11/04/2023 @ 6:00 pm – 7:30 pm
Hough End Centre
Mauldeth Road West
Chorlton, Manchester
M21 7SX
Dave Woods

Evening Lecture: Engineering of roads and airfields for military victory with bituminous geomembranes
Speakers: Eugene Gallagher, (Coffey Geotechnics) and Dr Bill Craig,(The University of Manchester)

JOINT MEETING with The Manchester Association of Engineers
Tuesday 11th April 2023

Lecture Start: 18:00 for 18:30

Hough End Centre, Mauldeth Road West,
Chorlton, Manchester M21 7SX


This talk will explore the history of bituminous geomembranes from their origins in the 1930s and subsequent development during World War 11 for the rapid construction of military roads and runways right up to the current day. These materials were manufactured in large quantities in support of the Allied air and land forces and were to play a significant role in the battles of the Burma campaign and in the immediate aftermath of the Normandy landings. In Asia, they were used to create airfields and all-weather roads keeping supply lines open and enabling fast movement of troops, particularly during the monsoon season. In northern France and Belgium in 1944/45, they allowed rapid surfacing of temporary or expedient airfields by sealing the ground and maintaining the existing soil’s bearing capacity, thereby enabling close tactical air support to be maintained with rapidly advancing ground forces. They are currently under consideration for rapid repairs of airfield crater damage.