Jesus Lane Dig Proves Tricky For Anglian Water

jesus_lane17:54 Thursday 24th January 2013
Drive BBC Radio Cambridgeshire

[C]HRIS MANN: The major sewer works in central Cambridge beneath Jesus Lane have had to be temporarily suspended, but Anglian Water still expect the project to be completed in the scheduled twelve weeks, as Anthony Innes explained to me earlier. (TAPE)
ANTHONY INNES: I’d just like to assure people that we haven’t stopped altogether, but practical work, with people digging in the hole, has been temporarily suspended, due to unforeseen circumstances beneath the ground, which meant we needed to step back and have another look at how we carry out this job.
CHRIS MANN: I imagine the recent freezing temperatures haven’t exactly helped your effort.
ANTHONY INNES: Absolutely not. We’ve been doing all we can during this time, and we’ve made reasonable progress, considering the conditions out there. We’ve already dug down two metres, which is when we discovered the nearby problem which is making us have this rethink. The problem that we’ve come up against is that we knew there was a nearby quite substantial twelve inch water main. But what we didn’t know of, and what didn’t show up on maps, was that there are several concrete blocks, or plinths, that are supporting this main. These blocks themselves are in the way of what’s called the shuttering, the supports that we need when we dig a hole eight metres deep to repair the sewer. So we’ve taken the opportunity, while the cold weather is slowing progress anyway, to take a step back, have a look at how we can best continue, and make sure we still meet the twelve week deadline we set.
CHRIS MANN: Are you confident of that?
ANTHONY INNES: At this stage we still are confident that we can meet that deadline. As I say, we are just taking a temporary step back, to look at how best to continue, full speed ahead, and to get round this problem. As I’m sure listeners can appreciate, when you’re digging a hole eight metres deep to get to the sewer in Cambridge, we do need to do everything we can to make sure the hole doesn’t collapse in on itself, as it is a very long way down. (LIVE)
CHRIS MANN: Anthony Innes there, from Anglian Water.