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Beaminster Tunnel stabilisation works, Preston

13 January, 2016 | 18:30 - 20:30

Work taking place on the Beaminster Tunnel stabilisation project
Work taking place on the Beaminster Tunnel stabilisation project

About this event

A landslide in July 2012 unexpectedly closed the 180-year old Beaminster Tunnel, cutting off a busy transportation route and threatening to damage the local economy. Parsons Brinckerhoff designed and supervised ground investigation and subsequent stabilization measures for the steep slopes above both portals of the tunnel. The slopes and portal wing walls were stabilized using environmentally sustainable soil nailing techniques that ensured minimal removal or importation of materials at the site.

The project, which was completed in July 2013, was carried out in a glare of publicity, as closure of Beaminster tunnel, the oldest on the UK road network, caused considerable disruption to traffic in the area. Among the issues the design team had to consider were the level of public scrutiny, engaging local landowners and stakeholders, and the sensitivity of the listed tunnel structure itself. In addition, very few parts of the existing slope were accessible for ground investigation. The 3-D “bowl” shaped geometry of the slopes above each of the tunnel portals added complexity to the analysis, and so it was important to make sure enough sections were analysed to take account of the geometric changes. One of the aspects of the project that made it so successful was the early involvement of main contractor Raymond Brown and specialist subcontractor Can to resolve practical issues on the access and equipment required to get the soil nails in. As a result, ramps were used to enable the majority of the nails to be installed using a long reach excavator instead of rope access A-frame rigs, speeding up the installation. The project won the 2014 Ground Engineering award for “UK Project with a Geotechnical Value of between £1M and £3M”.

Speakers: Ian King (WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff) and Victoria Turner-Weare, (formerly WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff)

Refreshments will be served from 18:00 for a meeting start of 18:30

Event materials

The following materials are available for download:

Ian King

Ian is a Technical Director and Head of Discipline for WSP|Parsons Brinckerhoff’s UK Ground Engineering business. He has played a key role in the adoption of a revised Quality Assurance system within the firm and its continued development. His general knowledge of geotechnical engineering has been recognised by Thomas Telford Training who utilise his knowledge and skills as a Tutor on some of their courses, notably on the implementation of Eurocode 7.

Victoria Turner-Weare

Victoria is a chartered geotechnical engineer with experience of infrastructure schemes involving the design of shallow and deep foundations, retaining walls and slope stabilisation using soil nailing techniques. Her experience includes supervising ground investigations and providing geotechnical supervision for pile installation and soil nailing as well as undertaking the condition appraisal of infrastructure embankments in accordance with HD 41/03.