Ben Nevis stone to be lowered to bottom of Rubislaw Quarry

A stone from Scotland’s highest mountain will be placed at the country’s lowest point – the bottom of Aberdeen’s Rubislaw Quarry – as part of an intriguing new art project.

Artist Henry Castle is forging a lasting connection between Ben Nevis and the 500ft deep hole in the city’s west end.

Mr Castle previously scaled the mountain, at Fort William, with a slab of granite from the quarry in tow and left it among ruins at its 4,409ft peak.

The award-winning sculptor is poised to complete his project on Thursday, by lowering a stone from the mountain to the depths of Rubislaw Quarry.

Mr Castle’s father is from Aberdeen, and he says the “unique” scheme will cast new light on its history and the rock, which is synonymous with the city.

Rubislaw Quarry was opened in 1740, and an estimated six million tonnes of granite were excavated from it between the late 1770s and its closure in 1971.

It was purchased by oil consultant, Sandy Whyte, and former construction boss, Hugh Black, in 2010 and the pair aim to create a heritage centre at the site.

Mr Black said: “Mr Castle approached us about a year ago about this, and we were happy to help establish this great connection between the quarry and Ben Nevis.

“It hasn’t come without its challenges though.

“Originally, the idea was to simply drop the stone from a boat, but we felt the need to do something a little bit different.”

The stone will be attached to a subsea flotation buoy and gradually lowered to the bottom of the pit.

The buoy will give a GPS reading so that its exact location will be known, and a camera will record footage of the descent.

Once the operation has been completed, the equipment will detach itself from the stone and return to the surface.

Mr Black and Mr Castle met at the quarry yesterday to plan the procedure.

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