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Data for Primary Aggregates


Mineral Extraction in Great Britain. Business Monitor PA1007

Under Section 1 of the Statistics of Trade Act 1947, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) collect minerals production data in a yearly census, the Annual Minerals Raised Inquiry (AMRI) on behalf of Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and Department for Business Innovation and Skills (DBIS), the Scottish Government (SG) and the Welsh Government (WAG). It collects figures relating to the quantity and value of sales of all non-energy mineral extraction in England, Scotland and Wales. This is the most recognised and widely used source of statistical information on minerals in Great Britain. The Government uses this information for land-use planning to ensure that the necessary mineral resources are available. It is also used in national accounts and to meet the obligations of an EU regulation.

The AMRI survey is statutory and, therefore, it is compulsory for operators to respond to the ONS questionnaire. In recent years, ONS has used data from the BGS BRITPITS database and Directory of Mines and Quarries to identify a list of current mineral operators in Great Britain in order to send the questionnaires out. This has resulted in a more complete picture of the industry, and ONS has achieved response return rates of up to 99%, enabling the data to be prepared with less estimation for non-returnees.

Results are presented in Mineral Extraction in Great Britain Business Monitor PA1007. This publication presents data by mineral, end use and area of origin, and includes aggregate uses in the sand and gravel, sandstone, igneous rock, limestone, dolomite and chalk tables. The data are shown by Mineral Planning Authority (MPA) or small groups of MPAs, by regions in England and also by country. Quantities for marine-dredged sand and gravel are also published in this document, but these are collected as part of a separate survey.

Results for the most recent survey, produced by ONS in 2010, are currently available to download only via the DCLG website:


The DCLG web page holding data from the 2009 survey is archived by The National Archives and may be found via:


Downloads of the data from surveys prior to 2009 are available from the ONS website, where a list of links to individual surveys may be accessed via:


The ONS web page with links to survey data for 1999 – 2008 are also archived by The National Archives;


Products of the European Community – PRODCOM

ONS conduct an annual survey in the UK entitled Products of the European Community, PRODCOM. This is a European Union (EU) wide survey of production, mainly for the manufacturing industries, and covers 3,866 products classified to 234 industries. It is based on a “sample” of respondents and the results are then grossed up. Companies selected for the PRODCOM survey supply sales value data for the products they manufacture, as well as non-manufacturing income. In addition, companies in approximately three-quarters of the covered industries supply volume sales data. UK statistics for ‘Other Mining and Quarrying’, which incorporate statistics for aggregates, are presented in Division 08. Data are derived from PA1007 AMRI and amalgamated with that from the Quarterly Survey of Marine Aggregates and the Northern Ireland Annual Minerals Statement.

The data can be accessed through the ONS web site via:


Annual Minerals Statement (Northern Ireland)

In Northern Ireland, the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, Northern Ireland (DETINI) operates a similar statutory census to AMRI under Article 18(1) of the Quarries (Northern Ireland) Order 1983.

The summary data are presented by mineral, quantity produced and selling value and also by county. They are published in the form of the Annual Mineral Statement or Annual Mineral Report on the DETINI website via:


Annual Monitoring Report (Aggregate Working Parties)

Each Mineral Planning Authority (MPA) in England and Wales conducts an annual survey of sales, permitted reserves and planning permissions, for primary land-won sand and gravel and crushed rock aggregates. In many areas data are also gathered for building stone, silica sand and material for other non-aggregate uses (e.g. limestone worked for cement or industrial uses) although these data are not always published.

The surveys are voluntary and response rates vary, therefore estimates are usually made by MPA officers for non-responses in order to calculate a total for the MPA. The figures relating to aggregates in each region are sent to the relevant Aggregates Working Party (AWP) where they are collated and published in Annual Monitoring Reports. The AWP regions in England are East of England, East Midlands, London, North East, North West, South East, South West, West Midlands and Yorkshire & the Humber. The content of AWP Annual Monitoring Reports vary depending on the region although all provide data on sales, reserves and planning permissions granted or refused.

