A range of Flexcrete products has been used to restore Boathouse 4, an iconic building within Portsmouth Historic Dockyard which was constructed during the 1930’s rearmament period. It forms part of the UK’s maritime heritage and was used during World War II to construct the three man midget X-Craft submarine.
In 2014, Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust (PNBPT) received a £3.75m grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to transform the historic building into the Boatbuilding and Heritage Skills Training Centre. The Centre opened its doors to the public in April 2015 and a series of courses are delivered by the International Boatbuilding Training College Portsmouth and Highbury College. Visitors can view exhibitions and see traditional boatbuilding take place. The Centre is also offering bursaries for local unemployed people to complete a year’s full time traditional boatbuilding training.
Both internal and external concrete repairs were required. A large wall area also needed anti-carbonation protection and it was important that any products chosen were able to tolerate the chloride-laden environment.
Following thorough preparation, Steel Reinforcement Protector 841 was applied to the re-bars and a number of Flexcrete cementitious repair mortars were then applied in different areas. Fastfill was used in areas where rapid setting repairs were a priority and Monolite was used where an ultra high build, lightweight, non-shrink cementitious mortar was required. Both can be applied up to 100mm in a single application and only require the addition of clean water on-site. Monomix HD was used where outstanding abrasion resistance was required. As all of Flexcrete’s mortars are waterborne, non-hazardous and virtually odourless, they could be safely applied during the refurbishment works whilst other trades continued as normal.
Monodex Ultra – an anti-carbonation coating with a design life of 10 years before first maintenance – was subsequently used on all concrete elevations both internally and externally. Monodex Ultra is very fast-drying, allowing two coat applications on the same day and it offers a cost-effective solution for the internal or external refurbishment of buildings. It incorporates an active biocide which inhibits the growth of mould and lichens, ensuring the coating retains a clean, attractive appearance throughout its lifespan. Monodex Ultra is available in a range of attractive colours and white was chosen for this project.
The main contractor for the project was Interserve and Flexcrete products were applied by QST Construction Services Ltd.