To mark the 100th anniversary of female fellowship of the Geological Society, we spent the day with a geotechnical engineer working on the Tideway project.
Roser Soler Pujol is the scientist within the team on the western section of the Super Sewer project who looks at the ground conditions within which we are working to identify any possible risks to our construction or tunnelling activities.
Geologists study the Earth and its processes, many of which such as landslides, earthquakes, floods, and volcanic eruptions can be hazardous to people. They work to understand these well enough to avoid building important structures where they might be damaged.
Senior Geotechnical Engineer Roser provides important support to the Tideway project. Updating the geological model of the western section, overseeing trial pits, logging boreholes or managing gassing wells are only a small part of her varied role.
Spending a morning on what was one of the hottest days of the year in the Frogmore Connection Tunnel with Roser, Communications & Community Investment Manager for the Joint Venture on the western section Katie Ashton helped check the spoil coming out of Tunnel Boring Machine Charlotte's head to confirm the ground conditions of our excavation.
Operating in often muddy and cramped conditions, the work undertaken by Roser is invaluable to the Tideway project. Roser was trying to identify both the London Clay Unit we are digging and also the presence of claystones fragments within the mud which can cause wear of the TBM’s cutter head tools and block the screw.
Roser has been a Fellow of the Geological Society of London since 2014 and 2019 marks the 100th anniversary of female Fellowship of the Society.
Founded in 1807 the Geological Society of London is the oldest geological society in the world and following the 1918 Representation of the People Act, the Geological Society’s Council appointed a committee to consider ‘The most convenient and expeditious way of effecting the admission of women into the Society.’ A simple amendment was made to the byelaws and on the 21 May 1919, eight women were elected as Fellows of the Geological Society: Margaret Crosfield (1859-1952), Gertrude Elles (1872-1960), Maria Matilda Gordon (1864-1939), Mary Sophia Jonston (1875-1955), Mary Jane Donald (1855-1935), Rachel MacRobert (1884-1954), Mildred Blanche Robinson (1865-1935), and Ethel Gertrude Skeats (1865-1939).
Roser Soler Pujol is also a European Geologist (Eur. Geol.) since 2016 and member of the Official Spanish Institution of Geologists (Ilustre Colegio Oficial de Geólogos, ICOG) since 2003.
With 2019 also marking the 100th anniversary of the Women’s Engineering Society, female Fellowship of the Geological Society signposts another very special centenary to celebrate this year.