Thermoblock combats cold bridging for new leisure facilities at Fife Holiday Park

The construction of a new swimming pool and play park at a caravan and holiday lodge complex, set in a stunning location on the coast of Fife, is making full use of the unique insulating and load-carrying attributes offered by Marmox Thermoblocks.

Clayton Caravan Park is a well-established destination, just minutes from the historic town of St. Andrews with its world famous St. Andrews Links golf courses, which also offers visitors views and fishing opportunities along the River Eden. The new facilities have been designed by Montgomery Forgan Associates from nearby Cupar, while Pert Bruce Construction of Montrose is the main contractor for the prestigious and challenging project.

With its fully enclosed and well insulated steel framed structure, the new swimming pool and play park will offer year round enjoyment for not only those staying in the caravans and lodge homes, but also the wider public. A key element to this energy saving design is preventing cold-bridging occurring around the perimeter to the building’s in-situ reinforced concrete floor where it meets the external walls, with its 140mm thick block inner leaf, infilling the cold-rolled steel columns.

The site agent for Pert Bruce Construction, Mark Macpherson, commented:

“This is the first time I have seen the product, but the bricklayers found it quite straightforward to install and our company has also been using Thermoblock on a housing site in Brechin for Angus Council. While the 140mm wide units are being installed around the inner leaf of the building, the 100mm units form part of the perimeter wall to the pool both supporting the poolside slab and continuous with the insulation layer.”

Pert Bruce Construction is also making use of the Marmox MSP 360 sealant as an adhesive to complete the stepped overlay joints between the individual Thermoblock units. The thermoblocks are available in widths of 100, 140 or 215mm and are formed from sections of XPS (extruded polystyrene) encapsulating two rows of high strength, epoxy concrete mini-columns. These are attached at either end to the top and bottom layers of glass-fibre reinforced polymer concrete, to ensure a good bond with the rest of the structure. Crucially, a variety of details have been thermally modelled by the BRE to provide insulation values for use in SAP or other calculations avoiding the punishing ‘default’ figure.

The Clayton’s Caravan contract has consumed 465 of the 140mm wide Thermoblocks plus a further 125 of the 100mm version. All of the Thermoblocks and Marmox Multipurpose adhesive were supplied through the Dundee branch of Minster Insulation.

Project Architect Joe Narsapur of Montgomery Forgan Associates explained:

“We have been specifying Thermoblock for probably five years now in response to being asked to detail cold-bridging solutions where it is required by Building Standards councils in particular are asking for it. This is the first large project where we have seen the product used.

“Thermoblock was the first product we became aware of that offers the high load-carrying capabilities through the incorporation of miniature concrete columns within an insulation. I think it will get used more and more in the future.”

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