Earlier this month Matt Timmins, Construction Manager – West and Wales, hosted students from Imperial College London and the University of Gloucestershire at our 600-acre, £1bn mixed-use regeneration scheme at Glan Llyn in Newport, South Wales. Matt and the project site engineer from Atkins spent time explaining to the students the intricacies of the project and challenges faced with developing the site. The students learnt how through the reclamation and remediation of the 200 acres delivered to-date, we have successfully recycled 485,000 tonnes of scrap metal, 200,000 tonnes of concrete and created 30 acres of green space, resulting in significant betterment to groundwater and the local ecosystem.

Students from Imperial College London visit Glan Llyn, Newport

Dr Martin K Head, Senior Teaching Fellow at Imperial College London, said:

“Every year, a group of post-graduate students studying for their MSc in Environmental Technology here at the Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College London, are taken on a week-long ‘study tour’. The tour is designed to take students to a place in the country, away from London, where they stay locally for a week and are able to visit many sites via a series of half-day site visits. The purpose is to expose the students to sites, or plants, or processes where environmental protection may be of primary concern as a result of the operational processes occurring on those sites. These can be either current or legacy in nature. In this way students are able to experience the issues themselves and gain a greater appreciation of the challenges faced by operators, in terms of legislative controls and technical/engineering solutions arising.

 

“Our visit to the Glan Llyn ex-steelworks site, and also in previous years to the ex-BP oil refinery at Llandarcy, is very important to this particular group of students who have chosen Environmental Analysis and Assessment as their specialist chosen option during their 2nd term. The students are very interested to learn of the legacy issues associated with contamination of land from past processes and operations, and to learn how companies such as your own go about addressing the challenges left behind. The visit to Glan Llyn allows the students to see how the process of land reclamation of a heavily contaminated site is managed and to speak directly to operators to gain more detailed understanding of operational issues.

 

“The feedback from students following our visit their on 14th March 2019 was extremely positive, with all students indicating that they both enjoyed the visit and learned a great deal too. It is in fact an important part of their learning that they will be able to recall later in their chosen careers of environmental consultants, as well as bringing to life some of the theory that they learn about in the taught elements of the course.”

Students from the Unversity of Gloucestershire visit Glan Llyn, Newport

University of Gloucestershire professor, Dr. Liz Hamilton, said:

“A big thank you for recently hosting our students from the University of Gloucestershire, studying Environmental Pollution and Remediation for the M.Sc. in Applied Ecology. It is great to see the site at Glan Llyn brought back into use with consideration for both sustainable development and ecological sensitivity. Matt and John were extremely knowledgeable about the site and could not have been more accommodating.

 

“The site visit has given us a fantastic insight into the work that goes into regenerating and remediating former industrial sites that we would not be able to achieve elsewhere. The knowledge shared by St. Modwen and Atkins during our visit has provided us with real-world experience of the challenges faced when remediating former industrial sites. It has also given us a greater understanding of how those challenges are met by developers.

 

“Building links with practitioners is a key part of enriching the student experience at university. Many of our students go on to use the site visit as a case study of best practice and consider the visit one of the highlights of the module. The opportunity to bridge the gap between teaching, research and practice promotes greater understanding of ecological recovery following remediation. We very much hope to continue our relationship in future.”