We are delighted to have completed the construction of the new canal steps which were opened for public use on Monday 5 March 2021. The new steps, which lead to the canal from Deepcut Bridge Road, have improved access to the canal and have an integrated bicycle rail which will help promote leisure and commuter cycle use of the towpath.
Working next to the canal, within a Site of Special Scientific Interest, posed many challenges. The canal is rich with wildlife and we had very stringent procedures to work around the canal, including environmental containment systems to prevent any contamination. To mitigate the risk, further precast concrete stair-units were used instead of using in-situ concrete.
A major logistical challenge for this work was to find a way to get the excavator onto the towpath to excavate and remove the old steps. The safest and most practical way was to engage a local Canal transportation company to deliver the 3.5 tonne excavator on a barge via Frimley Lock down to Deepcut Bridge Road.
This work was completed over a 17-week period and was carried out as part of the Section 106 planning obligations for the Mindenhurst development.