Faithorn Farrell Timms LLP

Fire Reinstatement of Nippert Court, Isle of Wight

Reinstatement of a residential building following fire and water damage

The Project

Faithorn Farrell Timms were instructed by Southern Housing Group, in September 2016, to survey, specify, tender and manage the re-instatement of Nippert Court in Newport following a fire in the roof space, which destroyed two flats, and resulted in water damage to a further four.

Built in 1996, the building comprises 11 flats built across three-storeys, constructed of cavity brick external walls under modern slate roof.

The building is located close to the centre of Newport, County town of the Isle of Wight. It is situated in a Conservation Area and overlooks the busy junction of Carisbrooke Road, Drill Hall Road and West Street.

Our Role

We provided Project Management and Contract Administration services. Our role included administering the work in three phases:

  • Phase 1 – The damaged roof was made safe, including the removal of fragmented asbestos tiles.
  • Phase 2 – A protective scaffold was erected and elements of fabric such as floors and partitions removed to encourage drying out
  • Phase 3 - Remedial works including the demolition and reconstruction of the two upper flats and stripping out and renovation of four flats below

The Challenges

  • The building abuts a public pavement and narrow carriageway, necessitating highway closure to allow deliveries and scaffold erection. During the high tourist season, a notice period of three months was imposed by the local authority for closure to alter the scaffold.
  • The Conservation Officer required the outside of the building to be rebuilt to match the original and the Insurer’s Loss Adjuster required both the outside and inside to be rebuilt to match what was lost.
  • Our client required additional repairs to meet company policy for reletting vacant premises and adaptations to ground floor flats for accessible use.
  • Quenching of the fire and rain penetration roof meant that the fabric needed time and encouragement to dry out.
  • The coastal environment and risk of high winds and rainfall were a potential hazard to the already damaged structure.
  • Asbestos was discovered within the fabric of the building, which was unfortunate considering the age of the building.
  • Nearby flats remained occupied throughout the period of the work.

The Solution

Due to the difficulty arranging road closures, an adjacent car park was used to crane heavy components onto the roof with the contractor committing four banksmen to the task. The contractor was particularly proactive in liaising with neighbours and assisting pedestrians throughout the works.

The requirements of the Conservation Officer, Loss Adjuster and Client were carefully managed to give transparency in the use of materials and division of responsibility for costs.

A “top hat” scaffold was installed over the damaged rood and elements of fabric removed to encourage a drying out.

The building was stabilised and rebuilt under the instruction of a Structural Engineer.

At the outset, the artificial roof slates were found to contain asbestos and appropriate measures taken to contain and dispose of the slates and contaminated debris in the flats below.

There was regular liaison with the adjoining owners and Client tenants and the Contractor made a special effort keep them informed.

Added Value

Faithorn Farrell Timms were able assign a surveyor to the project with long experience of fire reinstatement and remediation sites and this has resulted in a relatively simple insurance claim and a well-managed contract within budget and within the construction programme.