The Ainscough team has moved a step closer to finishing its work on the £1.35 billion Queensferry Crossing project after the final lifting operation on the Firth of Forth Bridge took place.”

Built by main contractor FCBC (Forth Crossing Bridge Constructors) for Transport Scotland, the Queensferry Crossing is the longest three-tower, cable-stayed bridge in the world and the largest to feature cables which cross mid-span.”

Ainscough’s final lift on the site comes after three and a half years’ worth of work on the new crossing. Due to open later this year, the new bridge is integral to the economy of the east of Scotland.”

Playing a prominent role at Queensferry Crossing, the UK’s leading lifting solutions company, Ainscough Crane Hire, has lifted a total of 122 deck sections onto the 2,633 metre bridge since October 2014.”

Having a minimum of four cranes per day on the site, Ainscough’s Falkirk depot has helped lift 77,200 tonnes of steel and concrete to the new deck of the bridge.”

Falkirk depot manager, Ciaran McNamee said: “We are very pleased to have been involved in a landmark project such as the Queensferry Crossing. We have had between four to six cranes on the site every day since 2014 and we have watched the bridge evolve month by month.”

“Ainscough has used its skills and strategic planning to help deliver this major piece of infrastructure and after years on the site we are all proud to be delivering this vital piece of infrastructure to the people of Scotland.”


Ainscough has completed the lift of a chiller unit for global integrated healthcare leader, Sanofi, at the life science company’s site in Holmes Chapel.

The UK’s leading lifting solutions company, Ainscough Crane Hire, was appointed by Factory Plant Projects, following a careful review of the lift requirements. Upon review, Ainscough was able to complete the job with a 300 tonne crane rather than a 500 tonne as first thought.

The Ainscough team used a Liebherr LTM 1300-6.2, a 300 tonne all-terrain mobile crane fitted with VarioBase® to lift the 8.2 tonne chiller unit. The VarioBase® technology enabled the crane operator to set the crane’s outriggers on its mats at variable heights and widths set away from surrounding obstacles and the adjacent building.

The chiller unit was then lifted from the north side of Sanofi’s 19 metre tall building off the back of transport, over the roof and onto the south side of the building for its installation.

Ainscough technical lift manager, Dave Baxter said: “Although lift itself was straightforward, the narrow clearances meant that we had to be innovative with our approach. The range of cranes we have at our disposal at Ainscough allows us to be flexible and match the right crane to the right job. Quite literally – one size doesn’t fit all.

“By using a 300 tonne crane with VarioBase® technology rather than a 500 tonne crane, we were able to present our client with a significant saving and the smaller crane meant less disruption to the surrounding area.”

Stuart Hall, contracts estimator at Factory Plant Projects said: “We decided to use Ainscough for this lift as we wanted to ensure that the job was completed in a swift and professional manner.

“The lift was finished on time and without incident and it is a testament to Ainscough’s team that they have been called back for so much repeat business with us over the last few years.”

Ainscough Crane Hire Complete Crossley’s Bridge Lift

Ainscough Crane Hire has completed a series of complex lifts on behalf of infrastructure specialists, Story Contracting Limited, in Blackpool to upgrade Crossley’s Bridge that’s located to the north of the seaside resort’s town centre.

The work is being carried out as part of a wider programme of infrastructure improvements in the area which will see Blackpool’s 10 bridges renovated and upgraded to future-proof them for road traffic. Ainscough’s work on Plymouth Road follows on from a £255 million pound investment by Network Rail to electrify the 17-mile rail route between Preston and Blackpool North Station.

In order to raise the bridge, a team from Ainscough’s Heavy Cranes Division first had to remove a series of beams from the east and west side of the abutments. The existing cills were demolished using breakers, powerful percussion hammers fitted to excavators. The task was made more challenging due to unexpected metal supports in the reinforced concrete.

Ainscough operators were then able to lift the spans, which weighed up to 50 tonnes each, using a Liebherr LTM11000 D, a 1,000 tonne all-terrain mobile crane, a Liebherr LG1550, a 550 tonne lattice boom strut crane and a Liebherr LTM1500-8.1, a 500 tonne all-terrain mobile crane. The spans were loaded onto transport vehicles for removal and new sections of the bridge were installed in their place.

Outlining the lifts, technical contracts manager, Dave Baxter said: “We are always mindful of the need to complete projects in a timely manner, but it’s paramount when operating under a rail possession and an access road that is generally requiring 24 hour access.

