Studley Grange

RSSI Arboriculture Division

Studley Grange, Swindon

“The Arboriculture team completed the vegetation clearance work to a high standard with excellent adherence to standards and paperwork”
Client Project Manager
RSS Infrastructure worked in collaboration with a Network Rail tier 1 contractor to undertake 800m x 15m lineside vegetation clearance to allow embankment stabilisation works to be completed.
RSS Infrastructure | Logo | Auctus Management Group Member


Studley Grange

RSSI Division


Project Leader

Graham Talbot

No. of Staff


Award Value


Project Duration

8 weeks


Before the project, the Arboriculture team conducted a site walkout to establish the scope of works and identify the resource, forestry plant, Overhead Line Equipment requirements as well as site access points, landscape and environmental constraints. The area was to be cleared of all vegetation, which consisted of semi to mature trees and undergrowth. An ecology report was produced to protect any lineside ecology, outline any environmental concerns and sensitive areas. An ecologist with a watching brief was present to ensure all work followed the agreed guidelines.

800m of complete tree clearance was undertaken, with all stumps taken down to 150mm. It was necessary to install stock fencing to reinforce the integrity of the landowners’ boundary, which was completed by the team.

Due to the proximity of the works to the open lines and the Overhead Line Electrification, the in-house planning team identified an appropriate method of working that ensured the works did not encroach onto any of the rail infrastructures. The team utilised an industry approved assisted fell technique consisting of a ground anchored winch and pully system. 360 Excavators with Timber Grabs were used to manoeuvre the trees into a safe location at the top of the embankment for chipping using a Whole Tree Chipper. Exclusion zones were set up around any live adjacent OLE and adhered to at all times. Exclusion zones were set up, so that plant and machinery did not enter the mandated exclusion zone 2.75m (9ft).

We ensured that the ground was clear of slips and trips hazards and left the gradient clear and in line with the requirements for the contractor responsible for the installation of the netting and anchors. The ground was cleared on time and on budget, in line with requirements. Later another contractor was able to stabilise the embankment. The arisings were recycled into Biomass fuel using a subcontractor which ensured 100% utilisation of the waste material.

This method of working meant the project was conducted during mid-week day shifts to increase safety and reduce resource costs without the need for a Possession. This strategy ensured that both RSSI and the client could minimise the impact on the environment, helping to create an infrastructure fit for future generations.

Meet Our Experts
“We have a flexible approach to each project, adapting our services, personnel and plan to satisfy the requirements of each job. All our teams combine safety-critical staff with experienced Arborists and Vegetation Management specialists and can work in a range of different site types.”
Graham Talbot

Head of Arboriculture

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