About Us

Exploration & Testing Associates Limited is a privately owned company with staff that has over 50 years’ experience within the ground investigation sector.

We are a small, friendly team who currently operate nationwide from two offices. Head Office and our Materials Testing Laboratory is located in Bowburn, Durham, with the Ground Investigation team run out of Coventry, a central location which is easily accessible for much of the country. Our strategy is to establish a network of regional offices, offering ground investigation, on-site and laboratory materials testing, supported by geotechnical and geoenvironmental advice and reporting.

Our dedicated team are here to help clients achieve and meet their goals in the most efficient and cost-effective ways. We believe it is important to train and guide our staff to develop and maintain good relationships with clients, whilst providing a thorough and professional service.

Our Team

Nik O’Brien

Nik O’Brien

Laboratory Manager

Nik is a Laboratory Manager with a strong managerial background and wide range of experience gained over 15 years in the geotechnical and construction industries. The interpersonal skills and practical knowledge gained within both the laboratory and through several national site-based projects were ultimately used to run a busy UKAS accredited geotechnical testing laboratory.

As a Radiation Protection Supervisor, Nik oversaw the maintenance, calibration, security and handling of radioactive testing equipment and provided health and safety training workshops. This included working with the external Radiation Protection Advisor and holding annual meetings with the Environment Agency (EA), Office of Nuclear Regulations and the North East Counter Terrorism Department of the Police Service. Nik wrote and introduced a company site security plan detailing the security measures, physical checks and personnel background checks to follow to be fully compliant with the requirements of the North East Counter Terrorism Department. Furthermore, using knowledge of HSE & EA regulations, created a Radioactive Equipment Security Manual and Waste Management Matrix in compliance with auditing bodies and the Police Service.

Nik became the Aggregate Manager at a busy aggregate recycling centre in 2016. His broad understanding of health and safety procedures, accreditation, quality control and training, was used to form a highly competent staff base in an efficiently running yard. Building key relationships with existing and potential clients was an important part of the role, in providing and negotiating costs, turnaround times and solutions to problems as they arose.

As of 2019, Nik has returned to the ground investigation industry at Exploration & Testing Associates. Nik is tasked with developing the new laboratory from the ground up, specialising in site and laboratory construction material and concrete testing and is working towards achieving UKAS accreditation for the laboratory and on-site services.

As well as Nik’s interest in fitness, he is a keen photographer. As well as those shown here, Nik’s photos can be found on his stunning Instagram page @nikobrien85. It’s well worth a look.