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Quarry Worker Profile


This Section of the site details information that you might find useful if you are looking to secure employment or require further details regarding working as a Quarry Worker. This page details the following Information:-

  • Finding Suitable Work as a Quarry Worker
  • Working Duties Expected
  • Hours and Environment
  • Working Skills Required
  • Training Requirements
  • Salary Expectations
  • Trade Information
  • Other useful Quarry Worker Work Information

Finding Suitable Work

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Working Duties Expected

Quarries are a form of opencast mining in which the top layer of soil is removed to give access to rock underneath. This rock is used in large quantities by the construction industry and in a variety of manufacturing operations.

Quarries supply the building industry with crushed stone and sand. This is used to make cement and concrete for all types of building work. Stone chippings are also used for roads. Other quarries supply clay for bricks and, in some areas, slates for roofing.

Modern quarrying is a mechanical process involving large, powerful excavating, transporting and crushing equipment. Deep drilling machines and explosives are also used where necessary to break the rock.

The nature of the work varies enormously. Quarry workers may work in any of the following categories:

  • machine operators - working with large complex machinery such as excavators and cranes
  • plant and process operators - employed on crushers, screening plant and graders
  • maintenance workers - fitters, mechanics and electricians working on plant and vehicles
  • shotfirers - working with explosives
  • drivers - driving tippers and staff buses
  • technicians - working in laboratories on quality control or recording site samples.

Hours and Environment

The usual working week consists of 37.5 hours plus considerable amounts of overtime. Shift work is common. Larger companies will employ many workers in office accommodation at or near the quarry.

Sites are usually situated in country areas so travel may be involved. They can be muddy, noisy and dusty. The work is physically demanding and takes place in all weathers. It may involve lifting, bending, carrying and climbing.

Work in a quarry can be hazardous and protective clothing and equipment, overalls, boots, goggles, ear protectors and safety helmets must be worn.

Skills and Interests

To work in this industry you need to:

  • be physically fit
  • be aware of health and safety issues
  • have an aptitude for mechanical work
  • have the ability to work as part of a team
  • be able to follow instructions
  • have numeracy skills to work out material quantities needed for a job.


No formal entry qualifications are required. Most employers prefer to recruit applicants over 18.

All applicants should hold relevant driving licences.

There are opportunities to enter the industry at any age, particularly if you have some experience of the construction industry, or in mining or mobile plant operation.


Many employers have developed comprehensive training programmes leading to relevant NVQs/SVQs. Your job role will determine which units you cover. Programmes at Level 2 include:

  • drilling
  • plant machinery operation
  • process plant operation
  • road building.

For shot firing and blast design operatives there is the NVQ/SVQ Shot firing Operations Level 3.
For those working in quality control, dealing with rock and mineral samples, there is the NVQ/SVQ in Laboratory and Technical Activities at levels 2 and 3.

Health and safety plays a crucial role in this field and there are NVQ/SVQs at levels 3, 4 and 5 in Health, Safety and Environmental Management in Quarries.

EPIC also offer a range of specialised short training courses including risk assessment, safety awareness and inspection, quarry regulations and supervisory techniques.

For information on training and qualifications, contact EPIC below.


There are well over 2,000 quarries spread throughout the United Kingdom. Companies involved vary dramatically in size.

Opportunities exist to progress from quarry worker to operative, driver, mechanic or fitter. Alternatively it is possible to train as a driller or a shotfirer by undergoing specialist training in the use of drilling equipment and explosives.

Suitable experience will lead to supervisory and health and safety positions in the quarry while further educational qualifications can lead to jobs such as laboratory and quality control technicians. There are also opportunities to work abroad, especially in developing countries.

Annual Income

The annual income section is intended as a guideline only.

Starting rates are usually in the region of £8,000 to £10,000.
With experience, this figure can rise to £12,000.

Rates may increase with overtime, shift pay and bonuses.

Further information

EPIC Training Ltd
Alban Row
27-31 Verulam Road
St Albans
Tel: 01727 869008

Institute of Quarrying
7 Regent Street
Tel: 0115 941 1315

Other Useful Quarry Worker Work Information

We have a section available at this site on Quarry Worker job interview tips that you may find of interest should you wish to brush up your skills in this area and we also have number of career articles that may also be of use to you from within our guides and documents section.

Locations where we feature Jobs include:-
Aberdeen, Berkshire, Aberdeen, Bath, Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Birmingham, Bradford, Bristol, Cambridgeshire, Cardiff, Central London, Cheltenham, Cornwall, Coventry, Derby, Devon, Docklands, Dorset, Dundee, Durham, East Midlands, East Sussex, Edinburgh, Essex, Glasgow, Gloucester, Hampshire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Leeds, Leicester, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Midlands and in various parts of the West Midlands

Details of other Quarry Worker Jobs can also be found in other UK wide areas including:-
Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Norfolk, North London, North Midlands, Northampton, Northamptonshire, Northern Ireland, Northumberland, Norwich, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oxford, Oxfordshire, Plymouth, Salisbury, Scotland, Sheffield, Shropshire, Somerset, South East, South London, South Midlands, Southampton, Staffordshire Surrey, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Wales, Warwickshire, West End, West London, West Midlands, Worcestershire, York and throughout Yorkshire.

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