CENTRAL HALL, UNIVERSITY OF YORK CONTRACTOR: WILLIAM BIRCH & SONS LTDThe refurbishment of the University of York’s Central Hall required a scaffold solution to overcome an interesting combination of challenges. One of the University’s most prominent buildings, it sits on the edge of a lake in the heart of the University’s Heslington campus and plays host to concerts, examinations and graduation ceremonies with it’s large auditorium.

The buildings location and unusual octagonal shape which cantilevers out from the base around its perimeter meant the scaffold required a specially designed solution. The team from SAY worked closely with their engineer and provided a scaffold that fully incorporated the requirements of the main contractor whilst at the same time allowed the university to still have full use of the building when the refurbishment took place. ... the scaffold required a specially designed solutionThe scaffold followed the profile of the building and cantilevered out over the lake with beams allowing a further 4 lifts to be constructed above. Enclosed walkways were built into the scaffold at ground level running through the scaffold and around the base which allowed tutors & students access and kept fire exits clear providing a necessary means of escape. The campus lake provides a habitat for many different species of birds, so special care was taken whilst working over the lake and once complete the scaffold was fully encapsulated with a protective shrink wrap sheeting to prevent the possibility of any building materials contaminating the water.

Deadlines were tight and the program required flexibility to work around the University’s exam timetable. SAY provided the site team to ensure all works were completed on time and the scaffold was dismantled on schedule and with the site clear of all materials ready for the University’s graduation ceremony. Having delivered on every aspect of the contract, SAY Scaffolding Ltd has since gone on to secure further contracts with William Birch & Sons Ltd.

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