Two discerning comments were made by Stock; firstly, that direct involvement with site works was the only way to gain proper knowledge and adequate practical ability of underpinning, and, secondly, that theoretical knowledge per se should not be allowed to interfere with the application of sound techniques derived from long experience.

Regardless of the fact that Stock was dealing with ruinous and dangerous building structures constructed before the turn of the century and although considerable technological progress has been made over the past two decades, these statements are still relevant today in the context of underpinning. Much benefit can be obtained from Stock’s comprehensive descriptions both of earlier buildings and of the practice of shoring and underpinning at that time.

Shoring is generally used to provide temporary support to structures while the underpinning works are being executed. The interaction between shoring and underpinning should be appreciated, and great care must be taken during the final phase of the operations involving the removal of the temporary shoring and the acceptance of all structural loads by the underpinning.

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