The Forsby-Köping limestone cableway, Sweden

The Forsby-Köping limestone cableway, Sweden

The Forsby-Köping limestone cableway is a rather strange sight in the remote Swedish countryside. Believe it or not, this used to be the longest cableway in the world. Long since decommissioned, the remnants of  this industrial transportation system scar the landscape with its abandoned decay.

Nonetheless, the history of this particular cableway is rather interesting. It was constructed in 1939, in order to carry limestone from Sweden’s Forsby quarry to the cement factory in Köpinga. A 26-mile-long route.

During the 1940s it held that accolade of the longest constructed cableway, however it was soon superseded by a few other, similar industrial transports.

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While others came and went mind you, the Forsby-Köping line carried on working right up until the 1990s. After 56 years and a total of 25 million tons of transported limestone, the record-setting cableway finally ceased working in 1997.

Attempts have been made to preserve it as a piece of industrial heritage, but the owner, Nordkalk, was unable to find a suitable caretaker. Because of this, many parts of the cableway have been taken down and sold as scrap.

However, enough of the cableway remains to give sightseers an idea of its once immense scale, (and importance to the industry it served). Across the fields outside of the municipality of Arboga some remains still stand, cutting through the fields. An eerie relic of the area’s industrial past.

(Image Credits: Arvid Rudling/Flickr)

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