This report reviews sources of information on ground conditions in Britain, and points out some of the civil engineering applications to which they may be put. The sources include geological, soil, land-use, topographical and hydrographic maps and publications, mine records, information obtainable from official bodies and local engineering works, existing site investigation reports, air photographs, and site inspection. The availability of these sources of information and their interpretation and application to site investigations for civil engineering works, especially extended sites such as roads and tunnels, are described. The information that they provide can be useful at all stages of planning, design, construction and maintenance, but is likely to be of most value if obtained at an early stage in the planning of a project or for identifying the sources of problems during the service life of the works. The information is particularly important for route and site location and the early recognition of situations offering particular engineering difficulties, and for the planning and interpretation of the detailed site investigation. The information is available at low cost compared with that obtained by direct sub-surface exploration, and at an earlier date, and its use can allow more economical site investigations to be planned. The report was first published in 1971 by the Transport Research Laboratory as Laboratory Report 403. It was revised in 1976 as LR403 (revised edition) to take into account subsequent developments, including the metrication of Ordnance Survey and British Geological Survey maps. This present revision brings the information contained in LR403 (revised edition) right up-to-date at a broad level and includes a number of important new sources, for example on areas of mining instability, natural underground cavities and contaminated land. (A)

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