The list of Annual Monitoring Reports for England can be found through the DCLG website:


There are similar organisations known as Regional Aggregate Working Parties (RAWPs) in North and South Wales. The survey data for the Welsh RAWPs is published in Annual Reports which are available via the relevant websites.

For South Wales Regional Aggregate Working Party (SWRAWP) Gweithor Agregau Rhanbarthol De Cymru (GARDC);


For the North Wales Regional Aggregate Working Party (NWRAWP). Gweithgor Rhanbarthol Gogledd Cymru ar Agregau (GRCA);


The Crown Estate Marine Aggregate Statistics

The amalgamated statistics from The Crown Estate’s royalty returns are published annually in Marine Aggregates, The Crown Estate Licences, Summary of Statistics. This document presents a summary of tonnages landed, and then statistics by port and region, and includes material extracted from the UK continental shelf but landed at foreign ports, which is not available elsewhere.

These statistics refer to removal of sand and gravel from the bed of the English and Welsh Territorial Sea and Continental Shelf, under licence from The Crown Estate Commissioners. Removals from areas not in The Crown Estate ownership are not included in these statistics, nor are dredged materials removed purely for navigational reasons and not used beneficially.
Statistics are available for 2007-2011 and can be accessed via:


Annual Report, Construction Statistics

Construction Statistics Annual Report brings together a wide range of statistics currently available on the construction industry from a variety of sources. This provides a broad perspective on statistical trends in the construction industry through the last decade. In addition, there are some international comparisons.

Chapter 14 of this report includes statistics relating to Building Materials and these include those derived from AMRI and the Quarterly Survey of Marine Aggregates. Table 14.4 in the report lists sales of aggregate (sand and gravel, including marine dredging, and crushed rock) by end use in Great Britain, broken down by country and region in the current year, and Table 14.5 shows a series of total sales of ‘other building materials’ including sand and gravel and crushed rock covering 12 years with revisions since the previous edition. The ONS provide access to the report via:


of which data in the latest edition can be accessed as Excel tables via:




United Kingdom Minerals Yearbook

The United Kingdom Minerals Yearbook, published by the British Geological Survey, is an annual publication providing comprehensive statistical data on minerals production, consumption and trade in the UK's minerals industry.

Data tables include production of minerals by commodity, with additional details provided for sand and gravel and crushed rock relating to production, imports and exports, consumption and end use. Sand and gravel data includes marine-dredged statistics.

Except where otherwise stated in the tables, all the statistics shown relate to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The Channel Islands and the Isle of Man are also included in the ‘United Kingdom’ overseas trade statistics, but are excluded from the production statistics. The UK part of the Continental Shelf is included in both the overseas trade and the production statistics.

The Yearbook is available as a download from the BGS MineralsUK.com website Commodities and Statistics web pages;


A summary table of minerals produced in the United Kingdom in 2010, based on UKMY is also available for download from the above web page.

A summary table of minerals produced in the United Kingdom in 2010, based on UKMY is accessed via:




Monthly Statistics of Building Materials and Components

The Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) Construction Market Intelligence (CMI) has responsibility for the collection, analysis and publication of statistics on the construction sector, to provide regular statistical analyses of building materials and overseas trade, price and cost indices and key performance indicators for the construction industry. CMI work closely with economists in BIS to assist in the assessment of the construction market and in the formulation of efficient policies.

Monthly Statistics of Building Materials and Components includes the latest detailed information on selected building materials. It contains monthly data on price indices, bricks, cement and concrete blocks; and quarterly data on sand and gravel, slate, concrete roofing tiles and ready-mixed concrete. In addition, there is annual and quarterly information on the value of overseas trade in building materials.

