That Was the Sheet Piling Year That Was
With 2019 coming to a close, Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd has taken a look back at the year, to review exciting and, dare we say, groundbreaking developments that we have brought to certain sectors in particular, and the world of sheet piling in general. Here are the highlights!
We started the year in cracking style, being shortlisted for a Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) Award for ‘Innovation’. This recognised our entrepreneurial approach, which has seen us introducing a unique sheet piling solution to projects including those involving infrastructure widening. The FSB judges perhaps didn’t quite appreciate the phenomenal logistical and financial benefits that our TM 12/15 LR long-reach rig, commissioned through ABI, brings to the world of highways and smart motorways, but it was great to be a finalist at the FSB Northwest event.
We were nominated for our second award for innovation within construction and steel sheet pile installation, when we were shortlisted in the Red Rose Business Awards. February also saw us joining the Steel Piling Group, whose change of structure in 2017 convinced us that we should become a member and help influence best practice within the world of steel sheet piling.
We again demonstrated our desire to support good causes and local community projects, by sponsoring Vicky’s School of Dance, based at the Rochester Dance Junction. This is a dance school that helps make the dreams of ballroom and Latin American dancers, aged 5 to 16, come true, supporting their travels to leading competitions up and down the UK. Dance may seem a long way removed from sheet piling, but helping young people do something fun and interesting, which also develops their talents, is a really positive thing to do, in our view.
We were extremely proud to be recognised by the construction sector and its most prestigious awards – The CN Awards, organised and run by Construction News. We again found ourselves in the ‘Best Innovation’ category, where we were up against nine other entrants, including specific projects and companies with much more clout than ourselves. The very fact that our long-reach vibratory installation rig was even a runner-up for this award proves the benefit that it is bringing to smart motorway projects and other infrastructure widening projects requiring both steel sheet pile installation and the services of a steel sheet pile contractor, shaking up the status quo with a rig that is a world first.
Our long-reach sheet piling rig, the TM 12/15 LR, entered our updated Tracked Plant Technical Specification Brochure, along with our traditional and Giken silent piling rigs, crawler cranes, Movax excavator sheet piling rigs and more. The updated document is available as a download here or hard-copy brochure that we can mail out to enquirers.
After around 6-7 weeks in position, our new HSEQ Adviser, Jim Kampta, was busy at work ensuring health and safety compliance with new Health & Safety Executive (HSE) rules on the control of welding fume, introduced because of its link to cancer and other diseases. Since then, Jim has been developing a new mental health policy for Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd, as we support industry initiatives to support mental health at work – and in the world of sheet piling in particular.
We added a new telescopic crawler crane to our Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd fleet, in the shape of the Sennebogen 673R, taking our fleet’s total of telescopic crawler cranes to three. This crane has already helped reduce the duration of set-up times and increased productivity and flexibility on various sites at which we have been appointed to handle sheet piling works.
Our TM 12/15 LR long reach sheet pile installation rig was busy in service, on smart motorway projects on the M62, M1 and M6. Tier 1 contractors, looking for a steel sheet pile sub-contractor with something unique and financially and operationally beneficial to bring to the infrastructure widening required for all-lanes-running smart motorways, are increasingly turning to Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd. The huge benefits of our long-reach rig are not escaping the notice of these contractors.
Having highlighted how our steel sheet piles can assist Victorian dams, like Toddbrook, which hit the news headlines in the summer, we were heavily involved in a project that is promoting the welfare of eels and helping to protect an endangered species. A project undertaken with partners at Eight20, which involved work on the River Thames, saw us designing and installing a sheet piling ‘fender pile’ solution, at various Thames Water inlets, that protect eel screens. These screens are vital to the welfare of the eels, as they prevent them swimming up the inlets and getting into the pumping stations. The fender piles are essential, as they protect the screens from damage by passing river traffic. To find out why the eels needed our help, read the full story here.
We again added to our fleet, this time investing in a new state-of-the-art, not to mention powerful, vibratory hammer – an MRZV 25VV leader-mounted vibratory hammer, supplied by ABI Equipment Ltd. This is now fitted to a 13/16 telescopic leader rig, which optimises sheet pile driving and sheet pile extraction, taking into account the ground conditions on-site. To find out about all the benefits of this piece of equipment, read the story here.
In November, we made news headlines in many different publications, due to launching a new stand-alone division within Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd, Excavation Support Solutions (ESS). This division exists to provide a one-stop solution for contractors who require a temporary earthworks and steel sheet piling solution and who need a partner to take on board the entire development of the earthworks, from project design through to sheet pile installation. With this ready-to-go solution also providing the huge advantage of health and safety compliance for a contractor, ESS is already proving its worth.
We were delighted to see our employee, James Barnes, showing his commitment to his role at Sheet Piling UK (Ltd) by gaining a First-Class Honours degree in Quantity Surveying, from the University of Salford. Having dedicated and skilled employees, delivering sheet piling expertise to projects across the UK, has been the cornerstone of our success as a business, so it is great to head into 2020 with an employee again highlighting their commitment to professional standards.- Ends -
NOTES TO EDITORS
Sheet Piling (UK) Limited is one of the UK's leading piling contractors. Owning and operating a comprehensive range of specialist piling equipment Sheet Piling (UK) Ltd also carry extensive stocks of new and used piles enabling rapid reaction to any urgent requirements or emergency situations.