Large volumes of marine sand and gravel have been used in construction projects throughout the last century and into the present, most of it for the production of concrete.

Since 1955 in excess of 900 million tonnes have been dredged from the sea and used for the built environment.

Marine aggregates have therefore a long record of successful use in the manufacture of structural concrete and have been the choice of aggregate on many major and demanding construction projects.



The key standards for aggregates to be used in the manufacture of concrete are BS EN 12620 (Aggregates for concrete). As this European standard serves all types of aggregates and test methods across the European Union it should be used in conjunction with the UK guidance document PD 6682-1.

BS EN 206 -1 (Concrete – Specification, performance, production and conformity) specifies requirements for concrete and its constituents including aggregates. The UK national complimentary standard which should used in conjunction with BS EN 206 is BS 8500.


How are Marine aggregates different from land-based aggregates?

The main differences between the majority of land-based aggregates and marine aggregates are the presence of chloride ions (from sea salt) and shell.


Further information

British standards documents:

BS EN 12620:2013 - Aggregates for concrete

PD 6682-1:2009+A1:2013 - Aggregates for concrete. Guidance on the use of BS EN 12620

BS EN 206-1:2000 - Concrete specification, performance and conformity

BS 8500-1:2006+A1:2012 - Concrete - Complementary to BS EN 206-1. Method of specifying and guidance for the specifier

BS 8500-2:2006+A1:2012 - Complementary to BS EN 206-1. Specification for constituent materials and concrete