Sustainability Case studies

Responsible mining

For more than half a century, Sibelco’s Chelford quarry has operated in the heart of rural Cheshire, England. The site produces high-quality silica sand, predominantly for the glass industry.

Mining at Chelford will draw to a close in 2020 and a multi-million-pound land restoration programme is already well underway. This includes the creation of three new wildlife-friendly lakes, one of which sits adjacent to the home of the site’s closest neighbours, Victor and Margaret Roberts, who have lived next door to the quarry for 30 years.

We recently invited Mr and Mrs Roberts to the site to take part in a special ceremony to mark a new chapter in Chelford’s history. The couple turned off a set of pumps to allow water to start filling a former excavation area. The new lake will sit at the edge of Mr and Mrs Roberts’ garden, providing the couple with stunning views and endless hours watching wildlife.

Mr Roberts said: “When we moved here we didn’t know there would be quarrying next to our property. But we’ve always been kept informed and really did never have a problem. There was never an unsightly mess, the site was as clean and tidy as was possible.”

“Sibelco have been wonderful, that’s why we stayed here. We never had any doubts as to what the place would look like, and now at long last we’ll see some water. The view will be incredible, we’re delighted.”