Wastewater network ‘fit to fly’ at former RAF base

Drainage engineers from Lanes Group plc have helped a water company survey and upgrade the wastewater network across a former RAF base that is being transformed into a ‘garden village’.

A team from the drainage specialist’s St Neots depot was commissioned by Icosa Water to carry out an extensive programme of investigation, repair, and rehabilitation work at the old RAF Raynham airbase. The 158-acre site, five miles south of Fakenham, in Norfolk, has become a flourishing rural community, with 170 homes and 20 businesses, since the RAF closed the airbase in 1994.

Icosa Water, an independent regulated water company, has been commissioned by the landowners to manage the clean water and wastewater networks across the site, which is earmarked for more homes.

David Palmer, Icosa’s Wastewater Manager, said: “We wanted to get a full understanding of the extent and condition of the whole wastewater network, and carry out any works needed to ensure it was of a serviceable quality.

“The Lanes team members have been very efficient and effective in the way they have gone about their work. They’ve liaised well with our customers and two-way communication with us has been excellent.

“A key element of our plan has been to improve wastewater treatment, so water quality across the site is the highest it has ever been. Lanes’ work to survey and upgrade the pipe system has contributed to that achievement.”

Over a two-month period, Lanes drainage engineers carried out a full programme of work across the West Raynham site, including:

Completing CCTV drainage surveys on 3,250 metres of pipework;

Carrying out 175 manhole inspections;

Desilting 3,250 metres of pipe, using jetting and vacuumation tankers;

Clearing numerous sewer blockages, including root cutting;

Putting in place concrete bag spillway to stabilise a stream bank where a new drainage headwall had been installed;

Installing 38 cure in place pipe (CIPP) structural liners, also known as patch liners, to renew pipes that had cracks, dislodged joints, or were partially-collapsed.

A key element of the project was the surveying and renovation of 480 metres of drainage lines across fields. Arrangements were made with the landowner to do the work after the wheat harvest had been cut.

Over time, eight manhole chambers on the land had become buried. The Lanes teams used a CCTV camera fitted with a sonde transmitter to locate the chambers, and uncover them.

A tracked remote access jet vac reel was used to clean and survey the pipes between each manhole. Several CIPP structural liners were installed to renovate the pipe.

This involved placing a resin-impregnated glass-fibre sleeve – one metre to two metres in length – inside the damaged pipe, inflating it, then waiting the resin to cure, or harden, creating a new pipe-within-a-pipe.

Jonathan Chase, Area Development Manager at St Neots, said: “We’re pleased to have had the chance to support Icosa Water implement its management strategy for West Raynham.

“The project demonstrates a key benefit of working with Lanes. As a full-service drainage specialist we can bring to bear all the expertise and resources needed to complete end-to-end projects like this.”

RAF West Raynham opened as a base for Bomber Command at the start of World War Two.

The hangars have now been turned into a business park, and new amenities, including a pub, a shop, and a children’s nursery have been opened. Its owners have also submitted a planning application to build 94 ‘infill’ homes across the site.

Lanes Group: www.lanesfordrains.co.uk

Pipe lining preserves drains at historical town hall

The drainage system at one of Sheffield’s most iconic buildings has been rehabilitated with an extensive programme of remote structural repairs.

Sheffield City Council commissioned Lanes Group plc to carry out the planned drain maintenance work at the Grade I Listed Sheffield Town Hall.

Drainage engineers from the Lanes Sheffield depot have installed 64 structural liners in pipes beneath the 120-year-old civic building in the centre of the city.

The cure in place pipelining (CIPP) technique, often referred to as patch lining, allows drainage systems to be renewed without the need for extensive excavations.

Arnold Morton, Minor Works Supervisor for Sheffield City Council, said: “The way the Lanes team has gone about its work has been impressive. The town hall is a high-profile building in a prominent city-centre location, so setting the highest standards of health and safety and work-site management has been very important. Lanes has delivered on both.”

