Re-cladding of the Thames Tower block in Leicester is now under way. The project will see removal of combustible cladding from this 14-storey apartment building, to be replaced with cladding of Euroclass Combustibility rating of A2 or better.

Studio Four is working with Façade Remedial Consultants in the re-cladding of over 30 similar residential tower blocks around the UK, with funding from the government’s Building Safety Fund and Levy. Acting as Principal Designers, we are helping clients comply with their Health & Safety duties under the CDM 2015 Regulations.

Thames Tower sits on a 3-storey podium, with a basement car park beneath. We ascertained that the podium roof was unlikely to bear the weight of standard scaffold base plates, having noted that previous scaffolding for re-cladding in 2007 was installed using an additional bespoke temporary support system running from the third floor level right down through all levels to the basement.

At that time these three levels were unoccupied offices, but they have subsequently been converted into more apartments, so this method is no longer an option. A temporary scaffold support structure of beams is therefore being installed across the podium roof, with supports located over the top of existing structural columns below. This coordination between Client, Project Manager, D&B Contractor, Scaffolding Contractor and specialist Structural Engineers is an example of the Pre-construction activities required under the CDM 2015 Regulations.

Scaffold beam photos courtesy of Alumet.