Yesterday we took advantage of a break in the weather to get involved in a self build project in the Chilterns, near Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire. This project was a bit different though, as it is being featured on Channel 4's "Grand Designs".
We had been asked to give geotechnical advice to the homeowners with regards to shear strength and possible settlement characteristics of the ground beneath their new Passivhaus. A previous site investigation had been undertaken but the geotechnical advice had been ambiguous and other further requirements from the construction company had asked for testing on the proposed formation level. We therefore undertook several undrained shear strength tests and plate load tests to give surety to the building inspector, who was on site at the same time, with regards to the competency of the formation level upon which the raft foundations are to be built on.