Marsh Farm Redevelopment, Luton

The demolition of the Purley Centre in Marsh Farm, Luton is part of a major regeneration of the area.

The Marsh Farm Redevelopment project was a residential shopping precinct was being demolished as part of a major regeneration of the area. The estate is infamous in the area as being the place where the Marsh Farm riots took place in the early 1990’s.

Scope of Works

  • We were appointed as the demolition contractor for the duration of the 28 week project. The scoped involved clearing all of the furniture and rubbish left bu the previous tenants throughout the 66 apartments and the 56 garages and 12 retail units.
  • Exclusion zones were established around the residential block and materials from the rubbish clearance were deposited from the upper floors out of the doors and windows.
  • Inner City Environmental then followed on removing all of the asbestos contamination materials ACM from the building.Both licensed and non-licensed ACM were removed from the residential and retail units during a 13 week period on site.
  • Running alongside the asbestos removal was the soft strip phase. All non structural elements (timber, plastic, metal etc.) were removed from the structure to help with recycling the materials and keeping the crushed material as clean as possible.
  • The main residential block was positioned within a few metres of a neighbouring residential property. To protect this during the demolition works, Inner City Scaffolding had to erect a protection scaffolding. This was a fully boarded scaffolding encapsulated with flame retardant Monarflex.
  • Structural demolition was completed using our Volvo 700 telescopic high reach. Smaller standard height excavators were used to demolish the lower sections and process materials.
  • Dust suppression was gained using ‘Dust boss’ sprayers and water hoses to help keep the dust on site under control.
  • All of the masonry and concrete was crushed on site to a certified 6F2 aggregate. This material was graded and then stockpiled on site to be used during the construction phase.

The link below is a time lapse video taken of the Marsh Farm redevelopment works which featured in a BBC News article regarding the history of the site and the details of the regeneration. 

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Project Name: Marsh Farm, Luton

Luton, Bedfordshire

Value: £600,000

Duration: 28 Weeks

100 years of demolition experience


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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statement - Wednesday 25th March

The Prime Minister’s announcement on Monday evening signalled the introduction of more stringent restrictions on us all and has specifically indicated that members of the public should only leave their home for very limited purposes. The message indicates that we should travel to and from work, only where this is absolutely necessary.

The management of the Downwell Group of companies which includes: Downwell Demolition, Inner City Environmental and Inner City Scaffolding has very carefully considered both the meaning and the spirit of the Prime Minister’s statement and whilst there has been some clarification from government subsequently that building sites could continue to operate, we came to the very clear decision yesterday that it was necessary for us, as a responsible contractor, to safely and securely close down our operational sites as soon as reasonably possible. Doing so will assist in maintaining the wellbeing of our customers, employees, sub-contractors, suppliers and the wider communities within which we build.

All sites have been closed down in a safe and secure manner and will remain closed until further notice.

We would like to take this opportunity of thanking all the key workers on the frontline who are continiung working for the good of us all.