West Smithfield Tunnel Lids

Dyer & Butler

2021 - 2022


London, EC1A

Location & Overview

The reinforcement of the lids of the cut & cover Snowhill rail tunnel that runs directly under Smithfield, in conjunction with the development of the new Museum of London site at West Smithfield. The project involves extensive temporary works to support the market building while the foundations are transferred to the new tunnel lids.

Work, Challenges & Solutions

The dismantling of the historic façade at Smithfield Market was an integral part of the strengthening of the rail tunnel project to accommodate the new Museum of London.
The project involved sensitive heritage works, including the careful removal and storage of historic wooden frames complete with glazing, bricks, stonework, and a cast iron staircase.
The stairs were retained and carefully stripped down by working from the top down to remove the connection bolts and lift the treads off the central pin. Once removed, the stairs were wrapped and placed inside a container ready for storage offsite.
All brickwork had to be carefully removed by hand, using hammer drills to maximise the number of intact bricks that could then be reused elsewhere.
All complete bricks were numbered, photographed, and logged into sets, then placed on a pallet and wrapped for protection, ready to be taken into storage.