Here at Highlife Rope Access we're fortunate enough to work on a lot of beautiful churches, amongst other historic buildings. Whilst the work we do is almost as varied as the churches themselves, there are certain jobs we wind up doing more than others. A lot of this work comes down to repairing the damage done by harsh winters, and whilst certain faults are unavoidable, there is much that can be done to protect a church prior to winter coming around.
Once upon a time, winter was cold for months on end, but with the recent trend for milder winters bouncing around the zero mark, the effects of freeze thaw are more pronounced than ever. What this means in practice is that water will find its way into any cracks, either in stones themselves or in failing mortar, expand as it freezes, and then melt away leaving a larger flaw for more water to find its way into next time around. Making sure all masonry flaws are dealt with before winter comes around is a surefire way of saving money in the long run, and the speed and precision of rope access pointing and masonry repairs makes it perfectly suited for this task.
Making sure all joints are well pointed before the winter arrives will prevent further damage from occurring
The warmer winters of late have also brought with them a trend for greater winds, causing havoc to roofing tiles and slates. No matter what we do, slates will always be blown free from any roof over time, but making sure all missing slates are replaced before the wind starts up again, and securing all lead flashings and coverings, will ensure that further damage is minimised, while protecting the internal timber from months of rain.
Of course, some issues are more obvious, such as gutters and downpipes filling with leaves in the autumn. If gutters are not allowed to run freely, the water will spill over the edge of the gutter, often finding its way in under roofing slates, causing unseen issues internally. At Highlife we can provide a comprehensive gutter clearing service, either by individual booking, or scheduled as an ongoing yearly event, so that you don't have to remember to call us in again.
Even the most hard to access gutters or stepped roofs are no problem for us to reach, and with the Highlife Rope Access winter MOT, you can be sure that your building will survive even the harshest of winters with an absolute minimum of damage.