As you may pick up from the previous thread i live in cheltenham. I had been doing some planting work near my parental home in Surrey. The clients needed a landscaper to do the longer bits of work - fencing, driving machines etc. I suggested someone i had worked with before and they went ahead and worked with him.
The clients asked this contractor to build a dry stonewall to create a flatter area of lawn. The wall was built in June of last year.
This wall collapsed on Monday after the heavy April rain. The contractor is now saying that the rain was exceptional and the wall needed some drainage which he did not allow for at the time as he could not build the wall to account for the high volumes of rain that we had... He says he will fix it, which will take a week, but wants some money towards the cost of it as these are exceptional circumstances. The client has taken the opposite opinion.
What are your thoughts? Is it the contractors responsibility to fix the wall....and how should things proceed?
I attached a picture of the wall standing and on the floor.
I am obviously involved, being the introducer.
Not if you like dry stone walling and like discussing such things. :)
I have been involved in a lot of retaining walls over the years and can tell you instantly that there is no way that wall would stay stood up. No way...even without heavy rain. Look at the relief of the soil behind it. Its very steep and all the contractor has done is slap a single skin of stone straight onto it. A wall over a metre tall needs footings and needs a layer behind. If i was building a wall like this id cut well back into the slope and concrete block a wall then face with with the walling stone. The concrete component would have a decent poured footing and likely reed bars vertically amongst the block for added strength. All of the support would be in this part of the wall. Behind this id allow for drainage and then backfill with gravel NOT compacting fully with soil.
From the awful rains of 2007 ive even seen well built retaining walls come down. Honestly, a 'wall' like this has no chance at all..it more a rockery than a retaining wall. take a look at any construction drawings for retaining walls and youll see how lacking this is.
Sorry not to have seen this post before. I speak as Secretary of the South West Engalnd Branch of the DSWA and one who walls professionally
From what I can see of the stone in the picture it appears to be facing stone only and much of it trace walled. I would expect to see stones turned length ways into the bank and a much deeper section of wall. When walls like this do go then you should expect to see a mass of rear packing lying over the facing stones which get buried as the wall tips. Don't see this in the photo. Dry stone retaining walls do work and last for many years but are comparatively massive structures. As mentioned above the footings need to be wide and then the stones tied back in a firm bank with consolidated fill. By consolidated I mean hand placed packing not just a poured type 1 fill. The packing/ hearting must 'lock' as the wall settles as well as provide mass. Different styles around the country. Some have double skins with longer stones straight through into the bank whilst others are faced but again stones long ways into the bank. If drainage is a problem then a french drain can be placed behind but being porous the walls will usually drain naturally in any case. Cosmetically in the pictures it looks good but ....... that's not what keeps a wall up. In Dry Stone walling Terms retaining wall come under the advanced skills tab. A list of professional dry stone wallers and their qualifications can be found at www.dswa.org.uk although of course there are other very good wallers who may not appear. They will have a good reputation so ask locally for recommendations - not so easy in an area where dry stone walling is not common. Hope this helps add a little in the way of info. Good book is Dry Stone Walling A Practical Guide BTCV Publications useful if you want to check specs, or have a project to mange
I'm late on this but really ... I can't believe that guy built that. Thats just a skin over some dirt, not a retaining wall! I hope they got the guy to pay someone competent to do the work.
Thats not a wall. Its a bank of soil clad with stones. did the guy arrive on a horse?
I agree with most of the comments on here. It looks very pretty but was just a pile of stones not a wall. A bank that high and with a steep bank in front needed to be a retailing wall. I hope your client can work this out as they shouldnt be paying anymore.
Looks like trace walling to me