There are two components to these publications which refer to aggregate minerals. Firstly, the ONS carry out a quarterly inquiry of all marine-dredged sand and gravel landed at ports in England and Wales (there is no material landed in Scotland or Northern Ireland). This is statutory under the Statistics of Trade Act 1947, as the inquiry is intended to be a census covering all marine-dredged sand and gravel sites. 59 firms were selected for the inquiry using the British Geological Survey (BGS) Directory of Mines and Quarries for information on wharves.

The Quarterly Survey of Marine Aggregates survey only requests quantity data, based on sales. Data from four quarters are summed to produce the annual data which are then amalgamated into regions and published in Business Monitor PA1007 Mineral Extraction in Great Britain. These data are released in Tables 4, 5 and 6 of Monthly Statistics of Building Materials and Components, together with data for land-won sand and gravel. Estimates are made for non-responses but no adjustments are made to previous quarters when producing the annual figures. As a consequence, the marine-dredged figures published in Business Monitor PA1007 may contain a greater proportion of estimation than would be expected if they were collected annually.

Secondly, sand and gravel land-won data are collected using a quarterly voluntary survey that has an average 90% response rate. A sample of >200 sand and gravel producers comprising a panel for the provision of data on land-won sand and gravel are surveyed. This sample covers all regions and the number of producers selected in each region will reflect the relative size of the industry there. The data are then ‘grossed up’ to represent the whole of Great Britain.

Data are summarised as sales of sand and gravel in Great Britain, including marine-dredged, see above, by quarter and year, by end use in GB and region and by Mineral Planning Authority.

Data are released in Tables 4, 5 and 6 of Monthly Statistics of Building Materials and Components, together with the marine-dredged sand and gravel data. Annual totals for land-won sand and gravel in this publication are estimates and do not match the census returns for AMRI. Although data are published monthly, the statistics are presented as quarterly. Apart from price indices and the value to overseas trade, the report does not include statistics on crushed rock aggregates.

Data can be viewed via:


or via here, together with a commentary:


Earlier publications are archived and available via:


The data, together with data on crushed rock derived from AMRI (2.1.1), is also published by ONS as a table in an annual report of construction statistics:


of which the latest edition can be accessed via:




Collation of the results of the Aggregate Minerals Survey for England and Wales

DCLG and the Welsh Government commission a four yearly survey of mineral operators. The data are gathered and collated at the local level by the Mineral Planning Authorities (MPAs), and then collated at a regional level by the Aggregate Working Parties (AWPs) and finally, collated and published at the national level by a contractor (in recent years this national collation has been carried out by the BGS). This survey process ensures that confidentiality is preserved as only the MPAs see the actual survey returns for individual sites and operators. The estimated return rate for this survey is over 90% in all regions.

The data collected relates mainly to minerals used for aggregates purposes, be they extracted as a principal activity or as a subsidiary activity, such as a by-product of building stone or ancillary to silica sand extraction. Whilst statistics relating to construction sand extracted during the process of working silica sand deposits are captured, the silica sand itself is grouped with other minerals for non-aggregate uses and not separately disclosed.

The AM survey collects data for sand and gravel (both land-won and marine-dredged) and crushed rock. The latter includes limestone (including dolomite), igneous rock (including metamorphic rock), sandstone (including gritstone, greywacke and quartzite), chalk and ironstone. This comprehensive survey covers quantities of sales by end use, consumption, sub-regional and inter-regional flows, permitted reserves, and planning permissions granted, refused, withdrawn or awaiting a decision. For planning permissions, the AM surveys collect data not only for the survey year but also the preceding three years. The AM survey is the only survey to collect data by selected environmental designations. The resulting report presents the data by region and sub-region (which are MPAs, or small groups of MPAs, aligned to those utilised by the AWPs for their Annual Monitoring Reports). Maps are provided to illustrate the report, including location of active aggregate quarries and marine sand and gravel landing wharfs, sub-regions used and inter-regional flows.

