Did you see SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS at Highways UK 2021?

SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS were pleased to attend Highways UK at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham, hosting a stand for the two-day event.

Picture credit: Melanie Willis, MW-PR

Peter Rieck and Jonny Jonas (pictured above on the stand) were the original minds who developed SHIMPAC® roadshims in the 1980’s. They were supported at Highways UK 2021 by Manager Barry Andrews and sales lead Dan McIntosh with Dawn Stares and Melanie Willis.

Barry Andrews said of the exhibition: “After so many cancelled events in 2020 due to Covid-19 lockdowns and imposed travel restrictions plus working from home, there was a real buzz at the event as construction industry professionals were able to network and talk business in person again.”

He added: “One of our key aims for the event was to promote and educate SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS offering to the specialist audience in attendance for use on future highway construction project plans. Having re-designed the company website and created a film to demonstrate our roadshims at the start of 2021, it was great to be able to showcase these. We also installed a large construction model and displayed samples of the various sizes, thickness and shapes to demonstrate how versatile our ironwork seating system really is.”

As a specially engineered solution to seat and level highway ironworks more effectively than cutting down bricks, our layered system provides a strong and durable solution that can be installed quickly and easily. It is designed to last, can carry the ever-increasing weight of traffic demands and withstand the adverse weather conditions we now face in the UK.

With the highest safety accreditations, SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS fully supports and exemplifies sustainability, which was a key focus for Highways UK in 2021.

Highways UK is an annual exhibition. To find out more about Highways UK 2022 with a ‘Connected Britain’ theme this year, visit the event website at: Roads for a connected Britain | Highways UK 2022 | 2 – 3 November 2022 (

To find out more about SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS or its product range, securing highway ironworks that last email Barry Andrews:


SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS = sustainable

With moves for contractors to be carbon neutral, meet Net Zero targets and reduce both energy and emissions, sustainable methods of construction are so important.

SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS provide a sustainable long-lasting solution, securing highway ironworks to last – in the following safe, efficient, and secure ways…

Sustainable image, located on the internet

1. SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS support sustainable travel

At a time when authorities are being encouraged to focus on sustainable travel improvements to encourage cycling and walking for health and environmental benefit, it is important to ensure that footway, cycleway and highway ironworks are level to prevent hazards for pedestrians and cyclists. SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS are fitted with millimetre precision to ensure that ironworks are kept secure without movement. One of the biggest hazards for cyclists are broken or uneven drainage channels at the side of the road – keep them secure by using SHIMPAC® products.

2. SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS can handle the weight of heavy traffic

With ever-increasing vehicle movements and more occurrences of congestion at peak travel times in our towns and cities, plus larger and heavier lorries on our UK roads from 2022, highway ironworks need to be stronger than ever to manage the weight of heavier loads. The SHIMPAC® product range has been engineered to last, able to withstand huge loads of 120 tonnes (so can be used for rail and airport ironworks too).

3. SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS last, whatever the weather…

The effect of global warming means excessively high temperatures, flash-flooding, prolonged periods of cold and/or icy conditions, our highways need to withstand the ravages of UK weather. SHIMPAC® products will not deteriorate in extreme conditions, staying strong and secure in the even the most testing wet, cold or dry weather conditions.

4. SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS are a sustainable installation

Contractors currently using SHIMPAC® roadshims advise that it is a better way to work, offering quicker installation, less hand/arm vibration or heavy manual handling (as the roadshims are easier than cutting bricks to size) with no specialist tools required. Plus, there is no wastage as any remaining ‘cut offs’ can be used as the base layer for other locations requiring ironwork seating, reducing waste by re-use.

To find out more about SHIMPAC® Systems and its full product range for all types and size of ironwork visit: Shimpac product range

Alternatively contact Barry Andrews, Manager at SHIMPAC® Systems on 07808 646299 or e-mail:


Sustainable travel needs a safe and secure ironworks solution

At a time when the Highway Code is giving more priority to cyclists and pedestrians over vehicles at junctions (January 2022) and councils are being encouraged to focus on sustainable travel improvements to encourage cycling and walking for health and environmental benefit, it is important to ensure that street ironworks are level to prevent them being a hazard for pedestrians and cyclists.

