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£100 000 spent on the Granite Way

posted 11 Feb 2012, 14:47 by William NB   [ updated 11 Feb 2012, 14:48 ]
The rebuilt wall on the Devon coast to coast route

The replacement 52 metre long retaining wall has just been completed on the ancient path between the Meldon Viaduct and Okehampton which is part of the Devon Coast to Coast route.

The original retaining structure was a gabion wall which was on top of an earlier dry stone wall and sandwiched between Meldon Woods and Meldon Railway Station It’s believed this structure was constructed around 12 years ago as part of the original cyclepath/station construction works.

The material used to build the ‘crib wall’ is made primarily from recycled High Density Polyethylene plastic. This relatively new application of such a material was chosen as the local ground was discovered to be highly acidic. Indeed, some samples tested showed the soil to have a pH level of 3.5, approaching the acidity of stomach acid!  Plastic, however, is very resistant to acid attack making it an ideal substitute to the more traditional construction

In addition to the replacement of the gabion wall, a 10m length of the dry stone wall beneath had to be taken down as it was found to be in very poor condition.  This section of wall was rebuilt in front of and below the crib wall in order to maintain the stone wall appearance rather than increasing the crib wall height.