HS2 celebrates tunnelling breakthrough - CILT(UK)
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HS2 celebrates tunnelling breakthrough

26 July 2022/Categories: Rail


Massive Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) in Warwickshire becomes first on the HS2 project to complete its full journey underground.HS2 celebrates historic first tunnelling breakthrough: HS2's first TBM breakthrough

The first bore of the one-mile tunnel under Long Itchington Wood has been dug in seven months.

HS2 celebrates the tunnelling breakthrough on one of Europe’s largest infrastructure project.

A 2,000-tonne TBM named ‘Dorothy’ – after Dorothy Hodgkin, who in 1964 became the first British woman to win the Nobel Prize in Chemistry – has completed its one-mile dig under Long Itchington Wood in Warwickshire.

The giant 125m long TBM, which started its journey at the tunnel’s North Portal in December 2021, broke through the wall of the reception box at the South Portal site on Friday 22 July. Nearly 400 people working for HS2’s main works civils contractor Balfour Beatty VINCI (BBV JV) have delivered this important milestone on the HS2 project.

The expert tunnelling team have been working around the clock in shifts for seven months to operate the TBM, which has put 790 concrete rings in place, with each ring made from eight two-metre-long segments.

Mark Thurston, CEO at HS2 said:

“This is a historic moment for the HS2 project, and I’d like to congratulate everyone involved in delivering it. The 400-strong team, including tunnelling engineers, TBM operators and the construction workers at both portal sites, have pulled out all the stops to achieve this fantastic milestone."

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