Pedestrian crossing and cycleway image

Unsecure or uneven drainage or other ironworks on the highway, footway or cycleway are a huge obstacle for cyclists and can cause serious wheel damage or personal injury.

National campaigns are being run encouraging people to cycle or walk during the Covid-19 pandemic as well as supporting ambitions for Net Zero travel. States of ‘Climate Emergency’ have been declared by many local authorities across the UK to encourage local support for green initiatives, with efforts stepped up, like those in Suffolk targeting families to adopt a Park & Stride, Walk or Scoot to school challenge. The need to be carbon neutral in line with the widespread adoption of electric vehicle use in 2030 as part of the Government’s Road to Zero strategy means that the highway network needs to be fit for the need of sustainable travel.  

Where street ironwork is concerned, a tried and tested system exists designed to specifically seat ironwork at the correct level needs to be widely adopted to keep ironworks stable as a permanent solution, without fear of movement. This strong and stable solution needs to resist extreme weather conditions and last many years without requiring further attention – a product that is by its very nature is sustainable by standing the test of time for generations to come.

Securing ironworks using SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS is a quick, easy, cost effective and ultimately simple solution. With a range of products specifically designed for the task at hand, these products ensure that ironwork installations remain strong and secure. The principle of “right first time” cuts out costly repairs and remedial work by investing in the right materials and their correct use. With cost and performance dominating life these days, this approach delivers immediate and direct savings to both the contractor and council; furthermore the speed and ease of installation cuts the use of traffic lights in most cases and limits traffic disruption to an absolute minimum. Indirect savings also flow automatically through improved safety and environmental costs, and of fewer potential damage claims by highway users for accident or injury.

With a “tailor on site” approach, SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS provides a flexible cost effective and sustainable method of carrying out installations and repairs to defects in ironwork installations.  Their products have been carefully pioneered and are difficult to beat for speed, simplicity, low cost, ease of use and ability to be sized on site with millimetre precision. They can be utilised by local authorities, water companies, asphalt companies and civil engineering contractors as the product is so versatile. 

All products in the SHIMPAC® range are quick and easy to install, can be cut to length on site without the need for specialist tools and are compatible with fast setting mortar. The products come in various thicknesses, allowing the contractor to build up the area beneath the frame to achieve the correct level; in extreme cases it can even be built up to form a much thicker laminated layer to bind the chamber top. Designed specifically to secure the chamber top and provide a platform to bed any ironwork, the product range has a proven track record of withstanding the heaviest of punishment from intense traffic of all sorts, including high tonnage haulage vehicles, in the most demanding of weather conditions from floods to snow.

The term ‘right first time, on time’ should become a mantra for the industry as there are products on the market that are provide a tried and tested solution to an ever-growing problem and do go a long way to prevent street ironwork installations failing due to movement around the ironwork housing.

All road users need a level surface, but cyclists and pedestrians are particular road user groups who need to be even assured that the route they wish to travel is free of hazards. By securing ironworks with SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS, as standard practice local authorities will be fulfilling their responsibility, effectively seating ironworks that can stand the weight of traffic and extreme weather for the long-term benefit of sustainable travel.”

To find out more about SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS and its dedicated product range for all types or ironwork installation contact Barry Andrews, Manager at SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS on 07808 646299 or e-mail:


Heavier HGVs mean ironworks must be stronger than ever

Longer lorries carrying increased loads are permitted to travel on UK roads from this month (January 2022) but what does this mean for highway ironworks?

HGV image: source online

Although fewer vehicles on the network is potentially good news (estimates say one in eight vehicles will be reduced) to reducing congestion and emissions, any increase in the maximum weight of traffic will put even more pressure on highway ironworks needing to withstand more weight than ever before.