“Working through the night in sub-zero temperatures, we were able to carry out a series of lifts that were only possible thanks to the expertise of Story Contracting Limited, our personnel and the quality of the equipment we have at our disposal in the Ainscough fleet.

“The 1,000 tonne crane was ideal for this contract with its rigging and lifting capabilities within confined spaces, the LTM11000 D proves itself time and time again.”

Michael Bell, site manager at Story Contracting Limited, said: “The job went to plan and Ainscough’s work played a vital role in ensuring that the lifts were completed within our time frame. “Ainscough’s service was of a very high standard and it is a testament to their team and their cranes that a complex job was done with ease.”

“Steve Waterworth, national business development manager at Ainscough said: “Ainscough’s commitment to high quality work was again shown at Blackpool Crossley’s Bridge.

“Dave Baxter and his team planned every lift to precision, before completing the job to our usual high standard.”

Reinstatement of the main bridge is due to be completed in time for the Easter holidays [2017].

Ainscough Crane Hire Complete Lifts At Deepham Sewage Treatment Works

Ainscough has completed a series of lifts at Deepham Sewage Treatment Works (STW) in the London borough of Enfield. The works form part of a £250 million rebuild of the facility which is owned and operated by Thames Water and is the company’s fourth-largest works.

The UK’s leading lifting solutions company, Ainscough Crane Hire, was appointed by AMK in a joint venture between contractors AECOM, Murphy and Kier – to lift and relocate more than 200 steel filtration cages.

The metal enclosures house Integrated Fixed-Film Activated Sludge (IFAS) equipment weighed almost eight tonnes. Set inside concrete tanks, the technology uses bacteria as part of the sewage treatment process and is more efficient and environmentally friendly than traditional methods.

Operators from Ainscough’s Heavy Cranes Division completed the lifts using two Liebherr LTM 1500-8.1, 500 tonne all-terrain mobile cranes; one rigged with main boom and 165 tonnes of counterweight and the other with 77 metres rigging luffer and 36.9 metres of main boom.

Deephams is one of Thames Water’s key sewage treatment works in north London and processes more than 209,000 tonnes of sewage on a daily basis. The site is being refurbished to meet new environmental standards to improve the water quality of the adjoining River Lee, reducing odour issues and to allow for future population increases. The improvements will increase the capacity to take account of future development such as Meridian Water.

Business development manager at Ainscough’s Heavy Cranes division, Guy Marchant, said: “We were incredibly pleased to be awarded this contract and that Ainscough’s reputation for handling time-sensitive and logistically challenging projects are a testament to our ability.

“A lot of planning went into the pre-contract discussions and we took the time to understand AMK’s requirements and the constraints under which we needed to operate. Working in one of London’s busiest STWs, our operators had to carry out the lifts with minimal disruption to day-to-day operations, mindful of site traffic. The filtration systems also had to be replaced quickly to avoid the bacteria used in the treatment process from dying, so our team often worked extended hours.

“We were able to complete our work at Deephams a week ahead of schedule and everyone involved in the project, from the sales staff involved at the start, to the drivers and crane operators working on-site, should be commended.”

Ainscough Crane Hire’s Newcastle Depot Delivers Contract Lift

Ainscough Crane Hire’s Newcastle Depot has delivered a three day contract lift at Newcastle University’s Tyne Subsea: National Centre for Subsea and Offshore Engineering, installing a hyperbaric chamber which is used to simulate the pressures of the subsea environment at depths of up to 4,500m.

The lift was part of a six month contract with construction firm Robertson, installing the largest commercially available hyperbaric chamber in the world which provides vital testing, research and development facilities in the North East and for the wider UK subsea community.

Part funded by the North East Local Enterprise Partnership’s North East Investment Fund, the Neptune Test Centre is the first of its kind in the UK and is the first commercial facility of its kind in the world, with only two other similar test facilities are owned by the US and Russian governments.

Using a Liebherr LTM 1250-6.1, the Ainscough team provided a supporting tail lift for the 4.5 metre long, 2.5 metre diameter chamber as it was positioned within the new building.

To position the chamber, a section of roof was removed and the chamber lowered onto its moorings within the building. This meant the crane operator was working ‘blind’ relying on the Ainscough crew inside the building for guidance.

Lee Driver, area sales manager for the North East said: “This was an intricate series of lifts which showed Ainscough’s team working at its very best. The leeway we had through the roof was tight and then the tolerances of chamber’s positioning onto its mooring was down to literally millimetres of clearance.

