100 jobs in the pipeline after HS2 contract win

HS2 has awarded Derbyshire-based Stanton Precast a major contract to deliver three ‘green tunnels’ for the high-speed rail project in a move that is set to create up to 100 local jobs.

Four miles worth of tunnel will be built in thousands of sections at the Ilkeston factory before being shipped to site and assembled at three locations in rural Buckinghamshire and Northamptonshire.

The first green tunnel will stretch for one-and-a-half miles past the village of Chipping Warden in Northamptonshire with assembly due to begin on site early next year.

Once complete, the structures will be covered with earth and landscaped to blend in with the surrounding countryside.

For the Chipping Warden tunnel more than 5,020 individual tunnel segments will be produced by Stanton as part of the contract awarded by HS2’s main works contractor, EKFB – a team made up of Eiffage, Kier, Ferrovial and BAM Nuttall. They will work with specialist engineers Matière which has been appointed to install the tunnel segments on site.

The contract win is a major boost for Stanton Precast, which employs around 180 people at its Ilkeston factory and has enabled the firm to increase its workforce by around 50%.

New production sheds, casting and storage areas are also being built at the factory to accommodate the new work. In total Stanton will produce more than 13,290 tunnel segments to form the three green tunnels.

HS2 Ltd’s project client Rohan Perin said: “Our green tunnels are a great example of what we’re doing to blend the new railway into the landscape and protect communities living close to the line. But it is also a major boost for Stanton Precast and their supply chain, showing how HS2 is creating jobs and opportunities across the UK right now.”

Stanton Precast’s MD Colin Richardson said: “We are extremely pleased to be involved in this major project and with the opportunities it delivers for both us and those in our immediate supply chain. Having targeted the HS2 project over 4 years ago as an opportunity to not only grow our business but also provide a legacy for future manufacturing in the East Midlands, this contract delivers on both and is the culmination of a lot of hard work.”