Crossrail awards contract to ship excavated material to Wallasea Island

16 December 2011 18:11 - BAM Nuttall Ltd

(Press release Crossrail:) London, 16 December 2011

  • Crossrail awards last remaining contract to enable tunnelling to commence in spring 2012
  • Excavated material will be used to create a new RSPB nature reserve
  • Movement of excavated material by freight train and ship will reduce the impact of Crossrail’s construction on London

Crossrail today awarded the contract to ship excavated material arising from Crossrail’s construction to Wallasea Island, Essex to create a new RSPB nature reserve.

  • C807 – Marine Transportation: Joint Venture comprising BAM Nuttall Ltd / Van Oord UK Ltd

This innovative project aims to combat threats from climate change and coastal flooding by recreating a wetland landscape. It will also help to compensate for the loss of similar tidal habitats elsewhere in England due to rising sea levels. Crossrail will provide around 4.5 million tonnes of excavated material to RSPB generated from the construction of tunnels, shafts and stations.

Andy Mitchell, Crossrail Programme Director, said: ‘We are delighted to be working in partnership with RSPB to create a major new nature reserve that can be enjoyed for generations to come. At least two-thirds of all Crossrail excavated material will be used to create the wetland at Wallasea Island. With the award of the contract to transport excavated material, Crossrail has now awarded the last remaining major contract that will allow tunnelling to commence in spring 2012.’

Crossrail tunnelling will commence at Royal Oak in March with the first ships containing the excavated material arriving at Wallasea Island during summer 2012. The contractor will be responsible for shipping excavated material from Instone Wharf and Barking Riverside in east London and Northfleet, Kent to Wallasea Island.

Up to five ships a day will transport excavated material down the River Thames to Southend–on-Sea. They will then travel north passing Foulness Island before turning west into the River Crouch to reach Wallasea Island. The transfer of excavated material from London and Kent has been planned with the support and assistance of the Port of London Authority and the Crouch Harbour Authority.

Crossrail has also worked with the Crouch Harbour Authority to fund a major improvement to the buoyage in the area to minimise the impact on waterways connecting to Wallasea Island. Navigation buoyage between Whitaker Spit inwards and Burnham Fairway has been increased from 16 to 30 lit buoys. The new larger buoys provide better visibility and increased safety for users of the River Crouch.

Further information: Crossrail Press Office, 020 3229 9552 or e-mail