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BDA eNewsletter | Issue: October 2018


Introduction from our Chair – Martyn Brocklesby

It’s been a busy month for the British Drilling Association (BDA), with the recent and very successful seminar on ‘Solutions for the Future of the Geotechnical Industry’, which was held in London, and the BDA’s Dinner Dance and Awards ceremony in Sheffield. As always, the dinner was a fantastic event which gave us the chance to come together and celebrate all that is excellent about our industry.



Thank you to all those that attended, to the companies that sponsored and supported the event and to Keith and Jo Banton for their efforts in ensuring the night was a roaring success.

The Award winners were truly deserving and demonstrate the enormous passion we have for the work we do and its importance as a component of the wider construction industry, which is always advancing in terms of standards, safety and professionalism.

And back by popular demand, we have the dates for next year’s Annual Football Tournament, which this time is being split into two competitions – North and South – to make it even more accessible.


‘Solutions for the Future of the Geotechnical Industry’ – London Event Revie

The London hosting of the BDA’s event, “Solutions for the Future of the Geotechnical Engineering Seminar”, was a tremendous success, with feedback received commenting on the quality of its content, speakers and appropriateness and timeliness of the subject matter.

The event, which was held 9th October at the Thistle Barbican Hotel, kicked off with Tim Chapman, Arup’s Director of Infrastructure, who delivered an informative scene setting view of where the geotechnical industry is at present and what factors will be driving technology in the near future.

With the scene set, several presentations followed, including Rutger van Goethem, of Eijkelkamp/SonicSamp, who spoke about the “Progression in Sonic Drilling & Overcoming Future Limitations” and Jackie Skipper of GCG Ltd, who opened the post coffee-break session with a look at London Ground and the challenges it poses, together with future ideas.

A more detailed overview of the event appears on the BDA website –

A big thank you to all those who spoke, as well as attendees and sponsors, for making it an extremely engaging event.​


BDA Football Tournament – Dates Announced

The BDA is pleased to announce that its 2019 Football Tournament is now open for team entries and by popular demand the event has been split into two dates and two venues – North and South.

The Tournaments will be held 18th May 2019 at Goals Leeds, Redcote Lane, Off Kirkstall Road, Leeds LS4 2AW and 1st June 2019 at Goals Reading, Woodlands Avenue, Woodley, Reading, RG5 3EU. As before, the Tournaments are open to teams from any BDA Member company and will follow a Group element followed by Knockout format for the Group winners and Runners-Up.

It costs just £140 per team to enter; a maximum number of teams is limited to just 16 per venue (based on first come served) so it is important to book as soon as possible. To enter a team, request an entry form, or for more information, please contact: John Grainger, BDA Marketing Chair, via email: John Grainger


BDA – Awards Dinner Review

It was excellent to see so many BDA members at the recent annual BDA Dinner and Awards and I would like to thank also those of you who attended and those who contributed to the fantastic charity raffle. A fun, engaging and entertaining evening, the event also presented the opportunity to recognise success in our own industry too. The winners were:

  • Raeburn Drilling & Geotechnical who took the Industry Excellence Award for its work on the A96/A9 Dualling Schemes. Fugro was highly commended for its work on MTS Shafts and Caverns
  • Socotec who took the Safety Improvement / Initiative Award for its Drill Rig Induction Scheme. Soil Engineering for its Homesafe + People was also highly commended
  • Chris Jones, Fugro, took Lead Driller/Drilling Supervisor of the Year Award. David Strong of Socotec was highly commended, whilst Danny Cundill or Soil Engineering received a special mention as only a few years ago he came through the BDA Apprenticeship scheme and is now one of our top drillers
  • Steve Tomlinson, of Socotec took the Lifetime Achievement Award for his lengthy and outstanding contribution to the British Drilling Industry

This year’s chosen charity was ‘Bluebell Wood’ a great charity that offers care and support to children and young adults with life-shortening and life-threatening conditions, both in their own homes and at its hospice in North Anston, Sheffield. Through the kind generosity of BDA members, we raised an incredible £2700.


BDA Welcomes – Two New Members

The BDA is pleased to announce and welcome the following new members into the Association:

  • Celtic Drilling Limited – a provider of test drilling and boring services
  • U A Antia (UK) Limited – a provider of environmental consulting services

Membership of the BDA is continuing to grow and the addition of both Celtic Drilling and U A Antia (UK) as members of the BDA will help it become an even larger and more inclusive voice of the drilling sector. These two new members will also help the BDA become more fully representative of the sector and better able to champion, on its member’s behalf, the issues and challenges that the sector faces.

