A three-storey development of fifteen apartments by Charter Homes (South West) Ltd at Derriford, on the outskirts of Plymouth, proved to be an ideal project for the company’s first experience of aircrete and the Thin Joint System.
“We certainly saw the benefits this technique can bring to a project,” says Charter Homes director Paul Thompson. “Building a single leaf wall of solid aircrete, with no wall-ties and using Celfix quick-setting mortar cut the time required for this part of the project by about half, compared to building a cavity wall with traditional mortar.”
In addition, aircrete’s excellent thermal insulation properties ensured that there were no problems achieving the demands of Part L of the Building Regulations.
“Being our first project using the form of construction it was something of a learning curve for us,” say Paul. “But the advantages are very clear and we will certainly be using this system again.”
Harford Court comprises a three-storey development of fifteen one, two and three-bedroom apartments varying in size from 424 to 1,024 sq ft. A condition of planning consent was that the development should look different from others on this main road into Plymouth, in an effort to reduce an appearance of urban sprawl.
The contemporary design includes wall facings, which are a mix of low-maintenance K-Rend coloured render and natural slate cladding, topped by an aluminium roof. Charter Homes decided to take advantage of this design by constructing the walls of solid, 300mm Celcon aircrete blocks using the Thin-Joint System with its quick-setting Celfix mortar.