Much time and effort is put into the planning for the conservation of historic buildings, the means of which are addressed by the use of scaffolding to allow access to the works in hand. Where non-historic buildings are concerned, damage caused by improperly erected scaffolding and temporary works, whilst being tiresome and expensive, can often be repaired without serious harm. Where historic buildings are concerned, any damage is permanent and significant details may be lost.

Independent scaffolds which are ideal for use on historic buildings, have to be erected on a “stand-alone basis”. This means the scaffolding cannot touch the building structure at any point. Due to the stand-alone basis required for heritage scaffolding, extra precautions must be taken to ensure the scaffold is safe and secure to allow works to proceed. This will normally consist of a buttress being erected to the independent scaffold to offer support and stability.

Basic scaffolds can be designed by the scaffold contractors but anything more complicated should be outsourced to a designer so calculations can be made. More advanced scaffolds must take ‘loadings’, spans and wind factors into account and this requires a professional to ensure scaffold can be erected safely. It’s very important that prior thought be given to the location of scaffold foundations, where tubes can and cannot go, and where decked working platforms will be required to allow the works to proceed.

Ideal Scaffolding (Southern) Ltd have been honoured to work with the National Trust on many of their prestigious buildings including West Clandon, The Vyne, Hinton Ampner and Mottisfont Abbey.