MOD Larkhill

Location Salisbury, United Kingdom
Services Geotechnical engineering
Sector Residential
Client MOD Larkhill
Imagery ©Cundall and Aerial-Cam 2017

Jim Allen

T +44 (0) 191 213 4557

Located in Salisbury Plain Training Area, the MOD site is the British Army’s largest national training area, which comes with its own complexities due to its proximity to the Stonehenge World Heritage site. As part of the Ministry of Defence Army Basing programme, the Larkhill site was identified to relocate Army units from Germany and provide 540 new homes by 2020.

For several years, the site had been used for live fire training and required a series of UXO (unexploded ordinance) checks and controlled on-site explosions. Once the ground had been stripped, a series of First World War training tunnels and practice trenches were revealed. The tunnels were part of a First World War battlefield, used to train men to fight in (and under) the trenches of France and Belgium. In addition to the mine galleries deep in the chalk, the project discovered over a hundred inscriptions written by soldiers who trained at Larkhill between 1915 and 1918.

In addition to the tunnels, a wealth of prehistoric remains has been discovered, including a Neolithic enclosure some 600 years older than Stonehenge, and 4,000-year-old burials.

Cundall was initially appointed to provide advice to the client and design team on how to gain safe access to the tunnels for archaeologists and UXO specialists, as well as recording 3D scanned data using remote operating vehicles (ROVs).

Cundall’s alternative proposal of using innovative integrated surveying techniques led to a further appointment to devise and manage a phased approach by carrying out geophysical surveys using conductivity and resistivity, along with opening tunnel entrances and laser scanning the tunnels. Cundall will also assist with the development of a strategy for stabilising the ground.

Throughout the project, tunnel data is being obtained in 3D and being combined with other data and information to create a 3D interactive model of the tunnel network. This is under construction and development as the survey progresses.

The team have had to deal with many complexities on site, including over 100 live hand grenades. (A cache of 40 was found in one recently exposed tunnel entrance alone.)

Cundall has worked alongside the project stakeholders, including archaeologists and specialists.

Jim Allen, Partner and Head of Geotechnical Engineering at Cundall said: “Cundall has played an important role in this sensitive and significant project. As well as using innovative surveying techniques to locate and map this previously undocumented network of WW1 tunnels, Cundall has also provided the project archaeologists with safe access into structures undisturbed for the last 100 years. The extensive tunnel remains revealed are testament to the incredible skill and bravery of the miners who constructed them, and soldiers who trained in them before facing the horrors of the western front.”
 

 

Arc Leisure Matlock
Projects

Arc Leisure Matlock

The Arc Leisure Matlock (formerly known as Central Area Leisure Centre, CALC) scheme provides an innovative and exciting new regional sport and leisure facility for local people and visitors to the Peak District.

Read more
Cundall Global Project Guidebook
Knowledge hub

Cundall Global Project Guidebook

Cundall's global project guidebook, detailing our international experience across all sectors and services.

Read more
Image Alt
Blog

What a load of rubbish!

As part of Cundall’s One Planet Company principles we look at various ways we can reduce our impact on the environment, this includes protecting natural habitats, so I decided to organise a team from Cundall to take part in Clean Up Australia day.

Read more
Services

Cundall's engineering consultancy services cover the entire life cycle of any building project. Clients find our ‘total solutions’ approach saves them time, money and effort.

We will add value to your project by opening our minds, exchanging ideas and thinking creatively.

Sectors

Cundall's expertise extends to all major markets, so we have a deep understanding of the specific issues, constraints and opportunities facing our clients' market sectors.

Our team of creative engineers draw on our accumulated knowledge to devise the best possible solutions for your project in a fully integrated and cost-effective way.

About us

Established in the UK 40 years ago, Cundall has developed into an international multi-disciplinary consultancy operating from over 20 locations across the globe.