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At the start of 2021 Walsh signed a 20-year agreement with the Port of Tilbury to help to meet the capital’s demand for construction materials in the most sustainable way. The deal enables Walsh to create two new freight hubs at the port – a logistics terminal with aggregates processing plant and a rail-linked freight facility. Transporting aggregates by river and rail significantly reduces road miles and traffic congestion and represents a fraction of the carbon emissions of road haulage.

Walsh will bring 400,000 tonnes of secondary aggregate into Tilbury by sea and river each year from china clay producer Imerys in Cornwall. This by-product of the china clay industry is rated as one of the most sustainable aggregates available. Combined with transportation by marine freight, it achieves a greener supply chain for built development in London and the South East.

Walsh and the Port of Tilbury have worked together for decades and share a goal to create more sustainable supply chain solutions for customers, particularly in the construction industry, by using the River Thames and expansion of rail freight.


A £400 million residential scheme in East London got off the ground thanks to extensive earthworks by Walsh. Brunel Street Works is a project to build 975 homes in five apartment blocks on former industrial land in London’s Docklands. Working for Galliford Try in partnership with Thames Valley Housing, Walsh has carried out all the excavation work and preparation of the site ready for construction to begin. Part of the development is a 110-room hotel along with commercial spaces which will help to breathe new life into a derelict area. The four-year project is one of the largest and most complex jobs taken on by Walsh, reflecting the ambitions to do more of this type of work.


Teamwork between Walsh and sister company Maen Karne enabled a first shipment of secondary aggregate from Cornwall to be delivered into the South East in the most sustainable way. Port operator Oliver’s Wharf approached Walsh for the supply of ‘stent’ granite, a by-product of the Cornish china clay industry and one of the few to have a BREEAM sustainability rating of ‘excellent’. The two GRS Group businesses worked together to organise handling and freight from Cornwall to Essex for use in local construction. The entire operation was completed in 48 hours. The shipment supplemented the supply of the same material by train into East London – also a GRS venture. Transporting aggregates by sea and rail reduces road miles and traffic congestion as well as carbon emissions.


Walsh’s construction projects team was the lead contractor for the major renovation of an exclusive London residence where legendary ballerina Margot Fonteyn entertained royalty, aristocrats and celebrities in the ‘50s and ‘60s. The 7-story Amberwood House in Knightsbridge – which was once the Panamanian Embassy – was overhauled in a technically challenging project which involved retaining the outer façade and excavating a 3-storey basement. The Projects Team was able to draw on expertise from across the business including securing the right kit for the job, removal and processing of demolition arisings, handling contaminated waste, returning recycled aggregates to site, and using new Frog Island concrete blocks in the reconstruction.


In partnership with BAM Nuttall, Walsh secured the contract to import 250,000m3 of material from a single source to raise the level of land at a site in Gravesend, Kent for a housing. The solution was bringing in material from the Lee Tunnel sewer extension where Walsh was the handler for over 1,000,000 tonnes of chalk and clay arising from the project. More than 90% of the material was delivered by Walsh Marine via the existing jetty and the company managed the processing and placement on site to meet the specification. All testing was carried out in conjunction with an independent certified organisation and regularly presented for review by the client. The first phase of the housing development is well underway by Keepmoat Homes with completion expected in 2025.


Walsh was principal contractor for land-raising works near Tilbury Docks to create a large-scale distribution park for Roxhill and the Port of Tilbury. The key to success was a unique permitting and logistics solution, coupled with the ability to deliver and place 230,000 m3 inert material from directly controlled sources. Due to the location of the 70-acre site, one concern was the delivery of this volume of material by road and the impact on the local transport network. With our own fleet of vehicles, featuring on-board live tracking of loads, as well as a detailed traffic management plan, Walsh ensured materials arrived on site on schedule, while limiting local disruption. The Walsh technical team were in charge of chemical testing for the material, whilst performance testing was carried out by independent certified testers at regular intervals in accordance with the tender requirements.


Walsh were awarded the contract restore the former Bluelands Quarry in Thurrock using half a million cubic metres of inert materials to create London Medway Commercial Park. The development, for client Goodman, needed to be land-raised to take it out of flood plain and unstable substrata also required an element of surcharging. In offering a sustainable single source of material Walsh was able to provide the client large cost savings. The material was readily available and we were able to offer the client certainty of a completion date. A comprehensive traffic management plan was put in place to address concerns raise during the planning stages of the development. All movements to and from the site were directly controlled by an integrated team of our site staff, our logistics and marine teams, which enabled all material deliveries to site ahead of programme.


The delivery and placement of multi-source materials for the growth of DP World’s London Gateway Port was carried out by Walsh as main contractor and project manager. To accommodate future development on the distribution park zones the land needed to be raised by up to 3m to reduce the flood risk. Walsh was able to offer material arising from other projects we controlled to allow the site to be engineered and completed as required. The works also included the demolition of some existing structures and the removal of underground obstruction, remediation of contamination, and construction of new flood water lagoon and drainage trenches. The works were completed to a detailed specification to allow for future settlement and building platform stability.


Walsh were approached by lead consultant Symonds Travers Morgan to take on the role of preferred contractor for works at Ingress Park to fill and re-contour a 30-hectare brownfield site. The site in Greenhithe, Kent had formerly been used as a paper mill, cement plant and marine training college and was being prepared for the construction 1,300 new homes. Walsh was responsible for sourcing and placing of the 300,000m3 of material required to complete the works over a period of eighteen months. We were able to offer the benefit of a single source material from one of our major waste removal contracts. This material was imported to site using our lorry fleet, and placed to the required geotechnical specification. The material was pre-approved for the works and achieved all required compaction criteria to allow the follow-on housing development.

Walsh at a glance

  • 175 dedicated employees
  • 120 FORS Gold trucks
  • 5 tugs & 15 barges
  • 3,000,000 tonnes moved each year