Without quarries that produce mineral products, life as we know it could not exist. The majority of quarry products are used in the construction industry, making the places that keep us safe and warm and supporting our modern lifestyle and economic well-being – building houses, transport networks, commercial and industrial buildings, utilities, schools and hospitals.

Mortimer Quarry is an important source of sand and gravel for key regional infrastructure and construction projects. Without a local supply of aggregates, materials would need to be sourced from much further afield, increasing the cost of raw material and creating additional environmental impacts.

Vehicle movements within the site area will be minimised through the use of a series of conveyors to transport the dug material across the site and over the gantry to the processing plant.

Lorry routeing is west along Welshman’s Road, apart from local deliveries within a two mile radius.

Careful phasing coupled with sensitive landscaping and highest operating standards and practices will minimise any acoustic or dust impacts of the quarry. Hills will undertake monitoring to ensure that acoustic and dust levels as specified in the planning permission are adhered to.

We use a loading shovel to dig the sand and gravel – there will be no blasting on this site. Vehicles will be fitted with ‘white noise’ bleepers to reduce acoustic impacts.

A dust mitigation strategy has already been approved and includes such measures as use of water bowsers, speed limits and perimeter bunds. The quarry operations have been designed to prevent dust arising as far as possible and by trying to keep vehicle movements to a minimum which is the biggest generator of dust. To help this, the sand and gravel will be transported across the site by conveyors rather than trucks.

In the plant area we will keep roadways clean and when conditions require it we will sometimes use water sprays. The surrounding vegetation, additional landscape planting and bunding will further help reduce the dust.

Water monitoring around the full extent of the working phases has been ongoing for serval years to establish background levels and this will continue through the life of the quarry and its restoration.

Both groundwater and surface water are monitored monthly.

Some areas of existing vegetation will be retained helping to screen operations and the progressive phased working of the site and restoration programme will keep ‘open areas’ of the site to a minimum. Further bunds (mounds) will also help to hide the quarrying activity from view and with sensitive planting they will blend into the surrounding landscape.

Our workings will have minimal impact on neighbours as far as possible and the creation of a new landscape affording recreational and biodiversity opportunity should be perceived as beneficial to the local area.

We do not envisage that our proposals will have any negative impact on users of local facilities and in our experience there has not been any negative impact on facilities in the areas where we operate other quarry sites.

Our proposal provides up to 10 new local jobs and will also provide work for other associated businesses.

Footpath and bridleway diversions, when necessary, will be temporary until mineral extraction and restoration have ceased.

An additional footpath is proposed to increase public access to the area.

No official bridleways or public rights of way will be affected by Phase 1.

Extensive survey work has been carried out and detailed management and monitoring is planned to ensure any birds, bats, reptiles or badgers are accommodated in new areas around the site before each phase of extraction begins.

Walkover surveys will record the botanical interests and after restoration of each area the new habitats created will be monitored under the 10 year aftercare programme to ensure their success.

Our restoration proposals include sensitive landscaping that will enhance the biodiversity in the area by creating new habitats and wildlife corridors that link to surrounding habitats.

Quarry working practices are designed to avoid impacts to wildlife, for example soil stripping or removal of vegetation at appropriate times of the year.

Several possible areas of archaeological interest have been identified and, using suitably experienced archaeologists, these will be investigated after tree felling and before mineral extraction in those areas.

Additional work will be done on the gravels themselves by the same archaeology team as the site progresses.