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The grout stuff


I applaud the ICE president's first Spirit of Telford award to Professor David Hight (NCE last week). However, I wish to correct the assumption that Hight was responsible for introducing the concept of, and coining the name, compensation grouting. History informs us otherwise.

The origin of displacement grouting to move surface structures can be traced back to its use in highway maintenance by the Iowa Highway Department in the US.

In 1930, the mud-grouting method of raising and rebedding pavement slabs that had settled was invented and developed commercially by John Poulter.

The term 'compensation', in relation to displacement grouting for controlled structural movement, was used rst in Germany in 1953 when Pleithner and Bernatzik reported on the injection of small volumes of cement grout to hydrofracture the ground in order to raise the foundation of a coking plant furnace in Essen.

The pioneer of concurrent compensation grouting was Dr Wally Baker of Hayward Baker, although the subject was called 'compaction grouting' at the time in the US. It was rst used at the Bolton Subway tunnels in Baltimore, Maryland, between 1977 and 1980.

The rst signicant application of compensation grouting in the UK was a trial beneath a steel portal warehouse and a separate brick basement at Redcross Way, Southwark in 1992, in advance of the construction of the Jubilee Line Extension Project.

Stuart Littlejohn, emeritus professor of civil engineering, University of Bradford, gsliitlejohn@ntlworld. com

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