Icopal has provided a vandal resistant roofing solution to The Oval, a leisure centre and civic athletics stadium in Wirral. The system, which consists of the company’s Monarperm breathable membrane and Decra Oberon tiles, retains the building’s original character yet will help save the local council potentially thousands of pounds a year on repair costs.
The Oval building, which dates back to 1913 and was used in the main scene from the cult film Chariots of Fire, is famed for its iconic entrance. The centre, which is used by many local residents, including a neighbouring school, provides swimming, athletics, football, fitness, hockey, and tennis and squash facilities in addition to a multi-activity sports hall.
The roof of the main entrance to The Oval had seen years of continued vandalism causing damage to the clay tiles. In fact, the damage was so regular that over a two-year period, the local council calculated that there had been over £23,000 paid out on roof repairs.
600m2 of Monarperm 700 breather membrane was fitted as roof tile underlay on the roof and secured with 38 x 25mm battens. Manufactured from a highly vapour open film, core bonded between two layers of non-woven polypropylene, to provide the membrane with the correct balance between water tightness, vapour transmission and long term performance. As such, the membrane also features high tear and puncture resistance, making it the ideal choice for this project.
In addition, 600m2 of Decra Oberon tiles were also installed. Decra is a high quality, lightweight steel tile that delivers exceptional durability, with unrivalled protection against weather and vandalism. These protective features, combined with the product’s ability to replicate the look of the previous clay roof tiles, made it the ideal solution. An extra intermediate timber batten was also installed in the middle of each run of tiles to prevent damage from unwanted visitors to the roof. Furthermore, with an interlocking design that can be dry fixed quickly and efficiently, installation time and disruption to the daily running of the leisure centre was dramatically reduced.
Once the main roof area was complete, new matching ridge, hip and verge tiles were also installed, along with aluminium anti-climb rainwater goods to further reduce the risk of vandals gaining access.
MAC Roofing, an approved Decra roofing contractor, had completed numerous repairs to the roof over previous years and was asked to provide a long-term solution to eradicate continued damage. Lee Cavanagh, Director at MAC said: “Icopal’s Monarperm and Decra systems were an ideal combination of products when it came to the challenging requirements of The Oval. We already had a good relationship with the client from previous years of service and repairs, so it was our aim to work together to provide the best solution to help remove the need for any further repairs.”
With repair bills increasing from the constant vandalism, there was a real urgency for the work to be completed, although this posed a major problem for both client and contractor. It was essential that there was a quick turnaround, as the renovation work on the roof was also over the main route into the car park and leisure centre, which was to remain open to the public during the works. This would also cause disruption to the main entrance that was still in use by the school next door, which had over 600 children walking under it on a daily basis, combined with the high potential threat of vandalism during the renovation. Icopal’s products helped to reduce installation time and limit disruption to the public, allowing the renovation of the roof to be completed to an exceptionally high standard and with the least amount of disruption.
Neil Harrison, Technical Director at Icopal said: “This is a great example of Icopal’s products really coming into their own. We were able to provide a solution to a major problem for The Oval with a combination of products that met the performance criteria and provided resilience against a persistent problem of vandalism. The new system, along with anti-climb rainwater goods will give the roof a longer lifespan and significantly reduce maintenance and repair costs”