Tales of the (eroding) riverbank!

Time has taken its toll on a 50 metre section of old timber retaining wall along the edge of the river Thames and to prevent further erosion of the foreshore the wall now needs to be replaced.

Clarkebond has been appointed to carry out a ground investigation around the failing structure, to design a suitable replacement and to prepare a construction tender package for the works.  The section of river bank concerned is located downstream from Cannon Street Railway Bridge, close to London Bridge and a stone’s throw away from the prestigious Watermark Place office development, owned jointly by Oxford Properties and Union Investment.

The Clarkebond project team is working closely with the Port of London Authority, the Environment Agency, The Marine Management Organisation and, because of the proximity of Cannon St station, Network Rail, to gain all relevant approvals and to ensure all necessary requirements are met.

The photo shows the site investigation, being carried out with the eroded foreshore area in the foreground.*

In order for the site investigation to take place, a drilling platform was welded to the side of a barge which had been towed out into the river and anchored in place.   Drilling apparatus was craned onto the platform allowing a bore hole to be driven into the river bed.  The investigation will provide vital information for the design of the replacement structure.  It is intended that the old timber retaining walls will be replaced by sheet piled walls and then the eroded foreshore will be filled to create a level surface once more.

*Formerly used as a ‘campshed’ for mooring barges on the Thames, the foreshore area is now open to the public as a pedestrian walkway. A ‘campshed’ was a sort of shelf built like a wooden or iron box filled with gravel, stones and mud which projected about 30 feet from the shore. The campshed allowed the barges to move onto it at high tide and then sit upright above the water as the tide dropped.

Engineers: Clarkebond
Client: Oxford Properties and Union Investment