The Faversham Brewery, the oldest working brewery in the UK, recently undertook a restoration project to restore their Brew House and enhance the key architectural features that had been lost, including the original cast iron gutters. Provided by Marley Alutec, the Faversham Brewery’s rainwater system replicates the original Victorian aesthetic, whilst enjoying all the benefits of marine grade aluminium.
Shepherd Neame is Britain's oldest brewer - and while 1698 is the Brewery's official founding date, there is clear evidence that its heritage pre-dates even this period. Located in Kent, beer production has taken place on this site for centuries and whilst Shepherd Neame’s dedication to brewing great beer has never wavered, the Victorian brew house was in need of restoration.
During this time, the building had lost some of its key features - including the original cast iron gutters, which had been replaced with modern non-characteristic guttering. Re-establishing the heritage characteristics of the building was important to the history of the brewery and Jonathan Arthur, Senior Surveyor for the Brewery, felt strongly that a complete restoration was required.
Jonathan commented: “After looking at several products, we approached Marley Alutec to help specify and design a suitable aluminium rainwater system for the restoration. The high quality range of products on offer and the benefits of using a marine grade aluminium system immediately impressed us.”
Alutec Area Sales Manager, Simon Lepine advised on the project and recommended Moulded Ogee from the Traditional range. Manufactured to original British Standard cast iron dimensions, this traditional style bolted selection of guttering is powder coated to mimic the appearance of cast iron gutters whilst being significantly lighter and easier to install.
In addition to the ease of installation, there is little to no maintenance across the lifespan of the product. It doesn’t require painting and needs minimal cleaning, giving the product a low lifetime cost.
The project was also ideal for Marley Alutec’s new 102 Tudor Downpipe, so much so that planned production was brought forward to accommodate requirements.
SG Refurbishment was contracted to complete the installation, the first contractor to work with the 102 Tudor Downpipe. The Alutec team was also on-hand to help address any installation queries.
“From quote to final product, Marley Alutec was readily available and bent over backwards to help out,” said Gary Gillett, Company Director for SG Refurbishment. “Simon Lepine came to site a number of times, and any issues or queries we had were resolved quickly. The team also kept us fully up to date, with lead times and delivery schedules.
“The installation process was an absolute pleasure – everything arrived as ordered, and the systems were very quick and easy to install.”
Jonathan Arthur oversaw the installation, and worked closely with Simon and Gary during this time. During the restoration – which also included the replacement of the roof, heritage joinery, stone and brickwork restoration, decorating and the complete refurbishment of the Brew Houses original Mash Tuns 1A and 1B - the brewery remained operational and open for tours and events. This meant ensuring the safety and protection of brewers, visitors and office staff.
Marley Alutec and SG Refurbishment complied with the required safety standards, protecting occupants of the building during the extensive refurbishment and allowed the brewery to continue its large scale operations.
The refurbishment has been completed and the brewery now benefits from a rainwater system that is sympathetic to the original Victorian appearance, whilst requiring little to no maintenance and keeping the historic building free from water ingress.
“The finish is absolutely perfect,” said Jonathan. “We’ve had no problems with the rainwater systems since installation and they look great. The contractor did a fantastic job, and any architectural issues were solved swiftly with the combined efforts of Gary and Simon.
“Due to the hard work of everyone involved, Shepherd Neame has been restored to its stunning historical beauty.”