“It was a special effort by the team from planning through to delivery and we once again delivered for our customer.”

The major investment between BEL Valves (one of British Engines’ engineering businesses) and Newcastle University involves the creation of new teaching facilities, dedicated research and development offices, associated car parking, infrastructure, access road, sewer system, enabling works and landscaping.

Ainscough Crane Hire Complete The Assembly Of Three Wind Turbines

Ainscough Wind Energy Services have completed the assembly of three 59 metre-high MM82 turbines at Dunsland Cross Wind Farm in Devon for leading wind-turbine manufacturer, Senvion.

The installation marks a major milestone for Senvion they now has installed two gigawatts of electricity capacity from 800 turbines in operation across the UK.

Using a Liebherr LTM 1500-8.1, 500 tonne all-terrain mobile crane, configured with a 42.4 metre main boom, a 35 metre luffing fly jib and 165 tonnes counterweight to carry out the lifts which was rigged up with a 100 tonne LTM 1100/2.

The project was expected to take two months but thanks to favourable weather windows and thorough planning the installation was completed in less than 10 days.

Erecting three turbines in less than a fortnight and completing the job well ahead of schedule, Ainscough Wind Energy Services Project Manager, Stephen Davis, said: “We always aim to complete projects for our customers in a timely fashion and with thorough planning that’s often possible. But, as with all of Ainscough Wind Energy Service’s work, we are somewhat at the mercy of the weather when carrying out lifts.

“Safety is always our primary concern and we won’t work in conditions that pose a risk to anyone involved. Fortunately we had some favourable weather windows which with the expertise and experience of the Ainscough operators involved meant that lifts were carried out safely and efficiently.

“This was our ninth project for Senvion in the last twelve months and we’re pleased to continue our longstanding relationship with the company. We’re delighted to help them achieve such an important milestone as they grow their operation in the UK.”

Senvion chief executive, Jürgen Geissinger said: “Reaching 2GW installed capacity and leading UK installation figures demonstrate how Senvion remains a key player in the UK wind market.

“The collaborative, customer-focused approach we adopt ensures Senvion products remain competitive and offer ideal solutions to optimise the range of wind conditions across the UK.”

The Ainscough Crane Hire 40th Anniversary Charity Challenge

Last summer, we challenged the Ainscough team to help us mark our 40th anniversary by encouraging them to take part in a fundraising challenge with the incentive that the company would match their efforts and contribute to our team’s chosen good causes.

Depots and Departments from Aberdeen to Plymouth got involved and held a series of events which included: cycling challenges, mountain walking, endurance running and Christmas jumper events. Some highlights of the fundraising included:

A team of eight from our Bristol, Exeter, Plymouth, and Carmarthen depots scaled three of the highest mountains in Wales to raise funds for Cheltenham-based children’s charity, Winston’s Wish.

Tackling the peaks of Cadair Idris, Snowdon and Pen Y Fan in the autumn, the team were led by hire controller, Darren Loveridge, covered 20 miles and climbed 8,000 feet to raise £2,626. Darren said: “I am very pleased with how much money we have managed to raise for the charity. We had half an idea that we’d exceed our target but we never thought we’d double it.”

A team from our Manchester Depot took to their bikes in memory for a former colleague who unexpectedly died last year, Andrew Willits. Their 40-mile ride from Preston to Manchester raised £295 for the Sepsis Trust.

Also taking to two wheels were a team from the Preston depot who raised £760 cycling from coast-to-coast in aid of Cancer Research UK, whilst QHSE Advisor (South East Region), Gary Dixon, cycled solo from Cambridge to Norwich, covering 80 miles in aid of the Demelza Children’s Hospice in the south east.

Gary, who raised £1,960, said: “Initially I had aimed to raise £500 for Demelza, which is a charity close to my heart.

“Having completed a series of shorter practice rides, I was determined to complete the longer ride and I am very proud of how much we raised.”

Derek Gow, commercial director at Ainscough said: “We challenged each department to take on a fundraising event during our 40th anniversary year. We are very proud of the response we have had, from small scale to major events, our team have joined in to make a difference. Thanks to everyone who got involved, the feedback from participants was that it brought us all together and that we should do more in future.

“The company has matched the funds and a total of £15,746.00 has been raised by the Ainscough team. This fundraising will truly make a real difference to those organisations that rely on ordinary people getting involved and raising much-needed funds.”