Monday, 16 November 2009

Cowboy gasworks leave Shepherd's Bush Green in mess

Skanska Cowboys HighwayI confidently predict that it will be less than a couple of weeks before someone, most likely someone elderly or otherwise vulnerable, breaks an ankle on the absolute mess that the Skanska gasworks have left on our Green.

Since erecting their Camp Bastion, which has now been there for approaching six months, they have dug up various parts of the Green and now the surrounding roads in order to replace piping. Fair enough that it needs to be done, although not really fair enough that it has proceeded at such a snail's pace.

But the state that they have seen fit to leave much of the pathways in having filled the holes and tarmac'd them over is a complete disgrace. I could have done better.

Every new line of tarmac is now sunken into the Green where it has obviously been done on the cheap presenting a sort of mini hidden trench, just waiting for someone to catch their foot in. And when it rains, as these pics below show, you get mini lakes where the cowboys have done similarly dodgy work.

They obviously think this is something they are going to get away with because they've taken all the fencing down and declared the jobs done. I wonder whether our Council, fresh from having spent more of our money hoisting yet more propaganda signs all the way up Uxbridge Road, is planning to do anything about it? Somehow I doubt this will feature in H&F News.

UPDATE 12 NOON: 16 NOVEMBER: Cllr Nick Botterill, Deputy Leader of the Council and Lead member for the Environment, has responded to this post by describing the works as not "at all adequate". His response is as follows:

"Notwithstanding the whole of the Green is due to be upgraded within months, I do not believe that this is at all adequate even as a temporary measure. I will check what is happening although I think there may be yet further utility works to be completed on the same site. The aim is to get all utility works done before the upgrade works".

Credit to Cllr Botterill for responding so quickly, we await developments with interest. Hopefully Skanska will get their bottoms kicked before someone suffers a fall. More updates to follow..

UPDATE 1300: 18 NOVEMBER: We appear to have a resolution. I've just received this statement from the Council, who in fairness to them and Cllr Botterill in particular, have been very quick to respond to this post and actually do something to sort the mess out. So credit where it's due. The statement, with some comments from me in brackets, is as follows:

The site has been inspected together with National Grid at which the state of the Green has been highlighted and National Grid has taken responsibility for this.

National Grid is to take steps to make the area safe by instituting temporary reinstatement. [I think this means putting the fences back]. When the works are completed a general snagging process will ensure that surfaces are put back in their original condition by the end of the month. [I don't know what a snagging process is but restoring the surfaces is what we want so that's good] Inspectors will monitor the site until this process is complete. [perfect]



  1. [...] are, of course, the equally professional guardians of Shepherd’s Bush Green at the [...]

  2. [...] dangerous mess the gasworks left our Green in by using cowboy building work on the paths. Read the full story here, and scroll [...]

  3. It seems that a lot of contractors seemto feel that it is up to the council to "tidy up" after them, if the mess in Macfarlane Rd is any thing to go by. I have reported it to the cleaner.greener email address but there seems to be some difficulty in addressing the issue and I do sympathise on this occasion with the council in as much as why should they fork out to clear up after the contractors?
    I have pictures but no clue how to include them here, sorry!

  4. [...] year about the state of Shepherd’s Bush Green – and within about 24 hours he’d knocked heads together and got things sorted out. So credit to him again for that and best of luck for this. Possibly related posts: (automatically [...]

  5. [...] Nick Botterill. Personally I have a high regards for how he tends to get things done, like here and here. I doubt he’ll be as effective after the axe has fallen [...]

  6. [...] have a high esteem for Cllr Botterill as he actually gets things done – he was after all the saviour of Shepherd’s Bush Green from the cowboys that dug it up and left it in a right old [...]