HERITAGE | Rope Access
Working on beautiful historic buildings is a passion for us here at Highlife. We offer a complete package from inspection through to restoration and an aftercare maintenance plan. Our experiences working with Churches, Castles, Town Halls and other old buildings has honed our skills in the art of treading carefully, and by following a strict ethical code we have learned to operate in a manner which respects the importance of these valued structures.
From straight forward inspections of specific problems, to comprehensive quinquennial reports detailing the overall condition of your building, we can provide rapid and thorough inspections when the alternatives are often time consuming and expensive.
The dark art of lime pointing is overlooked by many, and understood by few. Drawing on years of experience using both NHL and quicklime based mortars, we work hard to make sure the mortars we use are properly selected to perform as they need to, whilst being sympathetic to the building. We never cut corners and always make sure we both apply and tend to all lime pointing properly, to ensure all of the benefits of a breathable and flexible mortar, whilst minimising the possibility of any associated risks.
Ruined arches, loose stones, and unstable walls are all common on historic monuments, and they often require the installation of metal fixings to make them stable. From small scale stainless pins to systems such as CINTEC anchors, we can find bespoke solutions to safely access and install a breadth of stabilisation solutions, often at a fraction of the cost of scaffolding.
Buildings such as churches are often highly exposed to the elements, making them vulnerable to storm damage. Here, rope access really comes into its own, allowing us to conduct quick and cost effective repairs of hard to access and potentially dangerous problems.
Whether the lead on your building has been damaged by a storm, or has just started to tire through age, we undertake all aspects of lead work, ensuring that all repairs are completed to the highest quality.
Pinnacles, parapets, balustrades and partially ruined walls are often liable to becoming unstable. We will go to great lengths to properly secure any hazards, whether temporarily whilst other works are being approved, or as a permanent solution.
Sometimes there really is no alternative to rope access. These are the sorts of places which often get pushed aside with thoughts about the difficulty or even impossibility of access. With a wealth of experience in many different work environments, we can find bespoke solutions to any of your access needs, even places previously deemed as impossible to reach without a crane or similarly expensive solution.
Many historic buildings are packed with ferrous material which becomes weathered and rusts, often causing major structural damage. In hard to reach places such as pinnacles and church steeples, this damage can lead to highly expensive repairs. But using minimalist scaffolding techniques in conjunction with rope access can dramatically reduce these costs, allowing you to undertake works which previously seemed impossible to fund.
On historic buildings areas less travelled often attract nesting birds. Over time this can be destructive for the building and can lead to further damage, if for example drainage is blocked. Clearing and making areas inaccessible for birds will save on more expensive works in the future.
Over time buildings are subjected to the elements and begin to look tired, from weathering, plant growth, and often pollution. Using low impact cleaning system Highlife can make old buildings feel new again, removing decades of filth whilst preserving the fragile materials below.
All buildings suffer wear and tear over the years. From gutter repairs to slipped slates and damaged lightning conductors, we undertake all aspects of general building maintenance, both indoors and out.
It is not uncommon for the core of an old wall to become a void as the pressures of weather and age gradually wash the binder and aggregate out of old mortar. In these cases, using a quicklime based grout to fill the void ensures microporous continuation between the skins of a wall, allowing the fabric of the building to 'breath,' and function as it was intended to when it was built.
As a result of weathering, or often due to the application of cementitious pointing and renders, building stones are liable to become damaged. Though often seen as a last resort, we are able to install replacement stones when the existing masonry is deemed unsafe or irreparable.
Churches are often surrounding by trees, and as a result their gutters often get blocked by leaves in the autumn, which can in turn lead to leaks and other more serious problems. We can provide safe and cost effective clearance services of even the most hard to reach gutters on high level stepped roofs.
Over the years as pointing degrades, plants inevitably find their way into the cracks. Left untended, these can start to cause serious structural problems. We make the effort to ensure that all plants have been removed right down to the root, and treat all cleared areas with biocide to deter the possibility of regrowth.
The wooden elements of a building will generally weather much faster than the surrounding stone. From clock face surrounds to lintels, gutters and window frames, we can repair, replace, or refurbish hard to access wooden structures.
Whether the lightning conductors have become detached from the building, or the rods themselves have become damaged or unstable, we can neatly repair or replace any of these elements.
This can come in many forms. We have undertaken installations ranging from supportive structural steel to event advertising materials, lighting and many more. In those hard to reach places scaffolding or MEWPs may be impossible. Highlife Rope access will endeavour to find a low impact, quick and easy solution.
From single awkward to reach panes of glass, to full scale industrial glazing works, the Highlife team have a range of experience across the glazing industry. We offer a bespoke service which allows us to source glass to match the existing panes on any building, for a low impact result.