Many excavated quarries are subsequently used for waste disposal operations and frequently imported landfill provides the only means of restoring a former quarry to some beneficial afteruse. Concentrating solely on the final surface cover, this paper sets out some of the principles, which should be considered by those involved in landfill operations to ensure the long term success of restoration schemes. With the emphasis on restoration to agriculture, factors such as availability of cover materials and depths necessary are discussed in terms of requirements to support plant growth, protect clay capping layers and prevent damage to agricultural implements. Soil handling and appropriate after care management are considered. 4 refs.