Housing Development

Hazel Fold, Lostock Lane, Horwich

Situated just a football’s throw-in west of the Toughsheet Stadium, home of Bolton Wanderers FC, Hazel Fold is the site of a former BAE Munitions Factory. We were approached by Bellway Homes to assess the site for a vibro solution, which at first glance seemed unfeasible given the shallow depth to firm clay overlying the mudstone bedrock between 1.50m and 4.00m depth across the site.

Due to extensive previous developments at the site with some areas of deep foundations, as demolition progressed it became evident that extensive earthworks were required to remove all the existing foundations and service runs, and to then provide a suitable development platform.

The variation in the natural geology and the depth of dig meant that foundation solutions were originally split between strip, trench, and piled foundations. With there being a large stockpile of reusable demolition rubble and as the majority of the site was to be turned over, we suggested that the plots should be prepared for a vibro solution.

This enabled existing site materials to be engineered in place for suitable treatment by Vibro Ground Improvement, minimising the off-site removal of demolition materials and reducing the foundation solutions required to just one. Both of which enabled efficient earthworks and simplified the build program for Bellway.

Our first visit to site consisted of installing 2100 columns to depths between 1.80m and 5.00m in just four weeks. The original plot call off was reduced on site as some plots were found to be underlain by rock at less than 1.40m, which enables them to be completed with shallow strip foundations to reduce overall cost. Our final visit was completed at the end of March 2023, totalling nearly 3400 columns across the whole project.

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