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Installation of Waterproofing System to Basement Vaults of British Museum, London
by Newton Waterproofing Systems
The project was located in the East Residence of the British Museum, London.  The area was previously used to store artifacts which were becoming wet and damaged as the system previously applied had failed resulting in water ingress penetrating through the substrate. The British Museum decided to change the use of the vaults to changing and storage space for staff.
The waterproofing specification was designed to provide a dry interior to Grade 3 of BS8102, the British Standard Code of Practice for Protection of Structures Against Water from the Ground.  Care was taken to choose a scheme which involved minimal disruption and a sympathetic approach for this listed building.  Newton designed the waterproofing system, supplied the required products including membranes and supervised the work.
Newton 500 was applied to the floors, Newton 500 Lath was applied to walls and vaulted ceilings and the Newton range of fixing plugs, tapes, ropes were used.  The large number of vaulted ceilings made it extremely difficult to fix as Newton 500 Lath had to be fixed at a minimum of  250mm centres to get a firm enough fix to accept a plaster finish.

Channels 150mm x 150mm were cut into the floor slab at the wall/floor junction and laid to fall into a sump chamber with pump system.  A screed was laid on the floor and British Gypsum Hardwall plaster applied to the Newton 500 Lath in three coats.
The waterproofing contract was to an area of approximately 1100m and the contract value 2.5m.  

It took seven weeks to install the membrane and four weeks to plaster.

Eighteen vaults in the East Residence of the British Museum now being used as locker and rest rooms for male and female security staff.
This case study has been submitted by a member and the British Structural Waterproofing Association accepts no responsibility for its content. 

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