This case study describes a proposed commercial redevelopment at Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent. The site, located on the Tunbridge Wells Sand and Wadhurst Clay formations, has been affected by major structural faulting as well as by periglacial conditions during the Quaternary. A key aspect of the project was the development of a geological model to inform the engineering design. This study presents the ground model development process, starting with an appreciation of the macro geological setting, understanding the Quaternary landsystem, to focusing on the data from the intrusive ground investigation. The understanding of the primary sedimentary depositional system is critical to the development of a site geological conceptual model. Sediments from highly variable environments of deposition, such as were present in the Early Cretaceous, will present geotechnical and geohazard challenges to a site's development and this first-principles understanding is important in this process. The link from these fundamental geological principles to engineering design, communicated through the ground model, as demonstrated in this paper, is the requirement of the engineering geological appraisal. Locally complex geology demanded a phased site investigation approach, responding to an evolving design and to construction demands, and to meet defined programme requirements for a second-stage tender, to ultimately de-risk key areas with regard to the dynamic ground and groundwater conditions.

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