Quarries 2017-03-01T10:18:48+00:00

QUARRIES

QUARRYING IS A TRADITION IN THE TOURNAI AND SOIGNIES AREAS. SINCE TIME IMMEMORIAL THIS ECONOMIC ACTIVITY HAS PROVIDED WORK FOR THOUSANDS OF MEN AND WOMEN.

This activity, well over a hundred years old, was made possible due to the high limestone content in the soil. CCB has 2 quarries in the region: Gaurain quarry and Clypot quarry. It also has a quarry in Barry that is as yet not worked.

GAURAIN QUARRY

The Gaurain quarry has stone of original organic 350 million years old and composed mainly of animal organisms which, over the centuries, have sedimented at the bottom of the seas. In chemical and mineralogical terms, it is a limestone characterised by a very high calcium carbonate content endowing it with exceptional mechanical properties. There are also other elements like silica and aluminium. Gaurain quarry is the biggest in Europe. Each year, 7.5 million tons of limestone are extracted to produce hard limestone aggregates and cement.

CLYPOT QUARRY

Located at Neufvilles, near Soignies, the Clypot quarry produces 700,000 tons of hard limestone aggregates each year mainly for the construction industry in northern and central Belgium.

This quarry also has the particularity of hosting another industrial activity on the site, i.e. the extraction and shaping of small granite stone by the company Carrières de la Pierre Bleue Belge.

The site covers 160 hectares and the limestone formations quarried belong to the upper Tournaisian period. The deposits consist of 3 geologic veins:

  • Raches: dark grey colour, clay and fossile-bearing (Malon Fontaine limestone).
  • Small granite: blue-grey to grey-black limestone (quarried for cutting stone)
  • Cliquantes: bright grey coloured limestone base under the small granite