I live in the city of Worcester, which is as ancient as the river Severn which winds through it. The old city walls date from roman times, the English civil war came through here and the city was bombed during the war. That makes working in groundwork a surprisingly interesting career as a result of the many unusual things that a mini-digger operator can produces from a drainage ditch. I work mini-diggers myself and so of course when it comes to adding drainage ditches to my own home, I wouldn’t be seen dead hiring a groundwork company to do the work for me. Never mind the cost, they wouldn’t do the work anywhere near as well as I could!
Unfortunately, and much to the amusement of my work colleagues, I happened to injure my back slightly just at the time that the groundwork was due to begin for my new extension. Nothing serious but enough to put me of the thought of twisting and turning in a mini-digger for a full day. So, at the insistence of my wife, I hired a Worcester groundwork company to do the work for me.
The day came along, the digger with operator arrived and unloaded, and the foundations were begun. As I critically watched their work from my kitchen window I began to see that the digger operator was looking at something unusual in the ground. They began talking quite excitedly before jumping into the hole to see what had been unearthed. I, of course, was pretty interested too. Having worked as a groundwork digger in Worcester myself for 15 years I knew that Worcester held many interesting objects buried in her soil. What we found may not have been Saxon gold, but it was fascinating none-the-less.
Unearthed before us was an underground concrete bunker, clearly from the 1940s, and heavily fortified. It had obviously been filled in when my current house was built some time in the 1950s. This bunker stretched all the way underneath our tarmac driveway and to within a couple of feet of our back door.
After a little through the course of action was obvious. Today I am the proud owner of a vintage swimming pool with the help of a little restoration work, some lining and a few thousand gallons of water.
Carl Matheson is a blogger who regularly writes about the groundworks industry and life as a mini-digger driver in Worcester.