Quarry worker

Alternative titles for this job include Quarry operative, opencast mine worker, opencast miner

Quarry workers dig out and process rock, slate, gravel and sand from quarries or mines.

Average salary (a year)

£16,000 Starter

to

£25,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

53 to 55 a week

You could work

weekends on shifts

How to become a Quarry worker

You can get into this job through:

  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly

Apprenticeship

You could get into this job through an intermediate apprenticeship as a mineral processing mobile and static plant operator.

Entry requirements

You'll usually need:

  • some GCSEs, usually including English and maths, for an intermediate apprenticeship

More information

Direct application

You can apply directly for jobs if you've got experience or qualifications in construction, mining, or operating heavy machinery like mechanical diggers.

More information

Career tips

A relevant driving licence, for example a large goods vehicle or plant operator's licence, may give you an advantage when looking for work.

Further information

You can get more advice about working in the quarrying industry from Careers in Quarrying.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • the ability to work on your own
  • to enjoy working with other people
  • the ability to work well with your hands
  • physical skills like movement, coordination, dexterity and grace
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • the ability to work well with others
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • physical fitness and endurance
  • Being able to use a computer terminal or hand-held device may be beneficial for this job.

Restrictions and requirements

You'll need to:

  • have a driving licence that includes LGV (lorries) or PCV (buses), if you work with these vehicles

You may need your own transport to get to work, as quarries are usually in the countryside.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day tasks may include:

  • using mechanical diggers to excavate rock, clay, sand, gravel and slate
  • operating equipment like rock crushers and stone graders
  • using drilling equipment
  • maintaining vehicles and machinery
  • setting and detonating explosives
  • transporting materials in large trucks

Working environment

You could work at a quarry.

Your working environment may be cramped, physically demanding, dusty and dirty.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

Career path and progression

With training and experience, you could become a site supervisor or manager. You could also move into:

  • quality control
  • explosives work (shotfiring)
  • health and safety inspection
  • machine and plant maintenance
  • laboratory work (testing samples)

Training opportunities

Apprenticeships In England

We can't find any apprenticeship vacancies in England for a Quarry worker right now.

The Find an apprenticeship service can help you with your search, send alerts when new apprenticeships become available and has advice on how to apply.

Courses In England

Are you interested in becoming a Quarry worker?

Search for training courses near you.

Get help using this service

Call 08000 150 950

8am to 10pm, 7 days a week

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