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Victorian properties structurally secured

Client: UK Youth Hostel Association
Location: Norfolk
Approved Installer: JB Specialist Refurbishment
Reference No: CS051

Before a pair of semi-detached Victorian town houses could be converted into accommodation by the UK Youth Hostel Association, both properties required a variety of structural faults to be rectified. Due to the number of different problems and their various causes a detailed survey and repair programme was needed and repair specialists Helifix Ltd were chosen as they could provide a comprehensive survey and design service, proven concealed repair systems and a well established, local, approved professional installer.

The twin two storey properties, with attic conversions and rear extensions, are built from brick and red carstone. They were suffering from bay window detachment, brick arch failures, cracking above various window openings following window replacement and the installation of inadequate new lintels, brick quoin separation from stone at corners of the building and a lack of lateral restraint.

To provide reliable long term solutions to these faults, JB Specialist Refurbishment Ltd undertook the installation of various special purpose, stainless steel, Helifix repair systems. To reinforce and secure the masonry by creating structural beams, pairs of long length HeliBars were bonded into channelled-out mortar beds along both side and rear elevations and also across the main gable ends. To provide lateral restraint BowTie HD's were driven into the first floor timber joists sides along both gable walls and BowTies were installed into the joists ends on both the front and rear elevations before being bonded into the masonry walls. HeliBars were used to secure the separating window bays and reinforce the lintels while grouted CemTies were installed to secure the quoins and pin the arches back into the HeliBeams.

Once the repairs were completed and made good there was virtually no evidence of the major works that had been undertaken. The concealed Helifix products stabilised the properties and were sympathetic to the aesthetics while allowing normal structural movement and avoiding 'hard spots' or load path transfer.