Devonshire Homes has been committed to building high quality new homes across the West Country for more than thirty years. As a wholly owned subsidiary of London and Devonshire Trust, they have built over 1500 new homes and created over thirty new communities. One such development at Gwallon Keas, St Austell, is built on clay laden soil and they encountered a common problem facing new build developers. During construction, the use of heavy machinery can unavoidably cause compaction panning in areas designated to be the gardens of new houses. Even with land drainage installed and soil ripped, the compaction can reach such a depth normal treatment will not relieve it and provide the natural drainage needed. Consequently, with seven gardens of the new houses, severe waterlogging was occurring. To rectify it, they were given what they called ‘some silly quotes’ with no guarantee the solutions would work. A ground works contractor recommended compaction specialists Terrain Aeration and Devonshire Homes decided to proceed with them. However, there was just one further problem, how to get the Terrain Aeration’s Tracker Terralift machine, compressor and aggregate backfill material into the gardens with limited access.
The solution was a crane presented itself with the arrival of a crane to lift bags of topsoil into the gardens. Whilst Terrain Aeration has had machines lifted before, they have never been this high. The fences between the seven gardens had been taken down, so the Tracker Terralift could move along the gardens to do its work. This comprises the machine’s JCB road hammer and probe driving down to a depth of one metre. At this depth, a blast of compressed air is released to a maximum of 20Bar (280psi). This has the effect of fracturing the compacted soil and creating fissures. The treatment is worked on a grid system at two metre spacings so the fissures interlink. As the probe withdraws, dried seaweed is injected which expands when it rains and keeps the fissure open to allow normal drainage. The probe holes are then backfilled with aggregate It is a solution Terrain Aeration has specialised in for over thirty years, treating areas ranging from back gardens to sports pitches, golf courses, bowling greens, race courses, parks, trees and public spaces. For Devonshire Homes, it provided a timely solution, albeit one which, on this occasion, needed a crane to carry it out.
Terrain Aeration 01449 673783 www.terrainaeration.co.uk