Hydrock logo RGB.jpg

Sarah Hey, Hydrock


Shortlisted for Category 14 - Best Young Brownfield Professional


I have been working in the brownfield sector for 7 years. I am passionate about the industry and like
to encourage others in to the profession as I believe it is a very rewarding career path.
I work for Hydrock in Manchester as a senior geo-environmental consultant and gained chartership to
The Geological Society in 2019. My goal is to ultimately achieve SiLC accreditation.
I have been involved in a number of complex projects that have had significant contamination issues
which has helped me understand the interaction between the scientific ‘chemical’ and the engineering
‘geotechnical’ aspects of this sector. I love to see the sites I am involved in progress from being
derelict, underused and unsafe to safe sites which improve environments, benefit local communities
and create jobs. I am particularly pleased when we contribute to sustainable solutions, for example,
when remedial technologies and risk assessments demonstrate that materials may remain on-site
which helps site viability but also reduces social and environmental impacts. With my passion for
sustainability, I volunteered for Hydrock’s company-wide Sustainability Working Group and I recently
led a UK-wide competition to promote the best ideas from staff for sustainable practices in the

Sarah Hey 1.JPG

“Sarah never fails to impress me with her enthusiasm for our profession. She is keen to get involved in all aspects of our work from the technical aspects and business development through to delivery of good quality work to the satisfaction of our clients. Sarah appreciates the opportunities that she has had herself and is always first to offer support and mentoring for more junior members of staff. This goes not just for our land quality team but also the wider multi-disciplinary office.” Danny Hope – Regional Director, Hydrock


Chemical Works, Cheshire

Project manager for a large-scale ground investigation at a largely disused chemical works. Works included assessing the potential risk from worked halite seams within the mudstone, determining the extent of contamination from historic and current uses. She produced the factual and interpretative reports, assessing both the soil and groundwater risks, as well as providing a remediation options appraisal to support the outline planning application.

Port Sunlight, Wirral – Site manager
Undertaking the investigation works to assess and delineate the extent of the landfill of galligu to assess its geochemical and geotechnical risks for the proposed development and the risks posed to the underlying Principal Aquifer of the Bromsgrove Sandstone Formation.

Cowley Gasworks, Oxford

Investigation of a gas holder site on behalf of SGN (Southern Gas Networks) as part of the management of legacy environmental issues associated with the site’s previous use. The gasholder site had historic structures associated with the site’s former use including underground
diesel tanks and live gas plant.


Rolls Royce, Derby

Supervised a highly detailed ground investigation to delineate the extent of petroleum hydrocarbons present within the natural sands and gravels derived from historic uses. The information obtained generated a detailed ground model, and consequently provided the Client with the
necessary details to determine the best remediation solution to re-develop the site for a residential development.

Catteshall Lane, Godalming

Investigation of an existing slope and retaining wall using a mobile working platform and specialist drilling rig to examine the existing material for its geotechnical properties. She also supervised the investigation of the wider site, including scheduling of chemical testing and was responsible for reporting and human health risk assessments as part of the remediation process.


Erith Regeneration Scheme

Project manager liaising with London Borough of Bexley and undertaking the ground investigation works at Pier Road, Erith High Street and Riverside Gardens. Sarah was responsible for acquiring all licenses and permits for working in the highways and pavements, and obtaining an Environment Agency flood risk activity permit. She supervised sub-contractors, scheduled the chemical and geotechnical testing and wrote the factual and interpretative reports.


G-Park, Ashby

Site manager for the investigation of an historic opencast site backfilled with deep Made Ground to assess its geochemical and geotechnical properties. She supervised the rotary drilling to examine whether the underling coal seams have been worked. As part of the works she also supervised concrete coring and DCP testing in the existing highway to determine the road construction for the proposed road expansion and junction.


RAF Kendrew Barracks

Supervised the ground investigation to aid the geotechnical design of the new building blocks, including carrying out infiltration testing to BRE365. A585 Norcross Congestion Relief – Responsible for liaising with Highways England and producing the required documents Statement of Intent, Preliminary Sources Study Report and Ground Investigation Report. Sarah supervised the drilling and hand pitting in the grass verges surrounding the A585 under traffic management supervision. She provided advice on remediation of an asbestos hotspot.


RAF Newton

Site manager for a large-scale ground investigation on a radioactive site, using a Geiger counter to assess the potential radiation risk of underlying soils. Works included the supervision of site investigation teams, management of all aspects of health and safety, retrieval of chemical and geotechnical sampling, scheduling of chemical testing, gas and groundwater monitoring, factual and interpretative reporting.


HS2 Curzon Street, Birmingham

Sarah undertook high level logging of the Bromsgrove Sandstone Formation including sub-sampling of the logged core and the preparation of samples using a wax bath. She supervised site investigation works of concrete coring, windowless sample drilling, DCP testing and carried out gas and groundwater monitoring using a low flow pump. She also acted as Deputy Package Manager for a two-month night works job supervising a utility survey, CCTV survey and concrete coring of the highways and pavements of Birmingham city centre. Eastgate South, Driffield – Site engineer responsible for the site investigation at former fuel depot adjacent to a railway, including logging and sampling of the petroleum hydrocarbon contaminated glaciofluvial soils. Sarah undertook gas and groundwater monitoring of the site, including purging of the groundwater, and producing a remediation method statement to deal with the on-site contamination.


Eye Cell 4, Peterborough

Site engineer supervising rotary auger boreholes through a landfill to assess the capping layer, depth of landfill material and depth to the Oxford Clay Formation ensuring gas levels posed no risk to the drillers.