The Eleclink project established a high voltage direct current (HVDC) link between the electricity grids in the UK and France as part of the European Supergrid. The infrastructure includes HVDC cables in one of the running tunnels of the Channel Tunnel, plus AC/DC converter stations and associated high-voltage AC connections to the grid systems installed on the UK and French Eurotunnel sites.
We were awarded the groundworks contract for this unique project by German ground engineering company Zublin, which had secured the Lot 2 contract to install the piling requirements and associated works for the UK converter station. Zublin approached us on the recommendation from a member of their own team who had worked with us previously.
Our work involved importing 25,000m3 6F5 primary Limestone fill from our quarry for piling platforms and, removing 17,000m3 of piling arisings. We also constructed 200m of 3-6m high RC retaining walls, 200m of gabion walls, and approximately 2km of drainage and associated works. In addition, our concrete plant in Ashford supplied 17,000m3 of concrete, including sprayed product, directly to Zublin.
Working inside the Eurotunnel terminal meant we were subject to its site rules and security restrictions, which introduced an additional layer of complexity to everyday operations. Our proactive and forward-looking approach enabled us to manage these challenges and deliver the project successfully.
On completion of works carried out for Zublin we were employed directly by Siemens to undertake and complete the external works.