The BDA therefore welcomes the additional views and perspective these two new members bring to the table as it widens its knowledge base, which is essential for driving the standards of safety, professionalism and Quality ever higher.


Solutions for the Future of the Geotechnical Industry – Edinburgh Event

With the London event having been a great success, the next BDA seminar “Solutions for the Future of the Geotechnical Industry”, will be held at Dynamic Earth, Holyrood Road, Edinburgh EH8 8AS, on 13th February 2019.

The event will follow the theme of the London event, examining how the geotechnical industry is evolving and like the wider construction sector the impact new technologies are having and will have on shaping its future. Speakers from Arup; Eijkelkamp/SonicSamp; Epiroc; Bentley Software Systems; and Keynetix have already been lined up with topics being released shortly.

Registration will be 12.30pm, with speakers from 1pm – 5.30pm with a 30-minute coffee & networking break, followed at 5:20 by canapés, drinks & further networking opportunities.

Price per person: only £75.00 + VAT BDA Member Company & £100 + VAT non-BDA Members

To book online please visit the BDA website or contact the BDA Office - or 01773 778751.


External Events - Supported by the BDA

The British Drilling Association (BDA) is pleased to be supporting CL:AIRE, the membership organisation committed to providing valuable services for all those involved in sustainable land reuse, by promoting a number of its recently announced “Asbestos in Soil Autumn Training Dates”.


Asbestos Awareness for Soils E-Learning Module – for more info.

CAR-SOIL, being held at various locations; 4th October 2018 – Reading, 7th November 2018 – Manchester, and 4th December 2018 – Nottingham. For more info.

NCE Flood Management 2018 Conference

The BDA is pleased to be partnering New Civil Engineer's Flood Management 2018 Conference, which is being held 21-22 November 2018 at the Bloomsbury Hotel, London.

Now in its 14th year, the Flood Management Forum provides the definitive voice for the industry and provides a unique opportunity to hear the latest guidance and strategy, as well as bringing together the major stakeholders and decision makers to share best practice and innovation in flood management and climate resilience.

BDA Members qualify for a DISCOUNT of 20% - simply quote code PARTNER2018 when making your booking. Details of the event can be found:

Geotechnica 2019

The British Drilling Association (BDA) is supporting Geotechnica 2019 and has secured a 5% discount on all exhibition packages for members wishing to participate.

Geotechnica 2019 is being held 10-11 July 2019, at the Warwickshire Event Centre, nr. Leamington Spa. The event is designed to bring together all areas of the geotechnical industry, from suppliers and manufacturers through contractors to clients. It also brings disparate parts of the geotechnical sector together for a single focussed event, helping to promote the very best specialist services, products and innovations the industry has to offer.

The event is free to attend for visitors, with over 70 exhibition spaces available for companies wishing to communicate, promote, network and learn.

Full event information can be found at; for information on how to obtain the 5% discount when booking your package, please contact

Proud to support NCE Tunnelling Festival 2018

The BDA is delighted to be supporting the New Civil Engineer (NCE) Tunnelling Festival 2018, which is being held 6th December 2018, in London.

The Tunnelling Festival brings together NCE’s Tunnelling Summit and Tunnelling Awards, into a new event for 2018. The interactive Festival will gather the thought-leaders, decision-makers and young engineers from the entire tunnelling community to network and share innovation and best practice across major UK and global tunnelling and underground projects.

For more information and to book your ticket/s, visit

Proud to support Brownfield Redevelopment North Event

A 10% discount is available to BDA members wishing to attend or exhibit at the Brownfield Redevelopment North Event being held 7th November, Leeds at the Park Plaza.
Brownfield Briefing is returning to Leeds with this informative one-day conference, providing updated policy, technical and funding solutions to help reduce the risks and potential costs of brownfield and contaminated land development, increasing investor and developer confidence; and so maximising viability.
Details of the event can be found:
To qualify for your 10% DISCOUNT off the standard delegate or exhibitor rate use code BDA10 and email or call their sales team on +44 (0)203 637 2191.


And finally…

We Need Your Safety Alerts!

If you have any safety alerts, please email them directly to the BDA Secretariat –


Also, if you’d like to see any topics addressed in future BDA newsletters, please don’t hesitate to let the team know –

And please don’t forget to follow the BDA on LinkedIn – British Drilling Association and Twitter - @britishdrilling

British Drilling Association  

Committed to Improving Standards in Health & Safety, Quality of Workmanship and Technical Proficiency for the Benefit of the Drilling Industry and its Clients.

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