Information about the survey can be accessed via:


and the latest collation and associated maps can be accessed via:


There is also a link from the BGS MineralsUK.com website Commodities and Statistics web pages:


Scottish Aggregate Survey 2005

An equivalent Aggregate Minerals Survey for Scotland was carried out by Scottish Executive (now Scottish Government), in 2006-7 and which collated data for 2005. Data was collected by nine regions; East Central, Highland, North East, Orkney, Shetland, South, Tayside and Fife, West Central and Western Isles. There was an estimated response rate of between 85% and 89%

Data are presented for regional and national production of crushed rock and sand and gravel, destination of sales, including exports to England and outside the UK and inter-regional flow. There is also a table of estimated consented reserves and maximum supply at 2005 production levels in years.

The Scottish Aggregate Survey (SAS) was not as comprehensive as the one for England and Wales because it did not collect data relating to end use of the extracted material or type of crushed rock (e.g. igneous rock, limestone, sandstone, etc). It also did not take account of designated areas and made no distinction between permitted reserves at active or inactive sites. The data collected for distribution of product sold related only to regions and not sub-regions. Figures relating to planning permissions or refusals were not requested and there is no landing of marine-dredged sand and gravel in Scotland.

Summary statistics of production 1990-2005 from PA1007 are also presented and the survey report notes that the data obtained for crushed rock and sand and gravel do not match those for 2005 given by PA1007, and that there were some discrepancies at regional level between the two surveys. Orkney and Western Isles aggregate production and sales were reported by SAS but not PA1007, and Shetland sand and gravel were reported by PA1007 but not by SAS.

The report and data are available either as a complete pdf or as webpages via:


Marine Aggregate Dredging five year review and Marine Aggregate Dredging 1998–2007 a ten year review

The Crown Estate published two reviews: i) Marine aggregate dredging five year review, The area involved 1998–2002, and ii) Marine aggregate dredging 1998–2007 a ten year review, both in conjunction with the British Marine Aggregates Producers Association (BMAPA). These contain summary statistics for the years in question. The five year review contains areas of dredging statistics by region, and the ten year review contains tonnages landed in addition to the areas dredged. An overview of the Crown Estate’s interests in marine aggregates can be accessed via:


and the reviews and other publications, including Marine aggregate reserves data, can be accessed via:


Summary Data: Sustainable consumption & production

The Minerals Product Association (formerly Quarry Products Association or QPA) offers, via their website, a summary table of consumption and production data over a two year period (currently 2009–2010) which can be accessed via:


and in more detail via:


The association also produce a market summary from 1980 to 2010 which includes data for aggregate sales, recycling and end use, together with construction output values, available as a webpage via:


In addition, the Mineral Products Association publishes yearly reports containing summary statistics available from their website:


The current Accelerating progress. Meeting the Challenges - Summary Sustainable Development Report 2011 contains consumption and production figures covering the past two years prior to publication, 2009 and 2010;


Data presented by the Minerals Products Association in the above report are based on evidence provided by the members of the association and are based on estimates.

A lengthier document Sustainable Development Report 2009, containing Headline Performance Indicators of employment, transport, resource efficiency, etc as well as appendices with summary tables covering the above as well as aggregates production, sources of primary aggregates, recycled aggregates, and cement production etc was published by the Minerals Products Association. The data presented are based on the AMRI survey results in PA1007, with estimates of production for Northern Ireland added to make a total for UK aggregate production. The report is available via:


The above report also includes figures for the European production of aggregates, which are reproduced from the European Aggregates Association (UEPG) Estimates of Aggregates Production.

European Estimates of Aggregates Production

The European Aggregates Association (UEPG) are the trade association representing the European quarrying industry. It includes the UK Minerals Products Association as a member. The UEPG website provides data for European aggregate production and the UK data presented by UEPG for the year concerned is provided by the Minerals Products Association Data for only 2008 and 2009 are available via:


and is summary data for the year concerned.