Gibside SEN School, Gateshead


Project Description

Scope of Works 364No. holes
900 Tonne Grout
Contractor Wates Construction
Equipment Klemm 806
Boart Drilling Rig
Bespoke Grout Batching Equipment
Construction period 28th October 2019 -17th December 2019

Aarsleff Ground Engineering carried out drilling and grouting
operations for the construction of a state-of-the-art special
needs primary school in Saltwell. Located on the Shipcote Playing
Field on Avenue Road, the new single-storey school building will
cater for 170 key stage 1 and 2 pupils aged from 3 to 11 years.
The school will feature secure external play facilities, a sensory
courtyard, a hydrotherapy treatment pool and a multi-use games


On behalf of Wates Construction and Gateshead Council, Aarsleff
were awarded the scheme in mid-October 2019, commencing on
site on the 28th October and demobilising on the 17th December


Holes for drilling and grouting were spaced on a 4.25m staggered
square grid, of which Aarsleff drilled 364 No. holes and mixed
and injected 900 Tonnes of grout. 5% of the total number of holes
drilled on the site were pressure tested and 4No. grout cubes
were taken per day to ensure compliance. The required grout
strength was in the order of 0.7 – 1N/mm2


Aarsleff deployed its Klemm 806, Boart drilling rig and bespoke
grout batching equipment for the works, which were completed
in December.


In the planning phase of the development, a desk study and
subsequent site investigation were carried out which indicated
the site was located on an overburden of soft clay between
depths of 1.9m and 4.0m. Following the clay, there were
consistent interbedded layers of Sandstone/Mudstone with
rockhead ranging between 12.0m and 18.3m. Boreholes indicated
that the majority of the site was Broken Ground/Soft with some
boreholes still showing solid coal; the average thickness of the
worked seam showed to be 2.6m at a depth of roughly 18m.


Aarsleff’s Graduate Civil Engineer Liam Trick said:

“It was a challenging project due to the adverse weather
conditions having an impact on our production and deliveries.
The heavy rainfall caused a lot of standing water which in effect
caused parts of the site to be deemed completely inaccessible.
We utilised our own excavator in order to reduce the impact
the telehandler would have had at leaving large ruts around the
site. Under the conditions we were tasked with, the team on
site performed excellently without any problems. Wates held a
daily co-ordination meeting with all contractors involved to plan
a sequence of works for the next day to ensure that safety and
production was maximised. We used a silo allowing us to use
blown cement instead of bagged cement which in turn reduced
the cement dust produced and also increased the production
rate. This method was very effective and will be used in future
projects where applicable. Wates also commented on how the
site lads worked very well under the conditions they were faced
with which is always nice to hear.”


It is hoped that the school will be ready to welcome pupils and
staff in early 2021.

Case Study

A leading UK ground engineering specialist, focusing on multi-discipline excellence and value engineering. We design and deliver some of the UK’s largest ground engineering projects.

Our vision is to bring confidence to those constructing the landscape of tomorrow .

1947. Central Jutland, Denmark. Per Aarsleff borrowed 10,000 Danish Kroner from his father’s life insurance, bought an excavator, and founded Northern Europe’s leading contracting company.

Our biggest asset, our team is composed of the leading experts in ground engineering. Working with collaboration and cohesion at the core of our business, we can guarantee a quick and founded answer to all your questions.

We recruit and reward our people based on our ‘Step into the Blue’ company culture, where we embrace the core values of Life and Health, Trust, and Responsibility.

We do everything to ensure our team and yours work safely on our sites. With our core value of Life & Health, we see safety as a cultural pillar.

Our ISO accreditations are an assurance to you that we take governance seriously. Read our policies to discover more.

The projects that keep society running. Bridges, buildings, transit and rail facilities, embankment support, marine and offshore facilities, mines, airports, and water projects.

Keeping things turning. Sewage Treatment Works, Waste Water Treatment Works, Wind Farms and Wind Turbines, Biomass Plants, and Power stations.

Meeting society’s needs. Nursing and care homes, MOD buildings, Schools and Universities, and small or large-sized residential developments.

Staying on the move. Remediation, bridges, and foundation work are integral to keeping the industry running smoothly.

The landscape of the marketplace. Mega-retail sheds, distribution warehouses, University accommodation, and major supermarket and household name units.

Keeping things afloat. Ports and harbours, coastal defences, river embankments and inland waterways.

Technically trained estimators and a dedicated, in-house design team means we consider value-engineering at every stage of your project.

More than just a model, Visual Design & Construction is a tool to encourage collaboration and improve quality across all facets of a scheme.

From large commercial sheds to small residential plots, piling could be the foundation solution you need to support your project.

Issues around collapse, slipping or erosion? Our experts in retaining solutions have a broad portfolio of techniques designed to fix even the most nuanced of sites.

Tricky ground conditions or requirements? Aarsleff’s ground engineering team work on stabilisation through a varied range of techniques, bespoke to the properties of your site ground.

Our plant workshop offers a range of services designed to ensure your plant works for you. Whether it’s manufacturing and fabrication of equipment for long-term needs or hire so you can complete something specific.