Mackley Expertise

Our core work sectors include specialised disciplines within the field of Civil Engineering.

our expertise

Within our 5 main sectors, we offer a number of specialisms.

our expertise

Construction Delivery

We deliver civil engineering construction projects, from minor civils works to large, complex multi-disciplinary schemes. 

With particular skills in working close to water and afloat, we manage the risks and challenges in these unique environments.

Our sites are frequently located in intertidal zones, within rivers, in historic settings, have limited access and are often home to protected wildlife. We work in highly visible public locations, on beaches, public parks and active quaysides. We also work for commercial clients in ports, harbours and water treatment facilities and supporting riverside developments.

In-House Specialists

We have in-house specialists in groundworks, concrete construction, steel sheet piling, rock placement, marine timber structures and earthworks. Combined with our own fleet of land based and floating equipment we can find the safest and most practical solutions.    

In all cases, we apply pragmatism and ingenuity to develop the best construction methods that meet the clients’ needs.

Facing Challenges

We love a challenge! Our teams are frequently put to the test and deal with:

  • Limited access, from land or from the water
  • Historic and protected structures
  • Working at height
  • Busy public areas
  • Protected and invasive wildlife
  • Unstable structures

Own Fleet of Plant

We have our own extensive fleet of plant, including electric vans, land-based plant and floating kit. Meticulously maintained by our highly skilled Plant Team, we use the most up to date equipment tailored to marine working. With all the latest safety features and using biodegradable fuels and lubricants, providing low carbon emissions, reduced noise and high efficiency.

Ever Changing Coastlines

Tidal working needs careful planning, monitoring of tide tides and weather forecasts. The shifts are timed just right to make the most of the available working windows.

  • Working with spring tides when the high tides are at their highest and the low tides are at their lowest
  • Working with neap tides are less extreme – the difference between high and low tides is at its lowest.
  • Constructing protective sand/shingle bunds around the site to give the teams as much time as possible to work on the outer ends.

our expertise


Mackley is often involved in a project before it’s a project, with Early Contractor Involvement (ECI).

We put our decades of expertise and practical experience to good use in the earliest stages of project development.

We have specialists in procurement, plant hire, programming, NEC contracts, temporary works design, biodiversity and stakeholder engagement, not to mention the priceless technical experience from the guys on the ground. 

We look at the risks and opportunities and advise on the safest and most cost effective methods. We have experts in buildability, innovation and how to solve complex engineering challenges. More often than not, we’ll have done it before!

ECI for minimising disturbance

Our in-house experts provided ECI advice and buildability assessments at the harbour entrance at Reach W1, one of the 10 ‘reaches’ at our Shoreham Adur Tidal Walls Scheme. This supported the development of the early designs. We identified, developed and implemented significant value engineering proposals during construction, a few of which included:

  • realigning the flood walls to reduce impacts on residents
  • property level protection at a local pub/restaurant, and
  • incorporating utilities within the flood defences, to avoid the need for diversions

ECI for long term stability

At our Tower Wharf Jetty Replacement project, we noticed that the entire wharf is built upon very soft made ground (hence the 36m length tube piles), resulting in a substantial risk of settlement in the bulk filled access ramp. Our ECI experts worked closely with the designer and client prior to any work starting, to re-design the ramp with sheet piled edges and concrete base so that it will remain stable during its design life.

our expertise


Mackley has been maintaining our coastline since 1927. Working for local authorities and the Environment Agency, we build up beaches, repair timber groynes and sea walls and renovate historic seafront structures.

Worthing Pier & Lido

We are contracted to carry out repairs to the Pier and Lido structures to keep them in good condition. Most of the work is done tidally to give us the time and access we need to do it safely.

  • Replacement timber decking
  • Timber struts
  • Steel supports
  • Tidal Working

Shingle Recycling Framework – Seaford

Each year, we move thousands of tonnes of shingle and sand to replenish material that’s been washed away by the sea, so that the beaches themselves can protect communities from waves and flooding.

  • Working on open public beaches
  • Shingle recharge – importing new material to the beach
  • Shingle recycling – retrieving shingle washed away and placing back on the beach
  • Beach re-profiling

Eastbourne Coastal Maintenance

Mackley constructed Eastbourne’s frontage defences between 1995-99. consisting of approx. 120 groynes, rock revetments, terminal groynes, sea walls, promenades, landscaping. We have maintained the beach through competitive tendering ever since.

We carry out:

  • Repairs to Top Marks and timber groynes
  • Concrete repairs to sea walls, steps and promenades
  • Beach management, including shingle recycling and general maintenance
  • Tidal working
  • Emergency response is also provided as part of this framework

our expertise

Emergency Response

Mackley is the first responder for flood incidents in the Southeast for the Environment Agency and a number of local authorities.

With 24/7 contact, our own fleet of plant and skilled staff respond at any time, assess the damage alongside our clients and then organise immediate repairs.

Hurst Castle Wall Collapse, 2020

After a section of the historic castle collapsed, caused by the sea undermining the walls, we were contacted by English Heritage.

  • Mobilised on site immediately
  • Rapidly designed and installed a temporary protective revetment
  • Delivered 5000t of rock armour directly to the beach by sea
  • Moved 6000t of shingle by road to create a protective revetment in front of the breach
  • Worked with Historic England for a permanent solution.

