Rochford Hospital, Essex

Rochford Hospital, Essex

Client: Southend University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
Type of works: Alumasc’s Aqualine high-performance gutters and Guardian vandal-proof downpipes combined to create an integrated rainwater handling system.

Innovative design and technical expertise from Alumasc were vital in securing the rainwater handling system for the new £25 million Rochford Hospital in Southend-on-Sea, Essex. The redevelopment of the site, part of which lies within a conservation area, involved a sensitive amalgamation of listed and other buildings of special interest. Alumasc’s Aqualine high-performance gutters were teamed with the company’s Guardian vandal-proof downpipes to create an integrated rainwater handling system that perfectly met the design brief.

The curved fascia of the entrance facade might have presented problems for conventional gutters, due to the need to incorporate a radius. Alumasc’s in-house design team came up with a simple solution that made full use of the Aqualine system’s quick and efficient dry joint qualities. The gutter was cut into 1m lengths to follow the building’s curve, presenting a pleasing but unobtrusive gutter profile whose unbroken form adds to the overall design aesthetic. Secret-fix brackets maintain this quality of uninterrupted linear integrity.

Aqualine is formed from extruded aluminium and is available in five traditional and contemporary styles and a range of profile sizes. 16 colours of factory-applied powder coat finishes are offered from stock, with bespoke options to order. Advanced design parameters ensure high efficiency, with optional fast-flow outlets to minimise the number of downpipes required.

The Alumasc Guardian downpipes specified also follow five different designs, and present equally advantageous design opportunities due to their smooth clean lines. Hidden spigot and wall-cleat fixing maintains the purity of form, and the range affords the ability to incorporate rainwater-handling components as a key architectural detail rather than a utilitarian necessity. Security wise, the circular or square profiles fit flush to the wall, thus offering no hand-holds for climbing. Both products are lightweight, easy to handle, quick to install and are 100% recyclable.

They play no small part in the overall appearance of the new hospital, and will continue to provide an efficient, low-maintenance rainwater handling system for the foreseeable future.

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