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Posts tagged ‘thatch building regulations.’

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Ideal Home Show – thatched show house

We have finally had a chance to reflect and write about our involvement in last year’s Ideal Home Show and how it came about.

In April 2016 we were approached by David Richards Associates (DRA) to see if we could help facilitate a thatched roof for one of the three show homes planned for the 2017 event. Each year, DRA build an entire show village with three show homes with very different designs and themes. The show village is the centrepiece of the event.

After many calls and emails, we met with the organisers, architects and the construction company to find out how it all comes together. Once agreed and armed with drawings, show information, build times etc. we made a start.

Paul Wareing & Tom Stevens from Heart of England Master Thatchers, both of whom have experience of working on exhibitions and film sets agreed to carry out the thatching.

The show homes are built off-site using a steel frame modular system and then transported to London Olympia for final completion. There are six individual modules that make up the show home, four of which were to be thatched. Each modular section weighs between four and six tonnes and have carefully aligned lifting points secured in the steel work.

The thatching started in January 2017 at the off-site location in West Sussex and by Friday March 17th the modules were ready and craned onto the HGVs, with an anxious Tom looking on.

Given the size of each module, transportation had to be carried out at certain times of the day at no more than 30mph with escort vehicles accompanying each HGV.

We arrived at Olympia late Saturday afternoon on the 18th March all wondering what lay ahead. We were greeted with an empty venue except for a massive crane, cherry pickers and an army of banksman to start putting the house together.  The thatched house was the first of the three to be set up and by 1.00am, the roof sections still had to be craned into place.

Sunday morning saw the roof sections finally put into place so Paul and Tom spent the rest of the day dressing and rethatching the roof where each modular section met and where the lifting straps had moved the thatch.

All works had to carried out via cherry pickers and/or drop wires. In the meantime, lorries were in and out all day bringing in the other show homes and it was quite surreal seeing how this massive arena started to take shape.

See the link below for photos of the initial build up off-site and at Olympia.

Ideal Home Show – Images

The thatched roof was finished on Monday afternoon, with the straw finials kindly provided by the very talented Master Thatcher – Lee Hawkins, who knowing the tight schedule, worked over the weekend to ensure we had them for Monday. Once all the thatching works were complete, the roof had to be treated with Thatchsayf Fire Retardant. Although no obvious risk of fire, the organisers were still somewhat nervous.

There were now three days left for the rest of the house to be ready for opening on Friday morning. This was also the time left to get our stand ready, although we were unable to make a start on the stand until Thursday morning!

Our involvement in the show meant we were given prime floor space and a (very bare and basic) stand next to the thatched house right in the middle of the venue. Prior to this there were lots of meetings, calls and emails between ourselves and designers to get the stand backdrops and furniture ready for the show.

Having only been involved previously in smaller trade shows and exhibitions it’s quite difficult to explain the sheer scale and madness involved in getting this enormous venue ready.

Hopefully the images below can tell a better story.

Ideal Home Show – More Images

From the moment the show finally opened on Friday 24th March, there were thousands of people looking round the venue and the thatched roof. This continued for the next seventeen days!

The show organisers were delighted with the finished roof and the comments and feedback from all the visitors was gratefully received.

Would we do it again?

Ummm…………………why not?

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Thatch Fires – 2018

With this cold spell set to last, it is worth repeating the message that it is crucial that chimneys and flue liners are swept and inspected.

For the last five years and always around this time of year, the UK has experienced a prolonged dry spell coupled with bitterly cold Easterly winds. This results in very dry thatch roofs and many homeowners continuing to use their wood burners and open fires much more than they normally would.

Last Friday sadly saw the first major thatch fire of the year. The cause is not yet known.

Care must be taken when first lighting and it is imperative the right fuel is used on both wood burners and open fires.

Please take time to read our thatch fire safety advice leaflet, which offers sensible advice on how to minimise the risk.

