Riddel Hall, Queens University Belfast

Project: Riddel Hall, Queens University Belfast

Riddel Hall, a landmark Grade B1 listed building forming part of Queens University Belfast, has undergone major redevelopment into a world class Postgraduate and Executive Education Centre. Alumasc’s Heritage Cast Aluminium rainwater system with bespoke hoppers and finish, has helped retain the architectural integrity of the £10m project, which has been Highly Commended in the Conservation Category of both the RICS 2012 Awards and the RSUA Design Awards.

Riddel Hall was established as a hall of residence for female students in 1913 and much effort has been made to ensure the refurbishment remained sympathetic to the original building fabric, including the replacement of its original cast iron rainwater system. The old system had perished and Alumasc Heritage Cast Aluminium system was specified for its ability to replicate the look of the original cast iron system, whilst offering modern performance, longevity and low maintenance.

Alumasc worked closely with Hamilton Architects and the main contractor, Tracey Brothers to ensure the system met every detail of the project’s requirements. The system was complex as the building presented a high number of dormer windows, with many hoppers and downpipes.  The architects provided a sample of original components from the building and Alumasc produced 45 replica hoppers, together with with downpipes, earbelts and bracketry which were fixed into position through the original circular openings in the sandstone string courses. Alumasc also produced a special RAL8004m finish in Copper Brown to match the colour of the original rainwater system.

Neil Moore of Hamilton Architects commented:  “Every aspect of the refurbishment, including the Aluminium rainwater system, was carefully planned to ensure the success of this first class post-graduate and executive education facility.”

The Heritage range is ideal for traditionally designed buildings and can be used as a direct replacement of cast iron, while offering all the benefits of modern aluminium casting techniques and factory finish. The system has minimal maintenance requirements and is lightweight, durable and easy to handle and fix.

The moulded profile specified for Riddel Hall was one of five profiles that are available in the range, alongside a choice of imperial sizes and RAL colours to suit all projects.