PETER WALKER University of New England, Armidale, NSW, Australia
JOHN DICKENS University of Technology, Loughborough
Dry-stone walls are an ancient and widespread form of masonry construction. In 1987 approximately 50% of all highway retaining walls in the UK were estimated to be dry-stone. The paper briefly outlines the typical form of construction, common causes of instability, failure mechanisms, methods of stability analysis and maintenance procedures for dry-stone walls. The limitations of using a simplified stability analysis, which treats the flexible dry- stone wall as a rigid structure, are discussed. Recent work modelling dry-stone walls using a discrete element rigid block analysis is also outlined. Procedures for identifying problem walls, monitoring of deformations and methods for both stabilisation and repair are summarised.