The patch lining programme has involved Lanes drainage teams working both inside and outside the building, late in the evening and at night to avoid inconvenience for its users and the general public.

Lanes, the UK’s largest independent drainage specialist, has extensive experience of surveying, repairing, and rehabilitating the drainage systems of historical buildings like Sheffield Town Hall.

David Cheesman, Area Development Manager for the Lanes Sheffield depot, said: “This was one of the largest number of patch liners installed in one go by our depot.

“The process is a highly effective way to rehabilitate drains. A patch liner extends the life of the section of pipe it’s installed in by up to 25 years. Effectively, it’s the equivalent of a new pipe.

“Many of the sections of pipe we were renewing under the town hall were in such hard-to-reach places that this no-dig drain repair solution was the only realistic option.

Pipe Lining “Patch lining is often more cost effective than excavating and replacing drain lines, and can be completed more quickly. In this case, the work was scheduled to take a month, but was completed it in less than three weeks.”

The work at Sheffield Town Hall was carried out by a three-person team, led by CCTV drainage survey engineer Scott Sorsby.

He said: “The work has gone very smoothly, despite the size of the project. We installed up to six patch liners a night, most of them a metre long.

“In some cases, we installed up to five liners sequentially, with each liner overlapping the other, to rehabilitate a longer section of pipe. And in one case we had to traverse the liner 30 metres along the pipe to where it needed to be placed.

“With patch lining, the worksite can be kept small, and can be set up and taken down very quickly. In a live environment, like the town hall, where we were working inside and outside the building, that’s a big advantage.”

Sheffield Town Hall, built over a seven-year period from 1890 to 1897, is the venue for most official meetings, and many civic events, held by Sheffield City Council.

It was designed by architect Edward William Mountford, who went on to design the Old Bailey law courts in London.

The need to rehabilitate the town hall’s drainage system, made up mainly of 150mm-diametre clay pipes, was established by a CCTV drainage survey, also carried out by Lanes Group.

Patch lining is one of a range of CIPP techniques used to rehabilitate sewers and drains.

A flexible glass-reinforced matting liner impregnated with resin is inserted into the pipe, where the resin cures, creating a durable pipe-within-a-pipe.

With CIPP drain rehabilitation, the resin can cure in ambient temperature, as was done with this point lining programme. Or the curing process can be accelerated with hot water or ultra-violet light.

Lanes Group: www.lanesfordrains.co.uk

New abstraction app a “game changer” for water industry

Lanes Utilities has developed an app that promises to revolutionise the way water abstraction is carried out by wastewater companies.

The app pinpoints 130,000 abstraction points across the Thames Water region and key neighbouring areas.

It promises to greatly reduce the risk of illegal water abstraction, support significant improvement in water leak detection, improve the safety and efficiency of wastewater operations, and reduce the cost of policing illegal abstractions. Read more

Lanes in electric car first for sustainable drainage service

Lanes Group plc has taken delivery of its first electric car to support its strategy of delivering sustainable utility wastewater and drainage services.

It now has a BMW i3 to support its front-line teams – with supervising staff using it to visit worksites and attend client meetings.

The electric car, sporting eye-catching Lanes livery, has been contract hired by Lanes Scotland, for use in and around Glasgow. A second car is on order to operate in Edinburgh. Read more

Why water deregulation has left some customers “high and dry” when it comes to basic water maintenance & detection services

SW based water and sewerage repair service business Pipefix is experiencing a steady stream of customers who, since the introduction of deregulation on 1 April 2017, are finding the everyday maintenance services performed by the old water companies including leak detection and repair, step-testing, tank cleaning and valve testing are no longer available. This is because the new retailers set up to sell water directly to customers in a competitive environment do not have any service delivery capability. Read more

Lanes Group wins major Transport for London FM contract

Lanes Group plc has won a contract to provide facilities maintenance services for the London Underground.

The five-year contract, with an option for a three-year extension, is the third maintenance contract awarded by Transport for London (TfL) to Lanes Group in four months.

