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Accrington Town Hall, Lancashire

"Doff" Thermal Cleaning Stonework on Accrington Town Hall & Market Hall, Lancashire

This project involved the Thermal or "Doff" cleaning of Accrington Town Hall in Lancashire for the Queens Diamond Jubilee. As a specialist cleaning contractors we used a high temperature steam system to remove growth from the facade of the Hall.

 

Stone Cleaning in Lancashire

Our specialist cleaning contractors used a large scissor lift to access the high levels of the town hall. All our operatives are IPAF approved, with experience in the use of scissor lifts & aerial platforms. We installed barriers & safety sign age the area below the platform. There was also a banks man at the ground to ensure the public did not enter the work area. The protection to the public was of our up most priority.

The Stonework on the building had growth material where shaded from sunlight. Our task was to remove this growth using our specialist techniques. The stone on the old listed town hall building is soft yellow sand stone. Our Restoration Contractors working on this project in Accrington, Lancashire worked out of hours to complete the areas with high public access. This would mean our Contractors had to work in the evenings & weekend.

Stone Cleaning Accrington Town Hall

The thermal system or "Doff" / Thermal use's super heated water to 150 oC. The system uses a normal water supply which is taken into the high pressure pump unit and the pressure increased to the required level before entering the Hotbox.

The super heated steam of the system allows it to remove the staining & growth from the building. The steam will also kill off the spores of the growth. We run our system on kero or diesel. The stonework on the Listed building was in fairly good condition. We did not want any damage to the stonework. Sometimes if the stonework is in very poor condition the pressure of the steam can cause erosion.

Restoration Contractors Stone Cleaning
The steam/superheated water will remove moss, algae, fungi and other biological matter and will also kill off spores. This means there’s then no need to use a chemical biocide during the removal process or as a protection against further biological activity. During the stone cleaning works we also noted all areas of the building that required repair work or that would require stone work repair in the future. We did not any stonework repair in our contract as we only had the brief of the stone cleaning. We do how ever offer a Stone Restoration Services we have trained stonemasons employed by us who undertake stone masonry repairs. The Stone Restoration includes Indenting, Resin Repairs, Cleaning, Carving, Institute Repairs. Most stonework restoration works  include a element of lime pointing. We have undertaken a large amount of lime pointing on many Listed Building and Traditional Buildings including farmhouses, cottages, churches, estates, castles & monuments.
High Level Stone Cleaning

"DOFF" Thermal cleans stonework and masonry using high temperature steam. When the temperature in the system is high the pressure on the surface being cleaned is very gentle and the volume of water is low. The surface is therefore not saturated and will be dry within minutes.

We also undertake many other stone cleaning technique Our Farrow system is a low pressure wet cleaning unit using for removing paint, soot & other materials from all kinds of background not just stonework. It uses compressed air with a mixture of media & water supplied from a blast pot. The system is completely dustless un like sand blasting. The system is completely adjustable so we can clean the most delicate stonework without damaging the sub straight to removing industrial coatings from steel. Our Farrow Sandblasting system is trailer mounted so is totally mobile.

Not Sand Blasting Stone Cleaning

Super heated steam cleaning stonework at Accrington Town Hall, Lancashire. Our team of highly skilled Restoration Contractors can undertaken Stone Cleaning works on any Listed Building or Traditional Stone building.

We also offer a Sandblasting Stone Cleaning Service. We mostly use this for the Restoration of period ironwork like railings, tanks & cast iron guttering. Our sand blasting can be done on site our at our yard. We select our media depending on the surface that requires removing. We do not use silica based media's. Sandblasting on the town hall in Accrington, Lancashire was not the best method to use as it would have eroded & damaged the stonework.

Restroation of Stonework

Once our specialist team of cleaning contractors had "Doff" Thermal cleaned the building it was dressed for the diamond jubilee.

We offer a few chemical stone cleaning systems. The first is a paint softener that is applied using a brush. This is left on the paint for around 5 minutes then using a high pressure power washer to rinse of the softened paint. The Stonework is not damaged using this Chemical Stone cleaning technique. The restoration contractors have to use PPE when using the paint softener.

Market Hall Stone Cleaning
The client also asked us to undertake some stone cleaning works to the Accrington Market Hall. This Listed building had become "dirty" over time. We used the same stone cleaning techniques as the Town Hall. We also undertake stone cleaning using a chemical that "Bleaches" the stone works back to its original colour. This is very good on stone surfaces that have heavy deposits of soot or carbon, this stone cleaning technique will not damage the stone in any way but does require water off well. Trying to remove soot and carbon deposits on stonework with Sandblasting can leave the stonework damages and eroded. Chemical cleaning of Stonework's is very good on carved and decorative stone
Stone Cleaning Restoration
This shows the front of the Accrington Market Hall. You can see the facade is heavily carved stonework. The other stone cleaning technique that we could have used was a soap based cleaning agent. This is applied neat to the stonework and left on for half an hour. I may be needed to apply more than one a application. After this time we use our DOFF stone cleaning system to remove the agent from the stone work. It will not remove a carbon or soot build up, but does very well on oily & dirty stonework. We choose not to use it on this project as it could have made it slippery around the work area.

 

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