Hard rock quarries generally have relatively stable faces and
often require little maintenance to keep sections clean. However,
health and safety requires faces to be low and terraced to
provide safe access without the danger of falling overhead
rocks. Alternatively, barriers may need to be erected to keep
visitors away from the rock face. In other instances, partial
back filling may enable face height to be reduced and provide
a good platform for study. In some quarries it may be necessary
to keep visitors at a considerable distance from the rock face.
In such instances a viewing platform may be provided together
with interpretation panels.
Geodiversity interpretation board at
an ironstone quarry in Leicestershire.
Example of a granite quarry.
Restored quarries are excellent locations for demonstrating
the great variety of different rock
types and the relationships between them. Many hard
rock quarries contain a variety of mineral samples – for
example quartz, pyrite, fluorite and calcite. Hard rock quarries
also provide an excellent opportunity to find, collect and
study fossils. These
may be particularly abundant in some Silurian, Carboniferous,
Jurassic and Cretaceous quarries. For safety reasons, collecting
should be restricted to fallen blocks on the floor of the quarry.
Protective clothing, including goggles, must always be worn
to prevent injury from flying fragments of rock, or metal from
chisels or hammers. In an ideal situation, suitable material
for collectors to hunt through can be provided during the restoration
process, away from the dangers of any quarry faces.