West Dean College, gardens, studio, and wider estate are part of The Edward James Foundation; which delivers world class education in conservation and the creative arts, and maintains the college’s award-winning gardens. The Grade II listed college is one of South East England’s leading educational art institutions, stretching 6 miles from the southern shallow ‘dip’ slope to the northern steep ‘scarp’ slope.
Heightsafe were approached to provide bespoke Roof Access and Fall Arrest solutions at the historic college building. Given the stringent building permissions, Heightsafe had to co-ordinate closely with the architect to provide a compliant and aesthetically pleasing solution to suit their needs. This included the architect’s requirement of folding handrails to minimise the visual impact on the building from ground level, whilst also satisfying the planning restraints of a grade listed building. Careful co-ordination alongside our client and the crane sub-contractor allowed for us to lift the pre-assembled powder-coated units into position. From there, the team were able to make any necessary modifications once the system was in position.
After two surveying visits in the fortnight leading up to installation, Heightsafe personnel attended the site and began assembling the Step Units and Stepped Roof Walkways so the crane had easy access to lift them onto the building’s historical roof.
Most of the Step Units and Roof Walkways were installed successfully, but there were a couple of the Step Unit Systems that required further modifications to ensure they fully fitted into the roof. Once these changes were made, the systems were installed and tagged for compliance, meaning they were safe to use for Working at Height personnel.
Following the installation of the Access Systems, the Safety Line Systems were fixed into the building’s stone wall using threaded rods and resin. The start, intermediate and end components of the system were installed on the same day.
The new Step Units and Stepped Walkways can now provide access to any Working at Height personnel that may need to perform maintenance or other tasks on the roof of the building. The folding handrails ensure that these systems are not visible from the ground when the rails are down, which in turn preserves the structure’s historic image.
The new Fall Arrest System will prevent Working at Height operatives from falling any further than over the roof’s edge as the lifeline attached to their safety harness will lock in a similar way to how a seatbelt would if there was a car accident. Like the Roof Access Systems, the Safety Lines were tagged for compliance, meaning they do not need further inspections for up to 12 months.
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Heightsafe offer industry-leading Work at Height solutions, including installation and Compliance Testing. If you need specialist Work at Height or Roof Access Systems installing, Contact us today for a free consultation from one of our experts.