The contract covers all building maintenance work along underground lines, as well as depots, train crew accommodation, engineering works and power sites. Read more

Lanes Group plc wins 8th prestigious RoSPA Gold Award

Lanes Group plc has is won a RoSPA Gold Health and Safety Award for the 8th year in a row.

The achievement means the UK’s largest independent drainage and wastewater maintenance specialist retains its RoSPA Gold Medal, awarded for achieving multiple consecutive RoSPA Gold Awards.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents annual award scheme, now in its 61styear, is one of the most rigorous and prestigious tests of health and safety in the UK. Read more

Lanes director Andy Brierley wins water industry People Award

Lanes Group Director Andy Brierley has won a national award that recognises people who have made an outstanding contribution to the water utility industry.

He was presented with the Future Water Association People Award at an annual award lunch held in Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, on Thursday 23 February.

The award recognises individuals who have “gone the extra mile” for the benefit of the water utility industry, either through charity work or outstanding service to their organisation or its stakeholders. Read more

AQS Environmental Solutions wins Fleet Transport Award

AQS Environmental Solutions has won a Fleet Transport Award for its work to develop sustainable systems for transporting and managing waste.

It was named the winner in the Environment category, which recognises companies that show excellence in developing responsible and innovative strategies and processes in fleet transport management.

AQS Environmental Solutions, one of Ireland’s leading drainage and wastewater utility specialists, has its headquarters in Thurles, Tipperary, with bases also in Limerick and Cork. Its services are used extensively in the agriculture, food and drink, manufacturing, facilities management, construction and utilities industries.

Stan O’Reilly, Commercial Director for AQS Environmental Solutions, said: “This is a great moment for us. We are very pleased to be recognised for our continuing efforts to develop environmentally-sustainable services.

“A lot of credit must go to our transport manager, John Fahey, and the rest of the operational team, who have been at the forefront of developing business processes that allow us to save energy, minimise vehicle emissions and reduce our carbon footprint to zero.”

The annual Fleet Transport Awards, celebrating their 10th anniversary, are organised by Fleet Transport Magazine, Ireland’s leading commercial vehicle fleet management magazine.

RTE radio & TV personality Marty Whelan presented the awards, while Verona Murphy, President of the Irish Road Haulage Association, was guest speaker at the event attended by 850 representatives from the transport industry.

AQS Environmental Solutions delivers a range of services for industrial, commercial and domestic customers. It also operates a waste processing plant which diverts 40,000 tonnes of waste a year away from landfill, turning it, instead, into compost that is used by farmers within a 20km radius of Thurles.

The composting plant offsets the carbon emissions of our transport fleet and processes the waste locally, which reduces fuel consumption still further.

It contributes to reducing emissions of landfill methane, and creates a useful by-product for the local farming community. This, in turn, reduces their need to bring in fertilising products from out-of-area, creating a second cycle of environmental benefits.

AQS Environmental Solutions has invested €2 million in the last two years in the most fuel-efficient trucks, vans and supporting equipment, all of which reduce pollution and carbon emissions.

The company is now part of Lanes Group plc, the UK’s largest drainage and asset maintenance specialist.

This is allowing it to invest in Europe’s most advanced drainage technology, including recycler jet vac tankers. These significantly reduce consumption of water and fuel during drain cleaning and unblocking operations.

The latest example has been the acquisition of a new €400,000 JHL SuperFlex machine. It has a split tank, allowing water to be filtered and reused multiple times. Waste sludge is then processed in the composting plant.

The Fleet Transport Award was presented during a ceremony at the Citywest Hotel, Dublin, on Thursday 13 October.


Lanes makes sure drainage is fit for exercise revolution

LanesfordrainsDrainage expertise from Lanes Group is helping the development of the latest health trend – getting fit on a budget.

The company is supporting design and build specialist Sivil Group as it works with Pure Gym to open its fitness centres across the south east of England.

Pure Gym is one of the fastest growing health and fitness companies in the UK, thanks to demand for its gyms, which are designed to be low-price and easy-access but high quality. Read more