Your glossary of all things foundations.


An underground element of a building structure which connect the building to the ground and carry the load of the building. Foundations support and strengthen the structure of the building placed on them.
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A construction technique in which deep foundations are set for a variety of building projects, including extensions, bridges and high-rise buildings.
Pile foundations are driven deep into the ground in order to support very heavy structures.
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A method used to strengthen the foundation of an existing building or structure.
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Raft Foundations (also known as Mat Foundations)

A ‘mat’ of concrete that sits either on, or just under, the ground. They typically cover the entire footprint of a building and spread the load that’s placed on top of them.

Bored Piling

A commonly-used piling method. Transferring the load to the layers of surrounding soil or rock that have sufficient bearing capacity in order to provide support to a structure. The removal of spoil forms a hole for a reinforced concrete pile which is then poured in situ.

Bored Pile Wall

A bored pile wall is when a wall is constructed using the same method as Bored Piling
Bored Wall Piling Explained

Secant Wall Piling

A retaining wall constructed for ground retention prior to excavation

A Guide to Different Building Foundation Types

Shallow Foundations

Foundations are used for smaller buildings such as houses and can be made in depths of as little as 3ft (1m)

Individual footings

A type of shallow foundation usually used to support light structures. Created through digging holes in the ground and fitting with a reinforcement cage filled with concrete.

Strip Footings

A type of shallow foundation where concrete is placed in trenches and then built up to ground level using blockwork.

Deep Foundations

Deep Foundations are used for large, heavy buildings like blocks of flats or offices and can be made at depths of 60 – 200 ft (20 – 65m). 

Friction Piles

A type of deep foundation used when strong soil or rock is too deep.

End Bearing Piles

A type of deep foundation where piles are long enough for the end of the pile to rest on a layer of strong soil or rock deep in the ground


The downward movement of a property as a result of damage to the subsoil
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Earth Anchor/ Anchoring

Anchoring devices driven into the ground to support building structures
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CFA Piling

Continuous Flight Auger Piling – an almost vibration-free piling method suited to environmentally sensitive areas
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