The beginnings of FP McCann were formed in Northern Ireland in the 1950s on the back of a small quarry and asphalt surfacing operation. This family-run business has grown over the years into a leading Northern Ireland civil engineering and asphalt surfacing company. From roads and bridges, rail, sports complexes, public realm, landfill sites, and renewable energy projects, FP McCann has a wealth of experience in constructing and managing projects.
Through its network of Northern Ireland quarries, asphalt, ready-mixed concrete and precast plants, FP McCann also supplies a wide range of heavy building materials to the country’s construction industry.
From a standing start in 2000 and following the acquisition of Hepworth Concrete Products in 2005, FP McCann has spread across the water to see rapid growth in precast concrete on the UK mainland. Helped further by the acquisition of Ennstone Concrete Products in 2009 and with significant investment in plant and machinery at a number of its production facilities, precast concrete now forms the core of FP McCann’s business.
Knowledge, skills & experience
This rapid growth, enhanced by many years of knowledge, skills and experience broughtonboard via the acquisitions and from other multi-national businesses such as Tarmac and Hanson, has seen FP McCann become the UK’s market leader in the manufacture, supply and delivery of precast concrete drainage products.
However this is not the full extent of FP McCann’s capabilities, with the company’s
precast range extending far beyond drainage into shaft and tunnel linings, power cable ducting, concrete fencing posts and panels, rail products and a bespoke product service to meet non-standard requirements.
Products are manufactured and delivered through FP McCann’s series of modern
manufacturing plants located at Alnwick in Northumberland, Ellistown in Leicestershire, Cadeby in Warwickshire, Telford in Shropshire, and Knockloughrim in Northern Ireland. “This geographical spread gives us an unrivalled ability to serve the construction industry throughout the UK and Ireland,” describes Stuart Carson, rail products manager.
“These plants all incorporate the latest computerised batching, distribution, casting, curing, and handling systems, and are operated by skilled and experienced workforces to ensure consistency of quality. We have also invested £1 million in a new Coote wet cast line at Cadeby primarily for our fencing products, but oversail blocks for the rail sector are cast in the system to a high quality.”
All precast rail components are manufactured to Network Rail or London Underground specification. FP McCann is a nominated Link-up and Supply Line approved producer of precast concrete cable troughs and concrete platform copings to the rail sector. Stuart highlights the importance to the company in holding these approvals: “Full product approval allows entry into a limited manufacturer market place and as a relatively new entrant, particularly in the production of platform copings, it has opened the contractors and clients eyes to not only what we can offer rail products wise, but also to our full range of precast concrete offerings from drainage to tunnel segments.”
FP McCann’s precast concrete rail products portfolio extends further to include platform components such as edge warning tactile paving, trestle slabs, platform support beams and oversail blocks. Nosing slabs are also available in accordance with London Underground specifications. Further expertise lies in the manufacture and stock of over 30 different types of ‘C’ series cable protection troughs and lids. These serve to protect power and communications cabling from accidental damage or acts of vandalism, whilst allowing for ease of access for maintenance and repair.
Building upon this, FP McCann is open to working with the rail sector to identify and engineer solutions such as tamper proof lockable lids for the cable protection troughs. These products are supplied throughout the UK rail market via recognised stockists to track term maintenance contractors such as Birse Rail, Osbornes, VGC, Steadline, BAM Nuttall, and Stobart Rail.Re-signalling contract
Currently, FP McCann is nearing completion of the supply of precast concrete ‘C’ series cable troughs to a £2 million re-signalling contract, for term contractor VGC and consultant engineering partner Atkins, a main framework contractor to Network Rail. At the core of the programme is the upgrading of the old semaphore wire and pulley signalling system on 17 miles of dual track between Stourbridge and Hartlebury in North Worcestershire with 34 new automated signals along the route. FP McCann has delivered a total of 15,000 straight troughs and lids, and around 350 transition and ‘Tee’ junction box units to the project to carry the new power and communication cables.
This year saw FP McCann exhibit at the Infrarail trade fair at Birmingham’s NEC for the first time, promoting its range of precast concrete platform components and cable protection troughs to a wide and varied audience. The bi-annual event attracts thousands of visitors, but more importantly, a healthy cross section of rail engineers, consultants, designers and procurement representatives. Already well positioned with Network Rail through the supply of its concrete protection troughs, FP McCann took this opportunity to push its newly extended range of platform copings, supported by new product literature with in-depth technical detail.
With FP McCann harbouring a clear ambition in terms of its position in the industry, Stuart concludes with his thoughts on how the company will look to achieve this: “Opportunities in the rail sector are still growing under the Network Rail Multi Asset Framework Agreements (MAFA) contracts and re-signalling frameworks, which we will look to take advantage of. It is vital that we continue to consult with our clients and customers and further develop our precast concrete knowledge and skills in line with rail industry developments. Our strategic goal is to become number one in each of our precast business sectors. Within the rail market, we intend to become the first choice supplier on the back of our extensive package of approved precast products.”
For further information on FP McCann, visit their website atwww.fpmccann.co.uk