City West Housing Trust is part of the ForViva Group of social housing providers and owns and manages over 14,800 homes in the North West. It has undertaken a far-reaching sprinkler system installation programme to help safeguard tenants living in its 17 high-rise properties across greater Manchester. Two tower blocks in Eccles have been completed by locally based main contractor Protect24 in partnership with the Liberty Group. The other properties are located in and around Eccles and Knowsley, and work is due to finish in spring 2019.
Many tenants welcome the installation of sprinkler systems, but the associated pipework can be considered unsightly, so it is often encased (commonly known as ‘boxing in’), for a neater, more discrete look. Boxing in also protects the system; accidental, or even deliberate, damage to sprinkler heads can have major consequences, including huge refurbishment costs.
Pendock’s specialist pre-formed sprinkler system boxing is currently being fitted in City West Housing Trust’s high-rise properties. Installed in both the public areas and individual flats within the buildings – which are up to 18-storeys high – the system neatly encloses the BlazeMaster CPVC sprinkler pipework and heads. The caps covering the sprinkler heads will fall off if the temperature rises to 68oC, with water at 11 bar pressure being released to douse smoke and flames.
David Gibson, project director for Liberty Group, said: “In view of raised awareness about fire safety in high-rise buildings nationally, City West Housing Trust is moving rapidly to protect its tenants. We worked with Protect 24 on the specification of the systems to be employed, addressing communal areas and flats, and the whole installation is FIRAS certified. We are currently installing both the BlazeMaster CPVC sprinklers and the Pendock encasement products. Pendock’s profiles are easy to cut and fix, and they fit neatly around the sprinkler heads. They will also be easy to keep clean and maintain.”
Richard Braid, managing director of Pendock, said: “While there is currently no requirement to retrofit sprinkler systems in existing buildings, many social housing landlords are nonetheless doing so. Anecdotal evidence suggests there’s a perception that retrofit installations are unsightly, so it’s important for the visual impact to be reduced.For this reason, many landlords opt to have the systems boxed in. This goes a long way towards ensuring sprinkler systems are discreet and unobtrusive, and it can help alleviate any tenant resistance.”
Manufactured in Britain, Pendock’s encasement system fits closely around typical circular sprinkler heads, and provides a consistent, neat finish. Made to measure, it can be positioned horizontally, vertically and in corners, effectively covering lengths of sprinkler pipework running along ceilings and walls. It can be adapted to suit individual requirements, is simple to fit and doesn’t require painting, making it a cost-effective, quick solution. A range of accessories is available, including access panels and a bracket system that eliminates the removal of asbestos ceilings. Pendock also offers site visits and assistance with overall project design.
The encasement system being supplied to City West Housing Trust is manufactured from white melamine-faced timber, but aluminium and galvanized steel options are also available.
For further information, please visit www.pendock.co.uk