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Old 05-04-2006, 11:03 AM posted to uk.rec.gardening
Dan
 
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Default Old Railway Land - Veggie Plot

Hi all,

I'm buying some land that was previously (about 50 yrs ago) part of a
small branch line. I'm hoping to develop the land into a garden and
veggie plot.

Who/what should I use to test the soil for heavy metals or oil/diesel
products to make sure my veggies are fit for human consumption?

Is there a home test kit approach, or am I best to get the pro's in?

Many thanks
Dan


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Old 05-04-2006, 05:35 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
cliff_the_gardener
 
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Default Old Railway Land - Veggie Plot

There are no home tests kits.
If you want to test the soil for heavy metals etc, have a look in the
Yellow Pages under Laboratory Facilities
I you are buying industrial land, you will become responsible for the
bioremediation, removal of contaminated soil. If you susspect it to be
contaminated, you ought to have the soil tested by a lab first.
At a company were I used to work, we were looking to buy an old
industrial site, had a soil test done and found it loaded with all
sorts. So we left it alone. Would have been mega expensive to clear
up.
As the land you are looking at was railway, cansider the likely
contaminats. By the sounds of it, the line was axed during the Beaching
reforms, so most likely that the line was steam.
Clifford
Bawtry, Doncaster, South Yorkshire

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Old 05-04-2006, 08:22 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
Mike Lyle
 
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Default Old Railway Land - Veggie Plot

cliff_the_gardener wrote:
There are no home tests kits.
If you want to test the soil for heavy metals etc, have a look in the
Yellow Pages under Laboratory Facilities
I you are buying industrial land, you will become responsible for the
bioremediation, removal of contaminated soil. If you susspect it to
be contaminated, you ought to have the soil tested by a lab first.
At a company were I used to work, we were looking to buy an old
industrial site, had a soil test done and found it loaded with all
sorts. So we left it alone. Would have been mega expensive to clear
up.
As the land you are looking at was railway, cansider the likely
contaminats. By the sounds of it, the line was axed during the
Beaching reforms, so most likely that the line was steam.
Clifford
Bawtry, Doncaster, South Yorkshire


If the price is right, I'd just buy it. They're not making land any more
round here. During negotiations you should mutter a lot to the seller
about possible contamination, of course, (sulphur from coal waste,
engine oil) but go away rejoicing when you've closed the deal: if it was
just a strip of branch line where the traffic passed through, I don't
see how any nasties would have built up. If it's growing good weeds,
it'll grow good garden plants. It's not an ordinary industrial site
which might have a couple of hundred years' worth of God knows what in
the ground (my mother and her sister had the awful problem of wanting to
sell a small factory site they'd inherited, and which had been used for
a silver-plating works! It should have been worth a fortune, but...)
Nothing will come through into any vegetables you grow. The road bed
will be very stony, of course: that will need to be dealt with, partly
by adding lots of organic material, but it should mean the site is
nicely drained. I think you're probably very lucky to have the chance:
if I'd known then what I know now, I'd have bought up a couple of old
railway stations when nobody wanted them.

--
Mike.


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Old 05-04-2006, 08:45 PM posted to uk.rec.gardening
Mike
 
Posts: n/a
Default Old Railway Land - Veggie Plot

As it was an old branch line, it would have had wooden sleepers which were
generally soaked in Creosote. Would any of that leached into the ground and
still be there?

Mike

--
-------------------------------------------------------------------

"Mike Lyle" wrote in message
...
cliff_the_gardener wrote:
There are no home tests kits.
If you want to test the soil for heavy metals etc, have a look in the
Yellow Pages under Laboratory Facilities
I you are buying industrial land, you will become responsible for the
bioremediation, removal of contaminated soil. If you susspect it to
be contaminated, you ought to have the soil tested by a lab first.
At a company were I used to work, we were looking to buy an old
industrial site, had a soil test done and found it loaded with all
sorts. So we left it alone. Would have been mega expensive to clear
up.
As the land you are looking at was railway, cansider the likely
contaminats. By the sounds of it, the line was axed during the
Beaching reforms, so most likely that the line was steam.
Clifford
Bawtry, Doncaster, South Yorkshire


If the price is right, I'd just buy it. They're not making land any more
round here. During negotiations you should mutter a lot to the seller
about possible contamination, of course, (sulphur from coal waste,
engine oil) but go away rejoicing when you've closed the deal: if it was
just a strip of branch line where the traffic passed through, I don't
see how any nasties would have built up. If it's growing good weeds,
it'll grow good garden plants. It's not an ordinary industrial site
which might have a couple of hundred years' worth of God knows what in
the ground (my mother and her sister had the awful problem of wanting to
sell a small factory site they'd inherited, and which had been used for
a silver-plating works! It should have been worth a fortune, but...)
Nothing will come through into any vegetables you grow. The road bed
will be very stony, of course: that will need to be dealt with, partly
by adding lots of organic material, but it should mean the site is
nicely drained. I think you're probably very lucky to have the chance:
if I'd known then what I know now, I'd have bought up a couple of old
railway stations when nobody wanted them.

--
Mike.






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