Construction News

Mon June 21 2021

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Salford tower block contract boosts brick slip manufacturer

6 May A manufacturer of brick cladding panels is looking to expand after landing its biggest ever single contract, worth £1.5m.

Stephen Waring, founder and owner of Monolith Brick & Stone
Stephen Waring, founder and owner of Monolith Brick & Stone

Monolith’s BrickPlus: Pro system – non-combustible, rapid-fit brick slips – are now being used to clad Regent Plaza, a trio of apartment blocks in Salford, being built by Sourced Construction Group.

Monolith sales and marketing manager Edd Wilson said: “In all they are using 20,000 square metres of our brick slips which means it’s the biggest single project in our history.

“They’re using three different types of our brick slips – one a buff colour, a striking red one and a black engineering brick as well, so it’s a really great advert for the flexibility of BrickPlus Pro.”

Monolith Brick & Stone Ltd was set up in St. Asaph, North Wales, by Stephen Waring, founder and owner of the Greenthumb lawn treatment franchise business.

BrickPlus: Pro comprises panels of 12 lightweight brick slips that are fused into a mesh to replicate the look of any existing bricks or stone façade. The advantage is speed of installation. It has an A1 fire rating and is classified as 100% non-combustible.

Stephen Waring said: “Class A fire retardants have a flame spread rating of between zero and 25 meaning which means this system is effective against severe fire exposure. This product helps alleviate understandable concerns about safety following the Grenfell Tower disaster. It provides the peace of mind for developers, specifiers and of the course the public are looking for and that certainly seems to be the case with the increase in demand for this product.”

CGI of Salford's Regent Plaza
CGI of Salford's Regent Plaza

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The BrickPlus: Pro system was given new momentum after Monolith teamed up with Warrington-based Architectural Facades, part of The Brickability Group, which brought Monolith on board for the Salford development.

“The potential is huge,” Edd Wilson said. “We’re now getting really serious enquiries from some big construction companies and we’re getting them daily at the moment, thanks to the industry presence being grown alongside Architectural Facades. Our production methods are easy to scale up very quickly so we can increase our output to meet the increasing demand.”

Monolith has specified on a further £30m+ projects coming up in the next two years. The demand means that it is already starting to outgrow its factory in Denbigh where 20 people are employed. Stephen Waring is planning to open a second production facility and  is aiming to create a 75 more jobs in Denbighshire.

Monolith sales and marketing manager Edd Wilson  (left) with general manager Phil Gaffney
Monolith sales and marketing manager Edd Wilson (left) with general manager Phil Gaffney

He added: "The beauty of this system is that it can work for listed buildings as well and we have already worked on the renovation of the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts building where we replaced the damaged facade with matching architectural enhancements.

“The speed of application is very good for contractors because it can reduce their labour costs and increase their profit margins which is important in the construction industry in this time. Instead of fitting individual brick slips one-by-one, we have created a way of producing a pre-populated carrier with 12 brick slips on each one. That means their application is 12 times faster.”

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