Discovery of Unrecorded Bell Pits Continues to Generate Interest

It is safe to say that no two days are ever the same when it comes to ground investigations, and our field-based teams have plenty of tales to tell of unusual and interesting discoveries while working on client development projects!

This was most certainly the case back in 2020 when Russell Hurcombe (Senior Geologist) and Andrew Brown (Principal Geotechnical Engineer) discovered over 300 previously unrecorded closely spaced bell pits covering approximately 10% of a development site in Leicestershire. The initial priority was to identify and deliver the best land remediation strategy for the client, thereby allowing the development to proceed and the commercial return to be maximised.

However, Andrew and Russell also recognised the scientific importance of the discovery and the challenges it presented to traditional industry best practice. They therefore decided to write-up their findings as a case study for peer review and publication. The paper was accepted by the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining, and was subsequently presented at their Mining Technology Division conference in November 2021.

Interest in the findings and research has continued over the past few years, with Andrew presenting the case study again this week to the Midland Geotechnical Society at the University of Birmingham (for which he received a lovely Guest Speaker tankard!). Andrew has also been invited to present the work to the Engineering Group of the Geological Society (EGGS) at Burlington House in London on 30th January.

If you have any development or construction projects, especially where there is the risk of recorded or unrecorded mine workings, then please get in touch to find out how we can help save both time and costs. Please use your main point of contact at GRM or for new enquiries email or call 01283 551249.