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Supporters state the case

'Geotechnical engineering plays a key role in civil engineering, the extractive industries and in preserving and enhancing the environment. There can be no question that there is an urgent need for a single dynamic, democratic body to provide a technical, professional and educational focus for geotechnical matters in the UK and which is open to all interested persons. Such a body would act as a facilitator to support and strengthen existing groups within the UK. The ICE, with its local associations, regions and associated societies is the logical base for the body. I urge you to vote for such a unified body.'

John Burland, professor of soil mechanics, Imperial College, chairman of Vision Group

'Establishing a single body will make administration more efficient and enable the Committee and its Officers to represent the views of the geotechnical community much more effectively.'

Neil Smith, director, Applied Geotechnical Engineering, honorary secretary and acting deputy chairman BGS

'I am very pleased that at last, what always made sense seems achievable. I very much hope that the membership takes the broader view and gives the merger its support.'

Hugh St John, director GCG, past chairman of BGS

'I look forward to the merger being completed and to BGA becoming a focus for the whole geotechnical community.'

Neil Buchanan, chairman ICE Ground Board

'Formation of the BGA would end a needless period of fragmentation in geotechnics that is out of line with post Latham and Egan thinking.'

John Findlay, director of engineering, Balfour Beatty Specialised Holdings Division

'The merger makes a lot of sense and will strengthen the ground engineering community.'

Bill Rankin, divisional director, Mott MacDonald, immediate past chairman AGS

'As a long-standing member of both ICE (from student member in 1964) and BGS (31 years), I fully endorse the proposed unification. I am convinced this will be to the benefit of all geotechnical engineers and commend it to the membership. Please use your vote to say yes.'

John Talbot, honorary treasurer BGS

'This will close out the first 50 years and put us all on a sounder footing. The new arrangement will give us greater cohesion.'

Bill Craig, University of Manchester, immediate past chairman BGS

'Geotechnical engineering, which is pervasive throughout the natural and built environment industries, is supported both nationally and regionally by an enthusiastic community from a variety of engineering and non-engineering backgrounds. The initiative taken by ICE and BGS should enhance the status of this community and provide greater support.'

Barry Clarke, professor of geotechnical engineering at Newcastle University, member of Vision Group

'The merger would give the leadership of our profession the clarity and focus needed to meet successfully the challenges of a maturing discipline.'

William Powrie, professor of geotechnical engineering, Southampton University

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