Pipework Project

In 2011, the Estates Committee commissioned a report by Engineering Services Partnership to undertake a feasibility study for the possible replacement of the heating and hot/cold domestic water systems at Rivermead Court. The purpose of the report was to establish the optimum solution for the replacement of the existing heating, domestic hot and cold water distribution pipework and to establish alternative means by which to provide heating and hot and cold water services to all flats.

The ESP report (November 2011)

The report recommended essentially the option we have adopted – a centralised system with a Heat Interface Unit serving each flat independently. The options were presented to leaseholders at an Extraordinary General Meeting in October 2013. Slides. This was followed up with a questionnaire, the results of which were:

  • Some 160 leaseholders responded (77%). Of those,
  • 70% wanted the HIU solution and a further 16% wanted to leave it to the experts
  • 14% preferred individual gas boilers
  • 84% said they would accept or probably accept the majority verdict

At about this point the project was suspended because we discovered that the boilers, or rather their gas burners, were in a dreadful state of repair and were not heating the hot water sufficiently to maintain adequate safety levels. It was always recognised that the boiler is what needs to be replaced as part of the project. In the light of this new evidence, however, the boiler works took priority. New gas burners and controls systems were installed. The rooftop cold water tanks were replaced. An upgraded control system was installed.

Having consulted Counsel, it emerged that to facilitate the project all 207 leases needed to be changed. After extensive consultation with leaseholders and lawyers, our application to the First Tier Tribunal was approved in 2020. The revised lease can be found here. The new lease allowed us to (a) apply for planning permission and (b) tender for the work. Price Building Services were selected to install the pipework to the back door of every flat and to make changes to the plant room. This work is due to complete in 2023. Flats will have until 2034 to connect to the new system.

Last Updated on 5 March 2023