Fforestfach Transport Depot, Asbestos Overcladding

Garland Technical Manager

Approved Contractor

  • Cladright Industrial Roofing & Cladding Limited

The Fforestfach site is a busy passenger transport depot for the Local Authority, managed by the Place Directorate, serving a variety of users. 

Severely weathered and corroded, the original 1,800 sqm roof on the depot comprised of old asbestos corrugated sheets that had degraded over the years, to the point that heavy rain resulted in overflowing gutters and severe internal leaks to the building. 

Garland UK Technical Manager, Dale Thomas, was asked by the Swansea Councils Property Maintenance team to carry out a full detailed roof survey and specify a waterproofing solution that would overcome the existing asbestos challenges of the depot roof and upgrade the external site offices, whilst minimising any disruption to the daily operations of the active depot.

Quick Facts

Garland System


Technical Manager

Dale Thomas

With a strict budget to oversee the refurbishment works, the challenge was to ensure that the asbestos roof was handled sensitively, in the most cost-effective way.

Asbestos roof removal can be extremely expensive and labour intensive, causing longer construction times and increased disruption to the site. Alternatively, asbestos over-cladding and encapsulating is a fast, safe and far cheaper option than costly asbestos removal. 

Dale’s proposal was to utilise Garland UK’s R-MER CLAD metal roof system. Overcladding the roof and leaving the existing asbestos roof in place, would minimise the need to interfere with the asbestos roof structure, mitigate significant levels of waste to landfill and ensure the bus depots’ day-to-day activity would not be affected. 

Working closely with the client to meet their budgetary requirements and schedule of works, Dale specified an R-MER CLAD built-up roof system for the depot roof and the separate site office cladding works to be carried out over 3 phases, to ensure the project was delivered efficiently.

The roof was fully evaluated before works commenced, to ensure that the structure was suitable for the new R-MER CLAD system. 

Once on-site, Dale monitored the progress of the project with weekly site visits, appointing Garland Approved Contractor, Cladright Industrial Roofing & Cladding Limited, to install the R-MER CLAD system for the depot roof and wall cladding of the site offices.

The roof was prepared by adding a VCL as a high-performance air and water barrier, before applying metal top hats in line with the purlins. To improve the building’s thermal performance, galvanised Z profiles were attached to the top hats to allow for sufficient height for the installation to be put in.

The R-MER CLAD profiles were made to measure and cut in the factory to ensure that the installation speed on site was seamless. To tackle the issue of the depot’s overflowing gutters, rainfall calculations were made to ensure that the new galvanised gutters and R-MER trimline gutter capacity were sufficient.

For the site office wall cladding, Coloured R-MER CLAD profiles were installed for a complete aesthetic transformation and increase in thermal performance, making a warm and comfortable working environment for the depot staff and visitors.

The Fforestfach Transport Depot remained open throughout the refurbishment project, where clear communication and detailed scheduling across the 2 phases between Dale, the depot staff, Swansea Council and Clad Right ensured that the buses could operate without any interference inside and out and that the Approved Contractor could work safely at all times.

Asbestos can be a challenging material to deal with. However, thanks to Dale’s expert technical support and knowledge this risk was mitigated. The versatility of the R-MER CLAD system ensured the asbestos roof has been covered safely, whilst considerably reducing our client’s costs and environmental impact by avoiding landfill.

The Council adds

‘We have developed a great working partnership with Garland UK, where their expert technical advice, budget management and range of systems has given us tailored solutions across our diverse portfolio of building assets.’