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A little known feature on the streets of London are taxi kiosks—places where London cabbies can find food and shelter.  The kiosks were first introduced in 1875 to provide cabbies with a warm, alcohol-free place where they could buy a hot meal.  There used to be dozens of these kiosks dotted around London but now just 13 remain, financed by the Cabmens’ Shelter Fund and still allegedly serving a very good  bacon sandwich!

So when it was discovered that the kiosk was in the way of  proposed changes to the road layout in a prominent London square, there was only one solution—the kiosk would have to be moved!

Unfortunately the planned scheme meant it was impossible to move the kiosk to its new home straight away so two lifts were required—one to a temporary location, then a further lift to its new permanent location when the other works had been completed.

Topbond’s engineers designed a lifting frame which would enable the structure to be moved in one piece.  To further reduce the risk of damage to the historic kiosk, timber stiffeners were screwed to the most vulnerable parts of the structure to prevent flexing. The internal fittings were removed and services disconnected prior to the lift.  A  timber foundation was laid  at the temporary location and the lifting frame was fitted to the kiosk.  A 50 tonne mobile crane was used to lift the kiosk to its temporary home.  There was some concern about the roof shingles but by moving the structure very slowly, not a single roof shingle was damaged.

Approximately 3 months later the kiosk the process was repeated and this time the kiosk was moved onto its new permanent foundations.  Both operations were carried out on Sundays when the road could be closed with minimal disruption