40 years of Joseph Gallagher Limited

From setting up a Joseph Gallagher Limited (JGL) company bank account in 1982 with a mere £5 at the age of 37, to becoming one of the most respected businessmen in the tunnelling industry. Proud owner and Chairman of the Joseph Gallagher Group – Irishman, Josie Gallagher celebrates 40 years since the inception of JGL. The business proudly remains with the same bank (HSBC) to this very day.

Josie prides his business on never having lost a client in 40 years and still stands by his core beliefs of delivering quality and operating as an open and honest business with the ethos of hard work and technical excellence. Josie sits as chairman and is still very much at the helm of both strategic and operational decisions.

1980's Midland Bank
The journey all began at Josie's local Midland Bank branch in 1982

His passion for tunnelling has cascaded down to the family with some of his children now members of the Strategic Board and appointed into integral roles to ensure the Joseph Gallagher legacy continues.

The Group is currently going through a succession process with the Gallagher family to ensure its future security as the second generation take the reins in the coming years.

Founder and Chairman - Josie Gallagher
Founder and Chairman - Josie Gallagher

When I formed the company - Joseph Gallagher London Ltd (as it was known then) – back in 1982, I think I can be honest in saying that I didn’t envision it still being in business some 40-years later. I’m very proud and humbled by the success and longevity the company has enjoyed over the last few decades and, in all honesty, it is a testament to the hard work, skill and expertise of all the men and women the business has employed over the last 40 years. It always has been - and always will be – the workforce that makes the company what it is.

Josie Gallagher

Founder, JGL

Here's our Founder, Josie with his Special Recognition Award.

It is fantastic to be celebrating 40 years since the inception of Joseph Gallagher Ltd and to now have a Group with a turnover of more than £100 million with the same ethos that Josie set out with all those years ago. The business is run following Josie's values for hard work and honesty and if it wasn’t I wouldn’t be here. The 40-year celebration coincides with the culmination of a succession process commenced 2 years ago which will see Josie’s legacy safeguarded and the next generation take the business forwards in the years to come.

Steve Harvey

Group CEO, JGL

Looking back across the 40 years, many accomplishments have been made - these being:

1985 – Josie and his team were at the heart of the infamous Isle of Wight rescue with two tunnelling crews sinking a shaft to try and rescue a local individual who had ventured into a deep well which sadly collapsed on him. The rescue itself attracted the world’s press who remained put until the rescue was complete.

1995 – JGL acquired Specialist Plant Associates, now the only UK based compressed air plant company

1997 – JGL acquired NRC Plant – a leading UK Crawler Crane Rental and Sales Business, Exclusive UK distributer for HSC and Linkbelt Cranes

2004 – JGL launched the Structures Division

2009 – UK representation of Iseki Polytech Inc was purchased along with significant microtunnelling assets

2010 – Johnston Trenchless Solutions (JTS) joined the Joseph Gallagher Group adding HDD, Guided Augering, Augerboring, Pipe-bursting and additional microtunnelling capacity to the Group

2010 – The Group entered the Middle East market – working in Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman and Saudi Arabia and more recently Abu Dhabi and Dubai

2014 – The Group’s LIFE (Living Incident Free Everyday) culture was launched.

2017 – Josie received the prestigious James Clarke Medal (Lifetime achievement award) by the BTS

2018 – JGL’s Nine Elms South Bank Cable Tunnel Project won at the ICE Engineering Awards and Tunnelling Festival Awards

2019 – JGG’s cultural safety programme (LIFE) won at the Tunnelling Festival Awards

2020 – In partnership with Al Hassanain BSC JGL secured and commenced the Um Al Hayman Emergency Sea Outfall including the Middle East’s longest sea out fall a 2200 mm pipe-jack of 1.95 kilometres

2021 – JGL won the ROSPA Gold for the fourth consecutive year and three prestigious Green Apple Environmental Awards by the Green World Organisation

2022 – JGL received the ISO5001 Energy Management certification, allowing the Group to lead by example in the industry.

The business has been involved with many high-profile contracts being awarded spanning across the UK wide as well as overseas. These include:

  • Bank Station DLR in 1988 - 1992
  • Bank Station Capacity Upgrade – A 6-year project that involved deploying over 300 skilled operatives during the 17-week blockade
  • Structural alteration works - Underpinning Harrods and Somerset House
  • Access Tunnels for the Dorchester Hotel and The Royal Albert Hall
  • Crossrail – Connaught Tunnel, Vent shafts,
  • London Power Tunnels 1 – North of the river (2011-2018)
  • London Power Tunnels 2 – South of the River
  • Bond Street Station Upgrade
  • Disabled Access at Green Park
  • Excavating underneath a confined space for the west stand at Wembley Stadium.
  • Micro tunnelling to the new Arsenal Emirates Stadium
  • Shaft sinking for the New Metro shopping city in Gateshead
  • Numerous Residential Developments in London such as Battersea, Fulham Reach, Woolwich Arsenal, Sovereign Court, Chelsea Creek, Fulham Gas Works & Southall
  • Pipe Roofing at Newton Le Willows
  • Box Jacking at White Hart Lane
  • Carrick Fergus Salt Mine access drift
  • Yorkshire Potash Mine - The deepest shaft constructed anywhere in the world using the Herrenknecht Vertical Shaft Machine.
  • Thames Tideway – London’s super sewer
  • We are now extensively involved on multiple HS2 projects ranging from utility diversions, to operating TBM’s, to constructing SCL caverns, and ventilation shafts.

A special celebration evening was held at the Arsenal Emirates Stadium to commemorate the 40 years. Family, friends, associates, current and old staff all came together to celebrate the remarkable efforts and accomplishments of Mr Joseph Gallagher.