The initial BS3882 standards were set out by the BS1 in 1994, before going under revision in 2007 and again in 2015, to produce what we now know as the BS3882:2015 standards for topsoils that are imported and traded. The 1994 standard was seen as being too light and ambiguous and open to manipulation, therefore evolving into the 2007 version. This has now since been revised and a 2015 version of the British Standard was released on the 1st April, 2015.
The BS3882 standards are split into two categories:
Multipurpose Topsoil - this should cover the majority of landscaping applications and removes the ambiguity suffered by the 1994 version. Most customers commonly refer to this grade when requesting and although the majority of more recent specifications are tightening up on these parameters, the BS3882:2007 Multipurpose standards ensure that the basic characteristics that contribute to a good, friable and nutritionally sound growing media are covered.
Specific purpose - these parameters cover a requirement when sourcing soils that need to be either Acidic (ericaceous), Calcareous and Low Fertility (the 2015 ammendment now distinguishes between acidic and calcareous). The fundamental physical parameters are the same as with the multipurpose requirements, with NPK levels and ph being the predominant variables that define these set characteristics.
There is a downloaded and printable version of the BS3882:2007 standard in our "Technical Data" section so please check this against any analysis you are presented with to ensure the material is fit for purpose. The 2015 version will be availble to download shortly, so please call us for details.
Sourcing reliable and consistent BS3882:2015 topsoil
Once you are presented with an analysis, this is far from an assurance that the material delivered is covered by the same set of results. Many suppliers will attempt to sell re-cycled or multi-source topsoil so there are a few checks you need to make to ensure the material is reliable and consistent with their analysis:
- Never except an analysis that is over 6 months old - you should demand an up to date set of results as the majority of our soils are tested every 200-500m² as standard
- Make sure that the supplier gives assurances that the analysis covers every loads you require for the job and they are not switching materials or sources half way through delivery
- Visit the stockpile if possible and get an idea of the suppliers methods (be it an as-dug or manufactured material) and quantities. If they seem unwilling to allow this or the stockpile is only a fraction of what the project requires it should raise alarm bells.
- Try to carry out independent testing after 200-500m² and once again at the end of a job to ensure these results match up with the original analysis.
This may seem like a pedantic and costly way of ensuring the quality and consistency of the topsoil but it will ensure there are no performance problems around the corner and with institutions like the NHBC tightening up on their testing schedules, getting caught out with un-suitable topsoils can be a very costly excercise to rectify.
DELIVERY OPTIONS *
Having our own fleet of tippers, grabs and hiab offload facilities allows us the flexibility and reliability to deliver any quantity to you on time with minimal fuss. Plus our drivers have extensive experience of delivering into some very demanding areas, like central London (our entire fleet has been passed by TFL on their FORS scheme).
* For more details see Delivery
We operate two bagging sites in Kent where we have the capacity to bag the majority of our products in either bulk bags or smaller 25kg bags.
- Up to 40m3
- Up to 20 tonne
- 4/6/8 wheel
- RIGID GRAB/
- Up to 40m3
- Up to 16 tonne
- 4/6/8 wheel
- RIGID GRAB/
- Up to 50m3
- Up to 30 tonne
(bark, compost, lightweight soils, manure)