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River Wall Bristol

Restore Iron Structures

January 2014 – England’s wettest January since records began, brought staggering Spring tides resulting in considerable disruption and widespread flooding and damage to properties along with coastal infrastructure for many coastlines in the South West of England. Movement of the river wall to south of Clarence Road, Redcliff, Bristol was noted after considerable flooding of the River Avon in the area. Craddys, a Bristol City Council approved consultant, were appointed to carry out an initial investigation to determine the mode and mechanism of failure. Following additional gross movement of the footpath in August 2014, Craddys were again called upon to come up with urgent stabilisation measures for the river wall for the section between the Bedminister Bridge Roundabout and Langton Street Bridge (Banana Bridge).


Craddys initial investigation was to determine the cause of movement and to determine if any further damage was likely to occur within the section of the wall. A detailed report was submitted to Bristol City Council, determining the cause of the lateral movement and suggested works/monitoring process for the following months.



Weekly inspection of wall movement, constant monitoring of tidal levels and numerous trial pits along the section of River Wall, were carried out during January 2014 – August 2014. It was found that there was a direct correlation between high tide events and continuing lateral incremental movement. As a result, damage to the footpath had progressively worsened at approximately 75m west of the Banana Bridge and extended circa 50m towards the Bedminster Bridge Roundabout. A remedial proposal was required urgently to prevent further damage to the river wall.



Craddys came up with the solution to anchor and stabilise the wall in its current condition. This was achieved by excavating 17 no. trenches at approximately 3m spacing along the section and subsequently backfilling the trenches with concrete to act as a concrete pier. Anchor rods and patress plates were situated vertically along each trench and cast within the concrete to stabilise the wall. Weepholes were constructed within the wall to reduce hydrostatic pressure during high tide events, further reducing the risk of lateral movement during such events.