Aidan J Graham

By on March 31, 2017

ANTHONY GRAHAM, Quarry Manager of Aidan J Graham reports on the development of WA331.

Aidan J Graham Pty Ltd currently has three remaining work authorities. The 40 hectare site of WA331 at 165 Quarry Road, Langwarrin was purchased by the company in the late 1990’s and is half of the original extractive holding owned and operated by JJ McGrath since the 1950’s.

Jack McGrath was from all reports a generous benefactor to the Langwarrin community so it would’ve been with great disappointment that his family watched his once profitable McGrath Sunshine Quarries falter during the 1980’s and 1990’s causing the property to be put up for sale. Upon sale, the property was subdivided, with the extractive holdings on the Northern portion still intact whilst the Southern section was subdivided further for housing.

The site is made up of a small deposit of natural dune sands for use in turf and landscaping applications and fattier sands for the construction industry and low grade mudstone, which is the predominant resource. Over the last decade, millions of tonnes of material have been supplied for major government funded projects predominantly the construction of bridge abutments at the Southern end of Eastlink in 2005/2006 and for Peninsula Link during 2010 through to 2012. Whilst for these major projects contractors operated on site to win material; the site’s day to day requirements are catered for using a Dressta TD40 bulldozer in conjunction with a Caterpillar D8L if required. The ripping abilities of the TD40 in the mudstone mean it can rip and push comfortably which means a day’s supply can be won at short notice. A QJ331 crusher and MS100 stockpiler process material to below 85mm for hard stand and building site access. The three sales loaders are all fitted with trade approved scales allowing flexibility and un-interrupted sales ability in the event of unforeseen events such as power interruption to the 80t weighbridge on site or during routine servicing.

The mudstone material on site is low grade, so one of the challenges for the site include market competitiveness.

With the advent of the small extractive holdings which have come into being and the increasing presence of C&D neither of which have the historic and ongoing costs of work authorities; fill products from extractive resources are often seen as uneconomical. The main advantage extractive resources have is that the product is always available and is not dictated by market factors.

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With higher than average rainfall in Melbourne, this fact is proving to be pivotal in carving a niche for the site within the market. Apart from that, the usual challenges which face many work authority holders are ever present; the economic realities of low-grade/low value material versus State government royalty applied at an arbitrary rate regardless of the value of the material and being a resource based industry in an increasingly “green” society.

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Aidan J Graham are one of the founding members of the CMPA and are a great advocate for small to medium sized family owned businesses especially in metropolitan Melbourne. The education, training and support by the CMPA has been invaluable not only in the development of our business but the growth of the extractive industry.

The aim for the future of the site will be to leave it in a better state than we found it, and to take the long view by proceeding holistically with our adjoining work authority in regards to final land form and end use.

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Sand and Stone Profile Questions


What is your name?

Anthony Graham

Who do you work for?

Aidan J Graham Pty Ltd

How many years have you been involved in the Industry?


What is your role at the company?

Quarry Manager

What are your hopes for the industry?

That one day the value of the industry is acknowledged by the communities in which we operate and at some point our value to the community reaches the same heights as their expectations of the industry.

What is on your radar for 2017?

Some local road upgrade work that we will hopefully find ourselves involved with and internal infrastructure projects.

What do you love about your work?

The constantly changing landscape we find ourselves in every day.

About Gavin Moreira

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