Sand and gravel quarries are usually much shorter-term, shallower
and worked and restored in progressive phases. Once the topsoil
has been removed, the aggregate is dug from the ground and taken
to a processing plant where the clay and silt is removed and the
sand and gravel is separated into different grades. Crushed rock
or sand and gravel are mixed with cement to make ready-mixed concrete,
and with bitumen to make asphalt for the surfaces of our roads.
Some of the quarries listed here have concrete or asphalt plants
On a typical visit to a working quarry, children will be given
safety gear and taken on a tour by the quarry manager, who explains
how the quarrying process works. Occasionally, rock quarries may
be able to arrange for a blast to take place, which is sure to live
in the memory of visiting children!
Restored quarries often afford opportunities to look into ecosystems
and biodiversity in detail. A trip to a restored quarry can particularly
bring to life the teaching units held on this website.
Contact details for each site are listed, and the MPA can
support you on your trip if needed.
Contact the communications team on 020 7963 8000 or email us at