Mapei systems safeguard future at Northcroft Lido ..

A comprehensive Mapei system – including structural repair and waterproofing products – has been used to renovate the historic Lido at Northcroft Leisure Centre in Newbury.  Investigation works and preparation of the concrete repair specification were carried out by KRP Consulting Engineers for West Berkshire Council; the new facility features a 50-metre Olympic length heated outdoor pool, interactive splash pool and additional changing cubicles with accessible features.  Mapei products were supplied by Resapol, with works carried out by Structural Renovations on behalf of Main Contractor, Universal Civils & Build.  

The original outdoor pool at Northcroft dates back to the late 19th century and is included on the First Edition Ordnance Survey mapping of 1880-1881. Enlarged in 1914 and completely rebuilt and converted to a Lido in 1937, the pool was purportedly “the largest in the south of England”. Further works in 1967 transformed it into a Lido complex with adjacent ‘baby pool’. Mapei was approached in late 2020 by Structural Renovations to put together an outline  proposal to repair the Lido.  This was developed and detailed discussions were held with KRP Consulting Engineers, with assistance from Olton Structural Consulting, before finalising the proposal.

Following extensive consultations with local residents, works commenced last May to save the lido and improve the facility for future generations. The high performance Mapei specification included products to repair and stabilise the concrete foundation of the lido and to create a new waterproof and watertight surface.  The specification comprised: Lamposilex fast set pre-blended mortar, Mapeproof Swell moisture expanding rubber-based hydrophilic sealant, Mapemortar HB R3 repair mortar and Mapeband TPE flexible sealing and waterproofing tape.  During the second stage of works, Mapefix VE SF ultra-rapid hardening structural anchor was applied, along with Adesilex PG1 & Adesilex PG4 thixotropic epoxy adhesives and Epojet LV epoxy resin.  The surface build-up was then completed with Topcem fast drying hydraulic binder for screed and Mapelastic Foundation flexible cementitious waterproofing mortar, and Mapeflex PU 45 FT – a rapid-hardening paintable polyurethane sealant.

The £5.7 million investment project, funded by West Berkshire Council, is projected to increase visitor numbers from 15-20,000 per annum to over 50,000 over the increased outdoor swim season.  Now operated by Everyone Active, the lido season will now run from Easter to September, and will offer a wider range of water-based activities.

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