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Site workers pass a 4m reinforcing cage into the top of a column of freshly poured concrete, created using a vibrating mandrill on a browneld site in Derby.

In March Roger Bullivant installed 54 vibrated concrete columns on the £151,000 contract for main contractor B & K Building Services. Installed to a 6m depth, the columns found in stiff mudstone, and were chosen as an alternative to conventional piled foundations.

Lack of onsite storage space ruled out precast concrete piles and ground beams. This also prevented use of augered piles because arisings could neither be stored nor taken away because of traffic disruption to a nearby arterial road.

The vibrated concrete columns will support a steel frame for a three-storey building on the site at Ford Street. Bullivant also constructed stone columns for a new ground slab.

Known as the Friar Gate Studios, the building is due to open this autumn and will house creative industries such film and music production.

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