Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of MRW, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Scrap dealer secures 580-tonne Channel Tunnel drill on internet

By Greg Pitcher

After a high-profile eBay bidding war that saw prices soar to £10 million, a huge and historically significant drill has been sold to a scrap dealer.

Reclamet managing director Tony Wilkinson bought the last Channel Tunnel Boring Machine left in Britain in the hope of profiting from the high value of steel.

Eurotunnel put the redundant 580-tonne B6 (pictured) up for sale on the internet to raise money for charity, hoping for interest from engineering fanatics and museums.

But after eight-figure offers were exposed as spoofs, and the highest genuine bidder pulled out due to transportation costs, Kent firm Reclamet secured the drill for £39,995.

Wilkinson plans to dismantle the machine where it stands in Folkestone, selling components on the open market and the rest to Thamesteel in 3-tonne chunks.

It should take around four to six weeks with a team of four burners using standard cutting equipment with larger than average nozzles, said a Reclamet spokesman.

We feel the machine should remain exactly where it is as a monument to the largest civil-engineering project in the UK. But cash-strapped Eurotunnel have sold the site for office development.

It is the companys intention to auction the 228 Tungsten Carbide cutting tips as memorabilia, with the proceeds going to local charity the QEQM Cancer Care Appeal.

The firm, which is based in Manston, near Folkestone, employs 30 people and offers a range of services including vehicle dismantling.

And this latest project is not alien to it the firm scrapped the B6 drills predecessor when it was dropped and ended up 20 feet below the ground.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.