09 July 2011

The Pools Progress

As the Forest Hill Pools are replaced over the next year or so, we’ll hear from members of the team involved in the improvements. This issue we speak to Bill Duke, structural engineer on the Forest Hill Pool’s rebuild

What is your role on the pools project?
I am the structural engineer – which basically means making sure it doesn’t fall down!

What sort of projects do you normally work on?
All sorts of developments including schools, hospitals, factories, retail and leisure projects. This is the fifth pool I’ve done; the last one was the Corby East Midlands International Pool which won a number of awards. It will be an Olympic training venue.

What do you think is the most exciting aspect?
I think any project like this has a major positive impact on the local community and playing a key role is very rewarding

What will be your personal biggest challenge?
As structural engineers we must deliver the design and details to meet the build program and this is always a challenge, particularly on a ‘wet leisure’ type project

How much involvement will you have in the pools project during the construction?
I’ll visit site every two to four weeks and at key steps. Our team will have a heavy involvement in the early stages whilst the building gets off the ground.

What sort of projects are you most interested in?
I’ve done many projects but I find the most challenging are the most rewarding. They are not necessarily ‘high profile’ jobs. I led a team of up to twenty over a two year period in the design and construction of a major factory extension. Contractors worked round the clock to complete it and it was quite invigorating.

Which of the facilities in the new pools complex would you be most likely to use?
Definitely the swimming pool!

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