Work programme and delivery
In February 2022, Elkins Construction began a project to carry out external refurbishments to Brandon Estate for Southwark Council. Constructed in 1958, some areas of the estate were showing signs of damage and deterioration and required repairs and replacements. The work was split across three locations – Olney Road, Lorrimore Gardens and Forsyth Gardens.
One of the most significant parts of the project was the replacement of the roofs across all three sites. This involved stripping the current roof and installing new slate tiles, rafter rolls and guttering. Insulation in the loft areas had worn down and was no longer effective, so new loft insulation was installed to improve energy efficiency, preventing heat from being lost through the roof of the buildings.
Areas identified for repairs included communal asphalt walkways and the buildings’ concrete and brickwork. Once repairs were completed, external decorations were carried out to tidy up the appearance.
Other aspects of the work, such as window replacements, were determined by a survey carried out to assess their condition prior to the work taking place. The Elkins team also conducted CCTV drain surveys to communal gullies and dye tests to private residents’ balconies, to detect any problems in the drainage system that needed to be fixed.
Also included in the project scope, were a number of fire risk assessment improvements. These included the installation of a new LD2 system incorporating fire/smoke detectors in all communal areas that form part of the escape routes and rooms in private residences that present a fire risk, including kitchens and main living areas. New emergency lighting was also installed in the loft and tank rooms.
As is often the case with this type of work, some additional required repairs were identified during the course of the project, including the removal of old coal chutes, lightning protection and renewed asphalt to private balconies on some flats. These were added to the scope and completed before the final handover.
Elkins faced a number of challenges – inclement weather in the form of rain and extreme temperatures, as well as disruption caused by train strikes – which prevented some work from being completed at the scheduled times. Despite this, the team worked hard to make up time, keeping stakeholders, including LBS and the estate’s residents up-to-date with progress at all times.