Caldon Canal its sibling.
James Brindleywas charged with the role of designing and constructing the canal which tookeleven years to be completed and which helped in connecting manufacturers toexports as far as the United States of America. The six towns were thereforeconnected, with a factory being built and well situated to allow direct accessto one of the two canals. Through historical maps, this transport method canalso be seen within other smaller additions off the major waterways such as theBurslem canal, (a stretch of the main Trent and Mersey which rounds up with ahuge Wharf that has multiple fingers facing the gathering factories), (SEEMAP). According to different research works, “most of the potteries wereconstructed along the canal with aims of minimizing handling to a minimum”(Cheddleton Flint Mill, Transport). The arrangements are evident in mybuildings because there are constructions in most of the canal side elevation,effectively making use of the waterways.