With the existing roof of the building nearing the end of its life, the architect, contractor and manufacturer needed to collectively specify the ideal solution to ensure a new roof would be 100% waterproof for another 25 years
Given the heritage nature of the building, and its status as a destination museum, workmanship, care, craft and attention to detail were vital to the success of the project. So began a £350,000 project, starting with an intricate task of removing the old roof, and replacing it with a new, full-system and multi-material build-up.
The Solution that was specified for this project was BMI Icopal Total Torch, BMI Icopal Thermazone and BMI Icopal Thermaweld.
Project Name: Natural History Museum Tring
Contractor: D+B Facade
Client: Natural History Museum
“With multiple heritage features and differing architectures, a combination of BMI Icopal, Total Torch, Thermazone and Thermaweld products were sensitively and carefully applied”
“Workmanship, care, craft and attention to detail were vital to the success of the project.“
The main sources of complexity emerged from the nature of the property and the intricacy of its roof, with three parts needing attention.
The main building itself was tall, with a variety of plants and vegetation on the roof, making it particularly difficult to strip off the original roof.
The second part of the roof, housing ornithology, was a high-level block with more plants. This had asphalt on the roof, which needed to be overlayed with insulation.
The third part of the roof was a link roof, needing an overlay system with tapered insulation. This was particularly complex as work here was carried out during autumn and winter – and the team could not afford for any water whatsoever to penetrate, given the irreplaceable specimens housed within the building.
With multiple heritage features and differing architectures, a combination of BMI Icopal, Total Torch, Thermazone and Thermaweld products were sensitively and carefully applied. Then, following installation, solar panelling was also installed to boost the sustainable performance of the building. To fix the issue with the Vegetation growing on the roof, all the plants were stripped off and, once removed, the team then replaced it with an Icopal Profiles system, with tapered insulation on the main block. Given the nature of the building, and its status as a destination museum, workmanship, care, craft and attention to detail were vital to the success of the project.
Installation comprised a combination of a torch application and self-adhesive hot air to high-risk areas, ensuring no part of the roof would be at risk of damage. Problem-solving was also a key part of the workmanship. For example, on the ornithology block, when the project was nearing completion, the perimeter upstand was found to be too low to comply with legal requirements. To overcome this challenge, the team deployed an innovative idea: using a BMI Profiles red cap sheet around the perimeter, accompanied by signage, to highlight that the area was a no-go zone, closed for access.
This project is proof that a close working relationship between contractor and manufacturer can help speed, simplify and streamline even the most complex reroofing projects.
It’s also proof that, just because a building is a historical landmark, it doesn’t need to stay rooted in the past. The new roof brings the Natural History Museum’s construction up to modern standards and expectations of performance and protection – as well as making it
more sustainable through solar panel installations on three of the elevations. Quality control was highly monitored by the contract manager and through BMI’s technical team undertaking weekly roofing inspections, which led to BMI approving the installation and workmanship, and issuing the 25-year guarantee.
So, just as the Natural History Museum at Tring’s contents help us reflect on the past, the building itself can also be a beacon of best practice as we look to the future.