Peninsula Pollution?

P and his mates down the pub have been putting on their conspiracy hats…

“I heard a rumour at the pub the other evening… when talk slid along (as it does) to cover various disjointed yet weighty topics, we entered a residential/environmental phase of the discussion. At which point, one of the group asserted that the B&Q on the Peninsula was having problems with pollution leaching up from underneath.

To support this, they referred to the slightly buckling pavement in front of it. This hardly speaks to a “nice” aspect of Greenwich… but I’m certainly interested to know if it’s true or not. I wonder if this is something you might throw out to your wider readership to confirm/deny?”

The Phantom is largely unconvinced. Certainly it all sits on top of a load of ex-industrial nastiness and there is only a ‘cap’ on top of it, but I would really assume (or maybe I should say ‘hope’) that it’s pretty thick (the peninsula doesn’t seem to be any higher than anywhere else but it is build on marshland, so maybe it all evens out.) Those giant retail sheds can’t have much in the way of foundations; I would have thought that the pollution just couldn’t get through there.

I suspect the buckling of the pavement is just down to bad building – and very annoying it is too, if you’re trying to push an already recalcitrant trolley along it. Blackheath Bugle went over just now to see what all the fuss is about and took some pics of the pavement, which Blogger won’t let me upload. Grrr. BB asked in B&Q what was going on with the pavement:

“I asked the cashier about the paving outside, and he said that it was about to be renovated, but he didn’t say why. It’s not just B&Q -all the paving next to the shops there is wonky, and also the tarmacby the bus stops has warped leaving large puddles next to the seats.”

Now, If you’d asked me about the high-rise flats I might be a tiny little more concerned. They must have to have quite deep foundations and I can’t see that the ‘cap’ can be very thick underneath them. But I’m no engineer and my physics sucks. Maybe someone else here has more of a grasp than me (not hard…)

I wouldn’t put it beyond being true. I have an engineer friend who was brought in as an expert on a project up north which was going to build houses on an ex-landfill site that had been landscaped. He refused to sign it off because he was concerned of methane leaks and shifting soil as stuff decomposed, and got sacked from the project. Another ‘expert’ was brought in to rubber-stamp it. If there is something nasty going on there, then I doubt anyone in charge is keen to advertise it, but in the case of B&Q at least, I think we’re pretty safe.

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