25 July 2016

Judges visit UK projects

With the research phase at the mid-way point, the UK Quarry Life Award judges have visited the four participating projects for an update on progress and to meet the students and academics involved.

The projects are being carried out at Grange Top quarry in Rutland, Misson quarry in Nottinghamshire and Batts Combe quarry, Somerset.

Senior sustainability manager Martin Crow, who is UK co-ordinator for the award scheme and chairs the judging panel, led the site visits, accompanied by international jury member Richard Grimmet from Birdlife.

At Grange Top quarry in Ketton, which supplies limestone to the nearby cement plant, a project by Cranfield University is investigating how the removal and storage of soils during quarrying can impact on ecosystem services.

At Misson sand and gravel quarry, students from Nottingham Trent University are looking at the importance of bare ground to invertebrate biodiversity.

Two projects are being carried out at the Batts Combe limestone quarry in Cheddar – a study on the impact of grassland restoration on the availability of bat prey by the University of the West of England, and an investigation by Bath Spa University into the part drones can play in providing an accurate, efficient and safe survey method.

“The projects all have the potential to offer real benefits to the participants, the company and the environment,”  said Martin Crow. “We were impressed with the standard of the research and the enthusiasm of the contestants.”