Wernick Hire are no stranger to large infrastructure projects, having provided units for smart motorway upgrades and an award winning site set up for Crossrail. It made sense, then, that Wernick would be involved in what has been described as the “mother of all infrastructure projects,” HS2.
HS2, or High Speed 2, is, as the name suggests, Britain’s second high speed railway. Designed to connect London, Birmingham, the East Midlands, Leeds and Manchester, construction on the project began in 2017, with the first passengers due to travel in late 2026. Wernick have supplied units on a number of sites, including on Victoria Road in North Acton.
“Wernick were really proactive in the iterating on their designs to ensure we got what we needed,” commented Teslim Akinpeju, site Engineer for CSJV, and the first of the sites Wernick started working on. Teslim added “The price was also very competitive.”
It’s fair to say that HS2 is no run of the mill construction project, and one of its stated aims is to achieve new standards in infrastructure delivery, meaning all contractors involved in the project have to be at the top of their game. As Teslim notes, “It was a learning curve for us all.”
A key aspect of this approach is the increased expectations around health and safety. “There were a number of instances where the client required an extra layer of comfort around operations on site.” commented Wernick Hire’s Major Project Manager Sarah Jones. “That said, these requirements didn’t fall far from our own safety standards at Wernick, so meeting them was relatively straightforward.” This included a larger safety factor for lifting operations and all vehicles needing to be FORS accredited.
Victoria Road could see up to 50 operatives on site at once, and aside from delivering on the welfare requirements, would also need to accommodate them all for daily morning briefings. Wernick supplied the site with a 5 bay AVflex building, which featured toilets, two drying rooms, storage space and a canteen and seating area big enough to accommodate all operatives in the morning.
“The service we received from Wernick has been really good,” Teslim told us. “Staff have worked really closely with us to adapt to the challenges of the site and work through any teething troubles to make sure they meet the expectations of us and our client.”