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Ulley Dam Spillway Wall Failure


In the small hours of the morning Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council requested the evacuation of areas downstream of Ulley Dam and the closure of the M1 motorway because of fears about the safety of the dam.  The danger arose because of the failure of the masonry walls of one of the original dam spillways during a 1 in 200 year flood event in 2007.

Scope of Works

J N Bentley, framework contractors for Yorkshire Water were employed to repair the damage to the Ulley Dam, filling the eroded hole, blocking the spillway with stone, before permanently closing it off with a concrete wall.  A detailed plan for the reconstruction of the main spillway was subsequently approved.


WM Plant Hire were employed to assist the repair of the dam embankment and fill the hole in the downstream shoulder of the dam with stone.  The 20m long reach weighing 60 tonnes was selected for its high production and mobilised at short notice to effectively 'plug' the hole in the dam to ensure the dam structure was not compromised; and repair the outer section of the dam.  The swift action and our experienced operator contributed to the success of the emergency operation and allowed action to be taken at a safer distance using long reach equipment. 


Additional Info

  • Client: J N Bentley Ltd (framework contractor Yorkshire Water)
  • Duration: 2 weeks
  • Location: Rotherham, Yorkshire
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