The Department for Transport published its response to its consultation on the introduction of longer-semi trailers (LSTs) in 2021, after a nine-year trial of longer vehicles up to 15.65 metres in length. Although their report finds them to be safer, more economical and better for the environment. It is additional pressure on the existing highway infrastructure, not been created with this size of heavy vehicle in mind?

Loose or unsecure highway ironworks are a huge problem for many highway authorities, requiring temporary repairs to prevent hazards where drainage gullies at the side of the road or utility provider service boxes in the centre of the highway become loose from the weight of traffic passing over them or road subsidence around them occurs after resurfacing works.

A solution exists, than can cope with such heavy loads, having been extensively tested to withstand the heaviest weight of traffic (120 tonnes) and extreme weather (rain, ice and snow) without movement or deterioration.

Furthermore, the government has also announced it will soon launch a separate trial using heavier-than-normal, 48-tonne lorries, following a positive response from the consultation on their introduction. These lorries will be able to transport heavier containers directly to and from rail depots so that goods can be transported across the country by train but will require those highway routes to accept even heavier HGVs between these rail depots. The current maximum weight or a lorry on the highway network is 44 tonnes.

Barry Andrews, Manager at SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS said: “Although I understand the Government’s thinking around reducing the number of vehicles (1 in 8) and so emissions to help the environment, the reality is that we will face the same number of HGVs on the roads just carrying larger loads.”

“The network needs to be ‘fit for purpose’, which is where SHIMPAC®  products can help. We have created a dedicated system that secures highway ironworks more effectively than other means and it is proven to withstand the heaviest traffic. Our ROADSHIMS® have been tested for loads up to 90 tonnes so when used to secure ironworks will effectively keep them stable for many years – 38 years and still going strong at our original UK test location.”

“We would ideally like to see our products used as a matter of course by highway authorities as the solution to secure ironworks to last, without the need for costly remedial maintenance as a temporary fix year on year. It’s part of a sustainable approach, securing ironworks to last at a time when our roads are expected to cope with more and more extremes in terms of traffic, larger vehicles and extreme weather conditions.”

To find out more about SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS range of products for all types of ironwork installation, visit or contact Barry Andrews by e-mailing: or telephone 07808 646299.

Notes to editors:

1. SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS provide a stable and durable base for ironworks seating/levelling. Designed and industry approved, versatile SHIMPAC® products withstand extreme loads in highways, port, airport and rail locations. Developed by British expert engineers, products can be tailored to suit each location and are approved for use in many industries as a long-term and sustainable solution.

2. SHIMPAC® products are made of compressed cement and natural fibre combination. They are quick and easy to install and various thicknesses are available to make the area level with the road surface with millimetre accuracy.

3. The full produce range can be found online at Product Range – Shimpac

4. To find out more about SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS company history and product development visit About – Shimpac


England’s Economic Heartland event supported by SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS

Peter Rieck and Barry Andrews were pleased to support the East of England Heartland (EEH) at an event held at Silverstone in October 2021.  

Map of England’s Economic Heartland (EEH) area and the counties involved

The EEH is one of seven sub-national transport bodies for England (outside of London). The focus of this group is to bring together political and business leaders from these neighbouring regions in the heart of England to realise the areas economic potential with net-zero and carbon reduction in mind.

Barry Andrews, Manager at SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS said of the event: “It was really interesting to network with others interested in development of the Heartland area of the UK, which covers the heart of England, with Bedford at the centre extending from Peterborough and Cambridge to the north-west as far as Oxford and Swindon to the south-east.”

He added: “Topics discussed included the East to West rail link and strategic highway improvements with sustainability at the forefront of our thinking, something that SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS supports in our products that seat ironworks to last, without costing ongoing maintenance.”

