Rutherford Appleton Laboratory

New facility support building

Rutherford Appleton Laboratory

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The brief

Briggs & Forrester Engineering Services provided the design, supply and installation of mechanical, electrical and public health services in a new building used for the processing & safe disposal of hazard waste. The building consists of two main halls (test & handling) with four levels of support offices.

Services provided include sanitary ware, above ground foul & surface water drainage, domestic water services including external MCWS, natural gas including external mains, compressed air, space heating via gas radiant panels to halls, VRF to offices, air conditioning, ventilation and BMS controls (Trend), HV/LV services, generator, UPS, internal lighting & power, external lighting, fire/PA/security alarms, CCTV, data, voice, klaxon alarms installation, DDA & lightning protection systems.

Project summary...

Service value


Contract period

10 months




Willmott Dixon


Oxford Architects

Added Value

Maximising useable floor area was critical to the end users hence all distribution was carried out at high level, up to 22m in places. The main roof, due to its span, had little loading capacity therefore Gripple were invited to work with the design team to provide a solution for the support all services at roof level. The Gripple Cantenary system was then delivered in kit form with specific drawings & instructions for each scenario, together with comprehensive on-site training.

At lower levels perimeter services were supported on pre-fabricated cantilever brackets designed to take the extensive load of the numerous armoured cables & associated containment, together with compressed air & process water pipework, these were designed, supplied & installed by Billson Steel Fabricators & included pre-drilled holes for the fixing of the described services.

Natural ventilation of the main halls was provided via cladding replacement louvres, with integral motorised dampers. Each louvre had to be individually measure prior to manufacture by Gilberts due to the inconsistent tolerance’s in the steel frame. The dampers were pre-fixed to the rea of the louvres, with the entire panel be fixed by the cladding contractor as they carried out their works.

What we did for this project...

We have a fully integrated design and build capability across the group, including 3D coordination and Building Information Modelling. By developing the design and being fully involved in the early stages of a project, we can provide timely design solutions and verification.

The group provides a range of specialist skills encompassing engineering, design, installation, and maintenance. The combined experience, knowledge and expertise of all five divisions enables the group to develop and implement fully-integrated solutions for some of the most complex and demanding mechanical, electrical and public health engineering installations.

We guarantee a smooth handover transition with the project team remaining the main point of contact, the development of commissioning and training plan and regular visits from our team in the months after practical completion.

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