TAS – Thatch Fire Safety Advice

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U-Values & Condensation in thatch

Thatch Roof Rafters

U-Values & Condensation in thatch
Modern living under thatch has changed in the last 10 to 15 years, with the introduction of modern central heating, double/secondary glazing, power showers and more home owners wanting fully vaulted ceilings. In addition, the requirements and associated recommendations from Building Control and insurance companies see the requirement for fire barriers and increased levels of insulation to be installed within the roof structure.

All these areas can have an effect on the performance of thatched buildings, therefore all components of the roof structure need to be built into U-Value calculations/reports.

U-Values are expressed in units of watts per degree of temperature difference W/m²K. Overall U-Values will vary according to actual thickness and density of the thatch. For example:

  • 300mm thickness of Water Reed – 0.29 W/m²K
  • 300mm thickness of Long Straw – 0.23 W/m²K

For comparison, the standard in Part L of the Building Regulations (2010) for replacement roof insulation at rafter level is 0.18 W/m²K.

A suitable insulation product to help achieve a U-Value of 0.18 would be Thatchbatts® as they are non-combustible, high density slabs which also offer additional protection in terms of fire resistance.

Vapour Control
It is widely accepted in the construction industry that in addition to sufficient levels of insulation, vapour control layers are required to control vapour and reduce the risk of condensation. A correctly fitted vapour check will also play an important part in the way the building continues to perform in the long term.

Bespoke U-Value & Condensation Risk Analysis reports can be generated for thatched roofs and will take into account the design and construction, type of materials used and location within the country.

See the Thatching Advisory Services website for further information and product details.

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Thatching Advisory Services – New Website

Thatched cliff-top shelter overlooking Seaton beach

Thatching Advisory Services (TAS) recently launched it’s new website. The new site contains the latest information on fire protection as well as comprehensive advice on buying, owning and maintaining thatched properties. There is a new section devoted to new builds and extensions which includes detailed information on roof construction and the latest building regulations.

There is comprehensive information on all our products and systems and a new facility to buy the products via our online shop.

Have a look around the site and feel free to contact us with feedback or if you have any further questions or queries.

www.thatchingadvisoryservices.co.uk

 

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Dorset Model – Technical guide to planning requirements for thatched properties.

Dorset Model

Thatch is enjoying a resurgence. Architects, builders and owners increasingly acknowledge the advantage of thatch insulation and aesthetic qualities. Recognising this increasing popularity the eight building control authorities throughout the county of Dorset reviewed current building controls for a thatched roof.

The result of these controls will:

  • Either protect the main structure of the building if a fire occurs.
  • Or provide better protection for the roof members if a fire occurs.
  • Require an acceptance to treat the thatch as sacrificial in a fire.

Companies specialising in thatch roof insurance welcome the “Dorset Model” and recognise that it will reduce the premiums paid.

www.thatchingadvisoryservices.co.uk/Dorset_Model.asp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Thatchbatt® The Real Thing!! from Thatching Advisory Services.

---- Imitation Flyer - April 2014.

TAS has recently embarked on a campaign to highlight the authenticity of one its products – Thatchbatts® and has sent out information highlighting the levels of testing and approvals that the product has gone through.

In summary, when specifying a non-combustible insulation product for a thatched roof, this needs to been done on a like for like basis and therefore careful consideration should be given to the specification. Thatchbatts® are a vital component of both the TAS-Thatch Firewall & TAS-Fireboard systems.

For more information about Thatchbatts® or other Thatch Fire Barriers, please contact Thatching Advisory Services on 08455 20 40 60.

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Hetas and Thatching Advisory Services collaboration.

TAS & Hetas Unite in Fire&fireplaces publication

Fires & Fireplaces November  2013 Issue

Chimneys in thatched properties.

Thatching Advisory Services collaborated with Hetas on an Editorial in The Technical column of Fires & fireplaces  November 2013 Issue;  to offer guidance on how to ensure chimneys installed in thatch comply with building regulations.

Fire & Fireplaces Article, By Hetas and Thatching Advisory Services

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