River Adur, Henfield 2023

After the wet and icy conditions in January 2023, a section of the River Adur embankment failed, causing further flood damage. We were contacted by the Environment Agency to temporarily secure the embankment.

  • Placed approximately 500 sandbags in the void
  • Pinned a sheeted membrane over the sandbags to further prevent washout.
  • Worked with the client for a longer-term solution.

Ventnor, Isle of Wight, 2022

A 35m section of seawall that supports Eastern Undercliff Esplanade as well as protects a sewer pipe and the Eastern cliffs of Ventnor itself, collapsed.

  • Provided a short term emergency solution within days.
  • The solution dealt with poor access, limited availability of materials, the physical size of the materials required and considered the wave action on the repair.
  • Used topographical surveys and Tell-Tales to establish a base-line. These were updated biweekly to provide live tilt monitoring to detect further failures.
  • Led the development of 7 design options (optioneering / ECI) within 2 weeks.
  • Appointed a Consultant to verify the designs and produce detailed designs of one of the options.
  • Kept all major stakeholders: IOWCC, Environment Agency, Southern Water etc updated at all times.

our expertise

Design & Construct

We offer options for combining design & construction activities.

Our Technical Services Team will complete the design in-house, or use their extensive site experience and design experience to coordinate, optioneer and develop the design with our partnering consultants and our specialist supply chain.

We can tackle designs ranging from bolt fixings and sea wall repairs, through to large-scale coordination and construction of multi-disciplinary projects. We can offer BIM compliance and advice where required. We will coordinate designs between design teams and ensure full adoption the CDM Regulations.

The design resources we use on each project are specifically tailored to meet the needs of the client, the complexity of the design and the scale of the works. As a contractor we are able to mobilise to site and undertake surveys, trial holes, dynamic probe and window sampling, quickly and easily. Informing designs, reducing project risk and minimising re-design once on site. 

Our in-house experience gives us the ability to look at the project from a buildability and cost perspective, so the design elements are focussed on delivering safety, buildability, cost effectiveness and sustainability from the outset.

We use the latest tools to add value and get to the heart of a project’s design as quickly as possible.

For example:

Using published LIDAR, point cloud surveys and bathymetric data our team will create 3D models to help clients, stakeholders, designers, estimators and our contracts teams understand the project or assist with optioneering. 

Using Civils 3D and LSS our design team and surveyors can take-off accurate cut and fill quantities for our estimators to price, providing improved value engineering during and feeding directly into the design process.

Using a suite of software our team can design and review a wide range of temporary works, geotechnical, piling and ground stability options in-house.

The team is experienced in a wide range of modelling and analysis software which allows us to directly input into the design solutions. We can offer a BS19650 compliant document Common Data Environment (CDE) to all projects.

Temporary Works Design

90% of our temporary works solutions are designed in-house, including piling mats, crane mats, piling frames, slope stability, cofferdams, excavation support and lifting frames.

The crane pad pictured was designed to support a 400T crane and to make sure:

  • The structure of the quay wall wouldn’t be compromised by the weight of the crane or its load
  • Sufficient space around the crane would allow safe lifting operations
  • The adjacent jetty could continue operating without damaging surfaces or structures nearby or impacting the working jetty right next to it.

Additional Areas of Expertise

As well as the construction, we can also manage these wider aspects:

Navigating through licenses, consents and approvals

Mackley works with regulatory bodies to gain the multiple approvals required on projects on or near water or within environmental sensitive locations.

We coordinate specialists required for each project. This can be Ecologists, Noise & Vibration specialists, Archaeologists, UXO or Contaminated Land experts.

We are experienced with:

  • MMO licences
  • Flood Risk Activity Permits
  • Public rights of way
  • Meeting planning conditions
  • Scheduled Monument consents
  • Wildlife licences and many others.

For our Shoreham Adur Tidal Walls we obtained over 20 different consents the client needed for the scheme.

Public and Stakeholder Engagement

We help our clients to get the public on board with their projects. We can advise and coordinate face to face events, print communications and social media engagement.

Our communications have been effective on all levels, from community wide engagement to arranging access for our heavy construction equipment through people’s properties.


We can deliver projects in compliance with BS19650 and can host a collaborative Common Data Environment (CDE) with integral GiS mapping. This intuitively accesses QA records, borehole logs, utility routes and pre/post-condition records geographically. We also use Autodesk AEC Suite for modelling.

Going above and beyond

Working within communities and public spaces, we understand can be a bit of an upheaval for people living and working close by. We understand that working within communities and public spaces can be a bit of an upheaval for people living and working close by.

Just a few example of how we always make sure we go the extra mile by:

  • Helping at, or sponsoring local events
  • Organising company-wide litter picks within the community
  • Invite local graffiti artists to decorate our hoarding
  • Additional renovations to community areas
  • or just helping elderly residents get to their properties with their shopping

“Thank you for your excellent work, your consideration, your consideration, willingness to provide updates and general friendliness while on site.

A great bunch of guys.”

Resident local to our Molesey Weir site


We work in some of the best natural sites in the UK, building structures alongside seals, otters, water vole, eels and avocets to name just a few.

This gives us an excellent opportunity to leave our sites in a better condition than we found them, fully supporting net biodiversity gain.  

We include places for wildlife to shelter or a means to pass through our structures, making sure they are no barrier to migration. We also create entire new habitats, from realigning the coastline to give space for new saltmarsh, to building up new mudflats using millennia old brushwood techniques.