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Sunday, June 22, 2008

filling a hole

The constant action of the water against the sea walls of Papa Stronsay has caused holes to open up in the concrete, and if nothing is done about it a whole section of wall could fall down. Therefore the community worked yesterday to close up the hole. There were only two periods in the day when the tide was out far enough to enable the work to be carried out, so we had to work swiftly. It was a great success.
The Shutter on the outside of the wall had been set in place while the tide was out in the morning. However the tide was too far in to allow us to put the inside shutter in place, so it had to wait until the late afternoon, when the tide was out once again.

Br. Magdala Maria, C.SS.R. empties bags of cement into the tractor-mounted concrete mixer.

The mixed concrete has to be brought to the wall in wheelbarrows, as the tractor cannot get close enough.

The inner shutter is lowered into position with the JCB…

…and then secured in place by the brothers.

Concrete is poured in the gap between the shuttering.

Br. Wolf Maria, C.SS.R. works on the reinforcing rods.

The fresh concrete is vibrated using this vibrating tool to ensure that it has no air bubbles in it and that it is as compact as possible, to give it maximum strength.

All done. Once the concrete has dried, the shutters can be removed, the hole in the ground covered over and the wall will once again ensure the safety of Papa Stronsay against the never-ending onslaught of the sea.

Our Mother of Perpetual Succour, Star of the Sea,
Pray for us.

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