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Evaluation, Design, Delivery & Management of Earth & Water Resource Projects

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Quarry design Handbook

A Quarry Design Handbook, 2014 Edition.

Authored jointly by GWP Consultants LLP and David Jarvis Associates Ltd.

The Handbook is about the design of new quarries, quarry extensions or revised quarry working schemes. The primary objectives of good quarry design are the safe, efficient and profitable extraction of the maximum usable material from the available land whilst causing the minimum environmental disturbance and resulting in beneficial final restoration and land-uses.

The Handbook sets out to provide a source of reference and guidance to those involved in designing and operating quarries. In particular, it should assist them in preparing good quality mineral planning applications for new and extension sites, which also incorporate the requirements of the Quarries Regulations, 1999 and demonstrate effective mitigation of environmental impacts. It also aims to assist and inform those who scrutinise planning applications (whether in an official or a private capacity) in understanding more about the process and its outcomes. It is aimed at a wide readership including members of the public, quarry operators, Planning Authorities (members and officers), landowners, environmental and health and safety regulators and consultants.

In this way, the Handbook should assist in promoting common understanding of the process of quarry design and provide support to effective communication and negotiation between all relevant stakeholder groups. In order to be accessible to a wide range of readers, it avoids, wherever possible, technical jargon and defines terms where these have to be used. The Handbook is structured to allow it to be used in a number of ways: as a readable general introduction; as a source of guidance on specific techniques or aspects of quarry design; or as a reference source to lead the reader to other sources of information and advice (e.g. primary legislation, regulation, guidance, data, and technical and scientific reports, papers and books). It is structured to allow accessible presentation in a variety of paper, electronic and combined formats.

The Handbook follows the entire design process from site selection and initial concept, through detailed development of the proposals and application for planning permission, to preparation for implementation once planning permission has been obtained. Funding for the project that has led to the production of this Handbook came from the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund (ALSF). Accordingly, the Handbook is specifically directed towards aggregate quarrying, both crushed rock and sand and gravel, drawing distinctions where appropriate. However, although the examples are drawn from the aggregates industry, all of the principles and many of the specific elements of guidance and sources of information are generally applicable to all types of mineral working. The guidance is relevant to extensions to existing operations as well as to new quarries on greenfield sites. It is also relevant to revisions of existing quarry designs and operating plans that may be required to respond to previously unexpected commercial, operational, geological, environmental, planning or licensing conditions (or combinations) that may arise.

In order to achieve the key objectives of good quarry design, it is important to understand both the context for design and the design process. These are described in Parts I and II of the Handbook and the delivery of successful design is described in Part III. The handbook is supported by appendices (Part IV), and an extensive bibliography (Part V).

To read the Handbook starting from the contents pages CLICK HERE.

To download the entire document (an 8Mb zip file containing PDFs of all chapters), CLICK HERE


Capability Statements

To download our Capability Statements please refer to the Downloads page.

If you would like Project Description Sheets which give examples of our work or further information regarding GWP’s experience, please do not hesitate to contact us.