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Catalyst Housing Association


This £500,000 project, completed in September 2019, comprised of the following:

  • Compartmentation: installation of fire compartmentation in loft areas between each flat and in some of the communal areas.
  • Fire doors: installation of new fire doors and overhaul of existing fire doors
  • Fire rated windows: installation of fire rated windows internally

Key challenges and outcomes

Working in care home/sheltered housing accommodation has inherent challenges, including minimising disruption to residents. Our teams have extensive experience in working with vulnerable residents and receive specialist training, e.g. working with individuals who have dementia.

Specific challenges on this project included:

  • Starting work as soon as possible, which we achieved four days after the first site visit by our Building Surveyor. We mobilised locally available directly employed resources which are fully trained by IFC.
  • Minimising noise for residents while working above their flats by liaising with residents via our dedicated RLO to agree the most convenient times to complete disruptive works.
  • Minimising disruption when working in communal areas with residents still requiring access. This was achieved by moving materials during quitter times of the day around key workers.
  • Installing safe access and egress. No materials or tools were left within these areas at any point during the works. A Fire Plan was completed by our in-house H&S Officer.
  • Working e.g. bricklaying, in very tight spaces with limited access. Lofts were boarded out to provide safe working platforms.
  • Weather conditions, as the project was undertaken in a very hot summer and loft space working areas were small. Temperatures were monitored and regular breaks were taken by our operatives.

Benefits of our approach

Starting work quickly, four days after the first site visit, which assisted the Client in correcting non-conformance with their building swiftly.
Completing works five weeks ahead of schedule which minimised costs and overall disruption.
Scheduling works to minimise the period for loft works, as a Fire Marshall was needed on site 24 hours a day until the loft works were complete, thus minimising associated costs.

All works were recorded on our Bolster system and Certified completion Certificates provided to the Client.

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