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JCB demolition machines move in as Uttoxeter legacy plans move forward

The redevelopment of a former JCB factory site in the centre of Uttoxeter has taken another big leap forwards with work now underway to break up more than 34,000 tonnes of concrete. The Pinfold Street site was home to manufacturing for almost 140 years, firstly for agricultural machinery makers Bamfords Ltd and latterly for JCB Heavy Products, which relocated to a new £40 million facility next to the A50 in Uttoxeter in 2008.

Now a fleet of JCB machines has moved on to the site to break up the concrete bases which the factory stood on and to remove the old foundations which are up to six feet deep. The concrete is up to a foot deep in parts and is being removed and recycled for use on site as part of a 12 week contract awarded to Willenhall-based Dismantling & Engineering Services Ltd.

JCB Chairman Lord Bamford is taking a personal involvement in the plans for the site and instigated a Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) design contest to ensure the redevelopment is of “the highest possible standard” and leaves a legacy for Uttoxeter.

Today he said: “The breaking up of the concrete on the site is a big step forward for the redevelopment project as it will pave the way for the creation of a wonderful park for Uttoxeter and for more than 250 very high quality homes.”

The heavyweight JCB machines tasked with the job are a 36 tonne JS360, 29 tonne JS290 and two 22 tonne JS220 tracked excavators – all made by JCB Heavy Products. One of the JS220 machines is equipped with a heavy-duty JCB HM1570Q Hammermaster breaker.

Dismantling & Engineering Services Ltd was established in 1994 and is one of the leading companies in the West Midlands specialising in demolition and industrial dismantling of all types of buildings and structures.

Managing Director Stewart Harper said: “There is a huge volume of concrete to be broken up over the next 12 weeks but we don’t anticipate any major challenges with the project by the time it is completed in June. The four JCB JS excavators we have on site are very powerful and making easy work of the job we have to do.”

Work has also recently started on a new Waitrose store on an adjoining site after JCB sold around two acres of land formerly occupied by JCB Heavy Products to the supermarket. It is planned that the new 30,000 ft² store – which will have car parking for 180 vehicles – could open in time for Christmas.

London-based McDowell + Benedetti was selected as the winner of the RIBA design competition and drew up plans for the 22-acre site which include housing, retail and commercial. There will be 257 new houses built on the site – including large villas, detached properties and town houses. It will see the course of the brook realigned, the creation of a pond area to encourage more diverse wildlife species, removal of concrete beds and replacement with more natural materials, along with the creation of steep banks to encourage breeding of water voles, the replacement of weirs with riffles and gravel barriers and the creation of shallow depths to encourage aquatic life.

The Bamford family has links with Uttoxeter stretching back nearly 200 years. Lord Bamford’s family started out in business as blacksmiths in the town in the 1820s. To view thr video visit https://res.jcb.com/my-pub/FolderLink/94de64c4-eeec-32f2-d577-68a4824d20ae/false

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