Canal Case Study: Signal Crayfish Damage Repair – Kennet Emcor

Project Brief

To repair a section of bank that has been severely damaged by American Signal crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus). Burrowing crayfish caused a breach in the bank and water was flooding through British Airways owned land and putting nearby property, a SSSI reed bed, and railway line at risk


A soft engineered revetment was constructed and backfilled with gravel rejects and type 1 gravels.

As water slowly percolated through the gravels within the structure, it brought sediment with it which further sealed the bank – repairing the breach whilst also forming a barrier to crayfish.

The small path to site and railway crossing made access particularly taxing. Material was brought in via a British Waterways work barge and fill was lifted into place with the on-board crane. Efficient work practice and a novel approach enabled this potentially complicated project to be completed ahead of schedule