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Quarries

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105 active quarries throughout Normandy
Licensing for app. 30 million tonnes
Mining that respects both the landscape and its inhabitants
Calcia cement plant in Ranville: maximum production capacity: 650,000 tonnes
Caen stone, renowned for its quality



The region's subsoil is both rich and varied: some of France's oldest rock formations can be found in the north of the Cotentin peninsula, together with more recent alluvial valleys. A great diversity of materials is therefore available: granite, sandstone and shale of varying hues and characteristics, limestone around Caen, for a long time referred to as "Caen stone" and used for the construction of monuments and residential buildings, Bessin sands, clay to the east of Calvados… A great variety of mining sites to suit the equally diverse source of minerals available.

1-Brittle rock
Alluvial aggregates are essentially extracted from the beds of alluvial valleys within which they have accumulated over hundreds of thousands of years. Marine aggregates are former alluvial deposits that were immersed several thousands of years ago during the raise in sea level that followed the last ice age. Certain quarries mine brittle rock in water, in other words using a dredge and/or a pump.
Sands in Vaux sur Seulles, Esquay sur Seulles, Crouay.
Clay in Bavent, Glos or Le Tronquay
Aggregates can also originate from massive rock quarries following crushing.
2-Massive rock
Crushed or solid rock, essentially used for public works, depending on its nature – shale/schist and clay (Vignats, Fresney le Puceux, Mouen, Vaubadon) or granite (Le Gast, Champ du Boult). Limestone in Amblie, Cauvicourt or Ranville.

Quarry licences and production limitations in 2005
37 quarries in Calvados are licensed for a maximum production of 12.9 and a real production of 8.2 million tonnes
48 quarries in Manche are licensed for a maximum production of 10.4 and a real production of 5.5 million tonnes
20 quarries in Orne are licensed for a maximum production of 6.1 and a real production of 4.1 million tonnes
No new quarry had been authorised since 2002. La Sablière Mangeas in Sacey (Manche) and the reopening of Guilberville were authorised in 2006.

Alluvial aggregates can sometimes be replaced by aggregates originating from the recycling of public works and construction waste. Although the production of recycled aggregates represents approximately 4% of France's total aggregate production, the market for this type of aggregate is constantly increasing.
For the first time, an exclusive authorisation for the exploration of marine aggregates in the Seine Bay has been granted for a period of 5 years.
In 2004, the Calvados Préfet granted a 30-year licence for mining Caen limestone in the underground quarry in Cintheaux. The maximum authorised annual production is 9,000 tonnes, and is intended for the restoration of historic monuments, such as Caen castle.

Close-up look at CALCIA
The Ranville-based cement plant is run by the Société des Ciments CALCIA, established in Normandy since 1933 and a subsidiary of the leading European cement group, Italcementi. Built in 1964, the plant currently employs a staff of 98. Its maximum annual production capacity is 650,000 tonnes of finished goods. The quarry operates according to the semidry process. Around 80% of the raw material required to produce cement is extracted from the limestone quarry in Ranville and Hérouvillette, the remaining 20% originating from the clay quarry in Touffreville and Bavent.











  • Chargement de minerai
  • Usine d'extraction de minerai
  • CARRIERE DE CINTHEAUX
  • PIERRE DE CAEN
  • Carrière de Vaubadon vue du ciel