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Carillion and AC Flooring choose Howe Green Covers for a heavy-duty and tamper-resistant solution to accessing underfloor drainage and services at Bristol's £430million state of the art Southmead Hospital.

Southmead Hospital

Over 100 Howe Green Visedge Access Covers installed at Bristol's new Southmead Hospital.


With the floors of the new superhospital facing heavy foot traffic from millions of visitors, patients and staff each year, a heavy-duty and tamper-resistant solution was required to provide access to underfloor drainage and services. The Visedge range provided a cost-effective and low maintenance solution for main contractor Carillion and AC Flooring, who carried out the installation throughout the new Brunel Building, named after Bristol engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.

Easy to install and unobtrusive in design, Howe Green's Visedge Covers are double-sealed to meet the highest standards of hygiene and security. The range was developed for use with flexible sheet flooring systems and its excellent resistance in highly trafficked areas has been proven around the world. Unlike similar products, the Visedge Series also allows sheet flooring, including PVC or linoleum, to be locked into the cover and frame by hot welding to a PVC section sealed to the surface. This creates a permanent joint and eliminates water ingress and peeling which can cause a health and safety hazard.

Howe Green manufactures a comprehensive range of Access Cover solutions for floors, walls and ceilings, including bespoke specifications, with no added premium to pay. Their 7500 Series Stainless Steel Access Covers were also supplied for the Southmead project. These were installed in ground floor areas of the hospital, where a heavier loading for service vehicles and bulky medical equipment was required. 7500 Series panels have a standard depth of 75mm with a minimal show-edge for a seamless look. They are suitable for internal and external paved areas and fire rated options are available to BS476: Part 20: 1987.

Built by main contractor Carillion and designed by BDP, the Southmead Hospital was constructed for North Bristol NHS Trust complete with 800 beds, 24 theatres, patient gardens, a public square, a helipad and multi-storey car park. With Howe Green's robust and maintenance-free Access Covers installed throughout the building, both client and contractor can be reassured that the underfloor drainage services will remain safely concealed and that gaining access for routine or emergency maintenance will be reliably straightforward for the lifetime of the building.

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