Granite, for stone kitchen worktops, stone floors and other uses, is a heavy material. However, thanks to technological advances in recent decades and affordable transport, it’s now possible to have a granite worktop from almost anywhere in the world. In fact, with a bit of effort you could select granites for your home from 6 different continents from granite suppliers!
A natural stone formed from molten rock cooled under pressure, granite is incredibly hard. The exact conditions under which it forms affect the type, colour and patterning of the stone. This means that each granite quarry will produce different kinds or qualities of granite.
In the 19th century, Britain was a major granite exporter. Technological shifts and growth of other aspects of the British economy have diminished the importance of granite. Although you can still find granite production in diverse areas of the UK, the stone extracted is rarely used for granite kitchen worktops. It’s primarily used for construction.
Granite from different areas has distinct colours and textures. Stone from quarries in the south-west tends to be pale. As an example, Tower Bridge in London is made from Cornish granite. Scotland produces many colours of granite, including red and orange. Many British granite quarries are still worked, and although the granite suppliers don’t produce stone destined for decorative purposes, they often still provide stone for repairs to existing historic buildings.
Granite is produced throughout Europe. The Scandinavian countries are major granite producers, and Belgium and Italy are known for producing fine granite. Spain, a traditional granite producer, has recently been increasing the amount of granite it exports. This variation allows British buyers to access a wider variety of colours and qualities, without paying a premium for lengthy transportation.
Other Granite Suppliers
Many other countries quarry granite. One of the world’s largest sculptures, the heads of four US presidents carved into Mount Rushmore, South Dakota, is made of granite and the New England region is particularly known as a granite supplier. Granite quarried in India, China, Brazil and Africa can also be commonly purchased in the UK. India is one of the world’s largest granite producers, users and exporters, and produces many other natural stones, too.
From Quarry to Kitchen
Granite is a natural stone, so it is hewn out of the earth in large slabs. As granite is so hard, the quarry crews have to use diamond-tipped drills. Depending on its intended purpose, a slab may be cut into slices or tiles, ready to be polished, shaped and finished by expert stone workers. Each slab is unique, as it is a natural product, so many people prefer to choose their exact piece of granite. At Surrey Marble and Granite, we’re proud to be premier UK granite suppliers, and are happy to answer any questions you might have on choosing the right granite for your home or business.