Environmental responsibility - land

Our 2030 land use commitments

Our progress

Biodiversity net gain will be fully integrated into our business for new quarry developments

We are trialling the DEFRA metric for assessing Biodiversity Net Gain options for all new quarry developments.

Following the publication of the Environment Bill, we have continued to work with the Mineral Products Association in developing specific case studies and guidance notes on how to interpret the DEFRA metric for minerals planning.

A new commitment to carry out biodiversity net impact studies at all quarry sites by 2025

All our quarrying operations are carrying out biodiversity Net Impact Assessments (NIAs) in conjunction with BirdLife International. 20 NIAs were carried out during the year bringing the total to 23.

A net improvement of 38.2% has been achieved for the 23 quarries completed to date.

A new commitment to have biodiversity management plans (BMPs) - also referred to as biodiversity action plans (BAPs) - at all our operational sites located within 1km of a High Biodiversity Value (HBV) nature conservation area by 2025. This previously only applied to quarries

100% of our active quarry sites already have a BMP which are being regularly updated.

In addition, 159 non-extraction operational sites within 1km of a HBV area have been identified by BirdLife International’s proximity study so BMPs can be developed. Comprehensive guidance has been developed to support the commitment which will be rolled out in 2023.

Reducing impact on land use in action

Hanson-RSPB Ouse Fen

Our partnership project with the RSPB is the largest planned nature conservation restoration scheme of its kind in Europe. The wetland project in Cambridgeshire shows how collaborative working between industry and the conservation sector can create thriving new habitat for wildlife. Along with Hanson UK this vast wetland will become nearly 1,000 football pitches in size over the next 30 years.

Transforming the Trent Valley

We are an active partner in this important project to restore the natural heritage of the Trent Valley in Staffordshire and Derbyshire, led by Staffordshire Wildlife Trust.

Transforming the Trent Valley is a five-year partnership project involving 18 organisations, which aims to reconnect local people with waterways and wetlands in the area and increase their appreciation for local heritage and the future of the landscape.

The project complements our ongoing conservation and restoration work at Barton quarry, near Burton-upon-Trent, which involves creating a large area of wetlands within floodplain woodland. 

Floodplain nature reserve in Milton Keynes

Our work to create Floodplain Forest Nature Reserve in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, has been recognised at the 2022 UEPG Sustainable Development Awards, held in Brussels.
It was nominated by the Mineral Products Association in the biodiversity category, where it gained a special mention for the creation of a dynamic river floodplain system that links with the main river, the Great Ouse.

The project involved the progressive restoration of our former Manor Farm sand and gravel quarry – in partnership with landowner, Milton Keynes Parks Trust – to create, re-establish and enhance several UK priority habitats, such as a network of lakes and ponds, wet woodland, wet grassland and reedbeds. 

The nature reserve attracts a multitude of birds, including wading birds such as redshank and lapwing, as well as water voles and otter, and is managed to give the community access to nature.  

Quarry Life Award 2022

This year is the fifth time our parent company Heidelberg Materials has held the Quarry Life Award, which is run every three years in more than 20 countries. It aims to raise the understanding of the biodiversity value of quarrying sites during and after extraction and share new best practices. Read more

Campaign for National Parks

We renewed our partnership which began more than 10 years ago with the Campaign for National Parks (CNP), the charity that protects, promotes and rallies support for the British countryside.

Our quarries at Horton and Ingleton are close to the North York Moors, with Pateley Bridge actually 
inside the park’s boundary, while Penderyn and Vaynor are near the Brecon Beacons.

The CNP is sending details about their role to the sites’ managers along with leaflets and information for employees and visitors. The agreement also involves sharing social media posts and news and offering volunteering opportunities.