As a specially engineered solution to seat and level highway and other ironworks more effectively than cutting down heavy bricks, our layered system provides a strong and durable solution that can be installed quickly and easily, is designed to last, can carry the ever-increasing weight of traffic and withstand all manner of weather conditions.

With the highest safety accreditations, SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS fully supports and exemplifies sustainability and the sterling work of England’s Economic Heartland in this area, led by Bedfordshire and Oxfordshire Council leaders.

To find out more about England’s Economic Heartland visit: 
England’s Economic Heartland – England’s Economic Heartland (

To find out more about SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS or its product range, securing highway ironworks to last email Barry Andrews:


New website and films launch for SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS

SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS – the foremost solution for seating and levelling ironworks – has a fantastic new website launching two new high-quality films as part of exciting developments to showcase new product lines. 


The new website – – profiles SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS’ multiple products ranges dedicated to building up and supporting ironwork level with any surrounding surface. In addition to its most popular product ROADSHIMS® the website holds full information about its Gully Collars TM for roadside drainage, Utility Collars TM for surface boxes, Toby Bungs TM or Temporary Safety Covers TM, Adapter-Reducers TM and Control Box Seating Systems. The website also includes a page on its Specialist Product services for on request design and manufacture of products for bespoke purposes.


ROADSHIMS® were first developed in the 1980’s, but since that time SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS have gone from strength to strength, creating new product lines to meet demand, becoming a must use seating system amongst many specifiers and users. Today, there are seven major ranges of products and services which are featured on the new website.


In an easy-to-understand example, the first film on the website highlights the cause behind defective ironwork installation and how SHIMPAC® products can help cut the future need for maintenance interventions.


Film two concentrates on the most popular products and their applications. This film shows a selection of the major industry sectors where SHIMPAC® products are best used, such as highways, housing development and construction, utility companies, water management, communications, gas and power, through to airports, ports railways.


Barry Andrews, Manager at SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS said: “We are delighted with how the new website looks and feels, it is easy to navigate with films that complement our products. Most who use our products have total belief in them and what they can do. From experience, we know that there is great potential for widespread use of SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS as responsible highway authorities, housing developers and utility companies strive to deliver the best quality first time to reduce the unnecessary additional cost and inconvenience of remedial works.”


He added: “My aim is to make sure there is the widest possible understanding of what SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS’ seating and levelling products can do across a wide range of industry sectors to improve budgets, reduce costs, increase safety and lower the need for remedial work. Our new website, introductory films and social media presence provide the fresh, modern and fitting showcase that our products deserve, as industry standards for the installation of all ironwork. Do get in touch with me directly to find out more about us and how SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS can solve your ironwork and related installation problems.”


Contact Barry Andrews, SHIMPAC® Systems Manager on 07808 646299 or email:


Notes to editors:


SHIMPAC® Systems provide a stable and durable base for ironworks. Quick and easy to install with various lengths, widths and thicknesses available, allowing the contractor to build up chambers to seat ironwork to exactly level with any surface with millimetre accuracy.


SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS are sustainable and fully recyclable. Designed and industry approved for use on all types of highway, pavement verge or other locations, versatile SHIMPAC® products also withstand extreme loads in port, airport and rail locations. Developed by Britishengineers, SHIMPAC® SYSTEMS are approved for long- term use in many industries. 



“After the ravages of winter, secure loose ironwork properly” authorities urged

SHIMPAC® Systems 26 February 2021

Annual repairs to roads damaged by the ravages of cold, wet, and after the ‘Beast from the East 2’ arctic conditions will cost local authorities millions of pounds in remedial maintenance for potholes and highway damage in the coming months.

At a time when councils are increasingly facing huge budget pressures, the colossal amount spent on temporary repairs around sunken manhole covers and unsecure highway drains, only for them to repeatedly fail is a truly inefficient use of taxpayers’ money according to Peter Rieck of SHIMPAC®.


