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Archive for the: Civil Engineering category

SWH receives praise for restoration works on Goat Walk in Topsham

Posted by on June 18, 2014 in Civil Engineering

SWH receives praise for restoration works on Goat Walk in Topsham

SWH has received excellent feedback after completing restoration works on Goat Walk in Topsham, a vital linking pedestrian route that is also of great historic value.

During the heavy storms at the end of January 2014, the historic walk was badly damaged with large sections of the wall collapsing, the concrete slabs making up the surface being displaced and broken and fill material being washed out with every subsequent high tide.

The existing concrete slabs had been cast on top of the stone walls which had left an unsightly edge. To carry out the repair work using the same method would have...

Grand Western Canal Swing Bridge Gate

Posted by on May 29, 2014 in Civil Engineering

When carrying out re-shaping works on the Grand Western Canal in January 2014, we uncovered a 200 year old swing bridge gate and a full investigation was undertaken by the local volunteer archaeology society.

The gate had been buried under the silt in the canal for decades.

SWH weathers the storm at the Grand Western Canal

Posted by on December 12, 2012 in Civil Engineering

SWH weathers the storm at the Grand Western Canal

SWH engineers worked through the night to secure the Great Western Canal after the damage caused by floods on Wednesday 21 November.

The freak weather conditions overcame the canal at Halberton, causing its bed to disappear and leaving a void down one side.

The engineers worked tirelessly to construct three dams at Rock Bridge, Grenway Bridge and Tiverton Road Bridge.  The works involved making the affected areas water tight, building a temporary retaining wall and dam and lowering the canal's water levels.

Peter Davies, Construction Director said:

"The damage caused to the canal is a direct result of the freak floods we have experienced.  Our...

Sandygate Roundabout, Exeter

Posted by on June 01, 2011 in Civil Engineering

Sandygate Roundabout, Exeter (Roads) SWH began works to re-align the central island to Sandygate Roundabout at Junction 30 of the M5 in the spring of 2008.

The works involved widening the carriageway either side of the motorway over bridge and included clearance of wooded areas and major re-grading of embankments.

The storm drainage system was largely altered and existing services repositioned or replaced. Temporary traffic signals were maintained until the new, permanent signals could be installed.

Due to the extreme volumes of traffic using this junction, the majority of works were carried out at night. To ensure the safety of both members of the...

Miller's Crossing, Exeter

Posted by on May 26, 2011 in Civil Engineering

45m long slender steel deck crosses the River Exe in Exeter allows pedestrians and cyclists to cross with plenty of space.

The deck is supported by McAlloy tie bars running up to a vertical A frame then onto raking A frames with the tie bars being held down with a 50tonne counter weight in the form of a millstone. The A frame stays are on the west bank of the river, between the river and the mill leat. Access was a major factor in erecting the masts and deck section.

The bridge was erected by installing the 2A frame masts and fixing the back...

White Rock

Posted by on May 25, 2011 in Civil Engineering

White Rock Business Park (Roads) The works involved the construction of a 600m long spine road into the development, two new roundabouts (one constructed on Long Road), a 7,600m2 modular attenuation tank (the largest of its type in the UK) and associated works.

Torbay Council, the South West Regional Development Agency and Abacus entered into an agreement to develop an area of land at Long Road in Paignton into a high-specification business park.

Long Road is one of the busiest arterial routes in the area, providing access to Torbay College and several large commercial and industrial businesses.

The works involved the construction of a...

River Walkham Boardwalk and Magpie Viaduct

Posted by on May 20, 2011 in Civil Engineering

River Walkham Boardwalk and Magpie Viaduct (Structures) The scheme involved four distinct elements, all of which acted as preliminary works to a timber foot/cycle bridge across the Walkham Valley.

This bridge reconnected the old Plymouth to Tavistock railway track at a location one mile north of the Magpie Viaduct, which SWH has recently refurbished. This scheme was completed for Devon County Council.

The elements consisted of a new access and track into the wooded valley off the A386, reshaping a 2200m3 railway embankment, the construction of footings for a board walk and masonry faced abutments for new footbridge over the River Walkham, which...

Shaldon Bridge, Teignmouth

Posted by on May 19, 2011 in Civil Engineering

Shaldon Bridge, Teignmouth (Structures) This contract involved the renewal of Shaldon Bridge (which connects Teignmouth and Shaldon over the River Teign).


It also included demolishing the existing footways and construction of new steel columns.

The original lifting span was of steel and timber construction and was just 6m wide; the new span was fabricated steel section 7m wide plus two footways 1.5m wide and designed to take full HA and HB loadings. As the steel lifting girders were to be maintained along with the original lifting mechanism, the new section had to be of similar weight but strong enough to take the...

Torre Abbey Sands, Phase 3

Posted by on May 13, 2011 in Civil Engineering

Between October 2009 and March 2010, SWH carried out refurbishment works to a 100m section of promenade and steps on Torquay seafront.

The works comprised the cleaning of algae from the existing concrete, scabbling all existing surfaces and installation of dowels, prior to overlaying the existing concrete with 120mm of new fibre reinforced concrete.

The works were located on the main sea front in Torquay, at a location known as Torre Abbey Sands.

The works were within the tidal zone and the various operations had to be carefully planned to make best use of the available 'dry' time. Access was only available from...

Haldon Chalets Improvements

Posted by on May 10, 2011 in Civil Engineering

Haldon Chalets Improvements (Roads and Structures) This complex multi-disciplinary scheme involved the closure of an at-grade crossing on the A380 and the construction of a new intersection, an overbridge and 1km of associated side roads.

All the works were carried out within a SSSI.

A specialist was employed on the site for three months during the construction process to provide ecological supervision relating to protected species including reptiles, badgers and breeding birds.

In addition the existing soil had to be screened to remove any large stones and chalk and re-used to form the new embankments. This approach was required, as opposed to improving material,...