Situated within the urban location of Swan Lane, Tipton, West Bromwich the demolition works were critically constrained by adjacent roads, industrial premises, commercial office properties & surrounding neighbours living in residential properties. The directly adjacent site bordering the project held historic interest being listed as part of the local industrial heritage.


The project works were undertaken in an area housing four mineshafts within close proximity to the demolition area, with a local canal adjoining the site. Mindful of these factors, Technical Demolition Services were keen to protect the environment while ensuring our commitment to health & safety of our team remained a priority.

The site had first been used as gas works in 1829, however the MAN waterless gas holder to be demolished had only been in existence for some 60 years, having been constructed in the 1930s before falling into disuse.

Client: TransCo

Contract: Demolition of Gas holder using explosives.

Contract Date: 2003

Contract Value: £ 200,000.00

The project included the complete removal & site clearance of the 275ft structure. All preparation works were undertaken by our TDS team, including the removal of the tar, water seal, removal of the piston by cold cutting, tar pumping & disposal.

Our TDS team of experts advised the client, Transco, that the most effective method of demolition would be by explosives. Our explosives engineering experts undertook the explosive demolition of the structure before processing the arising material at ground level.

Processing works included removal of the timber & asbestos roof structure & recycling of the concrete foundations. Ground works were also undertaken to infill basement excavations & level the site by reusing the recycled crushed concrete that had previously been the foundations.

Explosive demolition provided the safest & the most efficient method which would dramatically reduce the project timescale & Client. Preparatory works included through analysis of the structural

Engineering & involved a test blast to determine the final charge weights, vibration, predicted debris area & respective exclusion zoning, together with air pressure/pressure studies.

Blade explosives were used to swiftly demolish the 1,000 tonnes structure. The resultant arising materials were processed & removed from site within a 14-day period.

Residual tars, tar, water mixture, oils & other hydrocarbons were present both within the structure & below the gas holder. Industrial cleaning of tanks, tar dam, tar seal & tar pump cabins was undertaken using a combination of high-pressure steam cleaning & vacuum suction methods. Using controlled confined space working, the residual tar was mechanically removed by excavator prior to removing residue for disposal.

The fully cleared site was returned to the Client to enable a £5 million regeneration of the area including a 40-bedroom hotel & pub-restaurant complex to be built creating up to 200 jobs in West Bromwich.