Carnforth comms firm completes challenging Isle of Wight tower installation

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LARS Communications, an industry leader in tower design, fabrication and installation, has completed a challenging tower installation on the Isle of Wight.

The project was carried out in conjunction with Royal Haskoning on behalf of the UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency.

While the tower itself was relatively small, standing at 12.5 metres, the size of the challenge was anything but small, due to its location.

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The tower stands on West High Down, overlooking the famous Needles landmark, meaning access was far from straightforward.

Tower installation work on the isle of Wight.Tower installation work on the isle of Wight.
Tower installation work on the isle of Wight.

Due to the limited access, the 12.5m tower was manufactured in 3m sections and built using a lifting derrick rather than a crane.

The task began with the submission of detailed tower designs, once again carried out by LARS’ design partners, Hampshire-based MFD Communication Infrastructure Limited.

Upon approval of the designs, the tower was made in 3m section in LARS’ in-house fabrication workshop and then transported to the location.

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Before the installation could begin, the existing structure and its foundations were decommissioned and disposed, complying with all environmental regulations.

The installation included the excavation of the grounds to allow for the provision of a new reinforced concrete foundation.

Once in place, the tower was installed, complete with ladder, fall-arrest system and all the plates, bolts, brackets and feeder cable required for the antennas which will be rigged to the tower.

The final requirement was to reinstate the grounds. Given the location and the popularity of the area, it was important that LARS Communications left the area looking as it did when they arrived.

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This meant reinstating turf, seeding grass where required and landscaping (trackway/flooring was laid to protect the grounds as much as possible during the course of the works).

Business development manager Julian Cooper said LARS has developed a reputation for rising to the challenge.

He said: "Quite often a customer will get in touch with us because they know we’re a can-do company. Tower installation is often required in pretty remote spots – and this one on the Isle of Wight was no different.

"On paper it seems simple enough, but once you’ve had access to the location, you soon realise the size of the task facing you.

“However, once again the team has been amazing, delivering the tower on time and on budget, despite all the challenges facing them.”

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