An introduction to the investigation, extraction, processing and specification of natural soil and rock materials, with an emphasis on why particular material properties are sought and how they may be modified. The book covers the full range of soil and rock construction materials including crushed stone, sand and gravel, natural and prepared roadbase, earth fill and rock fill, heavy clays, armour stone and dimension stone. Environmental aspects of quarrying, such as the use of waste materials, blast monitoring and pit reclamation, are studied in detail. New developments are discussed such as the trend towards fewer but larger quarries, the employment of by-products, and the need for upgrading marginal materials. The use of plenty of diagrams and photos, and a clear writing style, make this an easy book to follow and extensive reference lists in each chapter guide the reader further into the more specialist topics.