Students Awestruck on Imerys Careers Trip

Over 100 Year 9 students donned high-vis jackets, safety goggles and hard hats on Wednesday as they headed on a memorable field trip to local Imerys facilities.

Imerys is a multi-national company that specialises in the production and processing of industrial minerals. They employ 16,900 people worldwide and have major China Clay operations here on our doorstep in Cornwall.

Students first visited Littlejohns China Clay Mine which is the largest open cast kaolin mine in the world – located just outside of Roche. Despite many of the pupils having strong family links to mining, it was the first time they had seen the scale of the industry.

They then visited a drying site just outside of Bugle, known as Rocks Tube Press. There are 120 tubes on site and each tube can process 80kg of clay per 5-minute press. The entire facility can produce a staggering 500,000 kilotons of clay over a 12-month period.

After an introduction at the tube press plant, students were split into 4 groups where they enjoyed a carousel of department talks in which they met the EHS team, scientists, operators, geologists, managers, apprentices and lithium experts.

View from the Careers Lead

Mr Hammersley
Careers Lead at Penrice Academy

“What a fantastic day!

The thing that I noticed the most was how awestruck the students were with the scale of operations at Imerys. From £20,000 truck tyres to enormous quarry pits which are 400 meters wide and deep; the scale is hard to comprehend.

It was great to hear about the skills and career journeys of the employees we met, and how their roles have evolved over time. There were lots of questions from curious students and lots of smiles throughout the day. All in all, it was a resounding success!”

A Familiar Face

Our Year 9 students were also pleasantly surprised to see Hannah from the Class of 2023 who, after only finishing Penrice less than 12 months ago, is already thriving in an apprenticeship role at Imerys.

Hannah (Former Penrice Student – Class of 2023)

Message of Thanks

Penrice would like to take this opportunity to thank Imerys for hosting us and for inspiring our students.

Where Next?

Local Author Justyn Edwards Visits Penrice

Penrice Students Experience Youth Election

Year 9 Enjoy Apprenticeships Field Trip