Geotechnical and Environmental Associates (GEA) was established by Steve Branch in 2003, prior to which Steve was Managing Director of LBH Wembley for over five years. Steve was soon joined at GEA by former colleagues Mike Plimmer, Juliet Fuller and Penny Piddington and in 2004 by Martin Cooper, who worked with Steve and Mike at Wembley Labs in the early 1990s.
GEA has grown steadily over the past ten years and we now have around 20 staff in our two offices, and a turnover of about £2M. We have a policy of mainly recruiting graduates and promoting staff internally, and as a result have very low staff turnover.
All of our staff are provided with high quality training, through internal appraisals and reviews, lunchtime workshops and presentations from our own staff and external companies, and attendance at training courses and seminars. We are also often asked to present seminars on issues of interest to our clients.
We have close ties with the University of Portsmouth Engineering Geology & Geotechnics Bachelor of Engineering degree and were one of the founding industry partners for their very successful bursary scheme. We have a placement student with us for some 44 weeks at the end of their second year of study, as well as an 8-week period at the end of their first year. Steve Branch is a member of the Bursary Management Committee.
Our engineers are encouraged to participate in the wider geotechnical and geoenvironmental industry and Mike Plimmer, Martin Cooper and Matthew Penfold are active members of a number of AGS working groups. Martin is also a schools ambassador for the Institution of Civil Engineers.
Our success is based on our enthusiastic and intelligent approach and we never cease to seek innovative solutions to ground-related problems. Whilst our sound technical ability and judgement, supported by a wide range of experience, underpins all of the advice that we give, it is our ability to take technical problems and turn them into real practical and commercial solutions for the benefit of our clients that is perhaps our greatest strength.