Raising the roof at St Michael’s tower

Just Regional
Jun 3, 2014 2 mins read

Hopkins Homes today undertook a major heavy lift operation at the water tower that was part of the original St Michael’s hospital in Aylsham.

Built by TH Blyth in 1923, the structure is being converted into just one magnificent dwelling spanning over 7 floors, which features a glass enclosed staircase affixed to the external wall as well as a lift running through the centre of the building.

The final major build on this project will see the existing water tanks on the roof being replaced with a glass sunroom, weighing some 15 tonne, and being craned into position atop the building at a height of 18 metres.

The logistics of an exercise of this scale determines that the removal of the water tanks and subsequent lift and positioning of the new sunroom be undertaken within the same time frame and, given the weight and height involved, specialist crane and crew have been engaged to undertake this highly skilled and precise procedure.

The Gove GMK 5220 crane, weighing 220 tonne, arrived on site under escort with a further 100 tonne of ballast.

The tower forms part of what is now Bure Place, a beautiful restoration of an architecturally stunning Victorian listed building by John Donthorn, one of the founding fathers of the prestigious Royal Institute of British Architects.

Dating from the mid 1800’s, many original features like castellated parapets, ogee plain-tiled domes, large stone mullion and transom windows have been renovated and incorporated into this historical building that now combines bygone opulence with elegant new style to provide a bespoke collection of luxurious houses and apartments.

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