Earlier this month (15 February 2021) UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced extra funding of £500 million to repair potholes on local roads in England this year to fill 100 million highway failure locations where potholes exist. This is the second annual instalment of additional funding support for highway maintenance totalling £2.5billion between 2020 and 2025 – but is extra funding for temporary repairs the best way to tackle this ever-increasing problem?

At sites where street ironwork is involved, much of this repeated temporary maintenance cost can and should be avoided using a system that seats the ironwork correctly and securely, providing a strong and stable solution. A solution that resists extreme weather conditions and lasts many years without further attention (35 years so far for the first sites to use SHIMPAC® in the UK).


“After the ravages of winter, loose manholes can and should be properly secured,” says industry expert owner of SHIMPAC® Peter Rieck. “Having developed an integrated and engineered solution for seating ironwork properly that can be tailored to each location, it is so frustrating to see councils still choosing to undertake poor temporary repairs every year. We have an effective and affordable solution available, with a successful track record several decades long.”


SHIMPAC® have been producing highly effective ironwork seating systems for almost 40 years. The product range and installation method is an engineered structural reinforcement to secure the chamber top, providing a strong and durable platform that lasts.


“We’ve developed an effective solution, proven to withstand the heaviest of punishment from the intense weight of traffic and the most demanding of weather conditions including floods and snow,” adds Peter Rieck. “SHIMPAC® systems provide a long-lasting structural solution to the problem of failed ironwork. Simply, quickly and effectively.”


Historically, poor workmanship has been to blame for a large majority of repeated failures, where contractors have attempted to achieve final adjustment for ironwork using stone mastic asphalt, cut bricks, quarry tiles, plastic shims, even beer cans and telephone directories or whatever unused material comes to hand, together with mortar. With an unstable base, the finished surface will crack and sink around the ironwork, resulting not only in costly repairs and traffic upheaval, but claims from vehicle users and personal injury claims resulting from raised ironworks. Loose ironworks can be particularly hazardous for motorcyclists and cyclists.


Some local authorities, water companies and civil engineering firms in the UK have been using SHIMPAC® ROADSHIMS® and COLLARS for years, but others are now being urged to use this approach. The term ‘do it right first time’ should become a mandate for the construction industry, as this type of product offers a resolution to a huge highway problem if secured properly using SHIMPAC® products.


The use of SHIMPAC® systems will ensure that planned new ironwork installations or repairs of existing installations will not repeatedly fail in the future. Savings for highway authorities and maintenance contractors can be seen in time related cost savings for install of the product, costly rectification visits and inspections, plus safety and environmental costs from the reduced need for traffic management on repairs, road user cost savings in terms of delays and diversion upheaval and the cost of damage claims to vehicle users from unsecure ironworks. Furthermore, the UK government should not need to continually repeat and further increase the additional millions of pounds in funding for emergency highway repairs beyond 2025.


For media enquiries please contact Melanie Willis at MW-PR on 07747 844995 or e-mail:

Notes to editors:

  1. SHIMPAC® Systems provide a stable and durable base for ironworks needing strong and secure seating. Designed and industry approved for use on all types of highway, versatile SHIMPAC® Systems products withstand extreme loads on highways, port, airport and rail locations.
  2. Developed by British expert engineers, SHIMPAC® Systems products come in various ranges to match virtually all commercially available street ironwork and where different shapes or sizes are required these can be manufactured through SHIMPAC® Specialist Services.
  3. SHIMPAC® Systems products are approved for use in many industries as the best long-term solution.
  4. Other major benefits of SHIMPAC® Systems products do not deteriorate with time or exposure to extreme weather conditions.
  5. SHIMPAC® Systems products are quick and easy to install and various thicknesses are available allowing the contractor to build up the area beneath the frame to bring it level with the road surface with millimetre accuracy. This negates the use of any uneven, inadequate or unspecified material to carry out the ironwork frame installation.
  6. SHIMPAC® Systems products are designed and manufactured with ESG principles in mind and are both sustainable and recyclable.
  7. For more information about SHIMPAC® visit the company website at