Kemtile, a division of Stonhard, has recently completed the installation of a new hard-wearing and chemically resistant flooring solution for Wessex Water at their Food Hall Facility.  

The regional water and sewerage business – which serves 2.9 million customers across the south-west of England – had recruited Kemtile to provide a suitable flooring solution for their “food to power” facility in Avonmouth.

Corrosive elements contained in the domestic waste treated on-site by Wessex had attacked the concrete floor surface to leave it “pitted” and uneven. A subsequent “overlayment” installed to combat the problem had also failed within a short period of time leaving the floor needing a complete rethink in terms of a solution.   

Kemtile visited the site over 18 months and undertook testing works of the existing finishes and structural slab by taking “cores” and having these examined by a concrete testing laboratory. Assisteds by Sean McIntyre, Stonhard Coatings and Lining Manager, Kemtile developed a specification that included the removal of all the existing finishes back down to the structural slab and the installation of a new fit-for-purpose floor. This included – a new concrete overlay to “falls”, new surface drainage and a chemically resistant, hard-wearing floor finish capable of withstanding the movement and “scaping” from a 25-tonne mechanical loader.  

Kemtile installed Stonhard’s Stonclad UT – a high-impact polyurethane-based floor screed which exhibits excellent abrasion, thermal shock, thermal cycling and chemical-resistant characteristics. Stonclad UT was installed at 12mm thick, it incorporated a “unique” wear-indicating layer that shows if maintenance is required given the extremes of use in this facility. The system was further reinforced with a layer of Stonhard’s Stonchem 601 chemical-resistant lining system to further enhance its chemical-resistant properties. 

A proactive approach to health and safety was maintained throughout the installation with the installation teams complying with the site CDM regs which included the mandatory use of gas monitors at all times. 

Dan Owen, Project Engineer of GENco/Wessex Water Enterprises, said: “Kemtile brought great expertise to the table from day one dealing with a significant level of deterioration and providing immediate support –  as well as supplying the final flooring fix over the 18 months that we worked together. I commend them on seamless delivery with minimum disruption to the rest of the plant which remained in operation throughout.”

Kemtile’s David Priest commented: “This was a significant project for us – in a sector with huge potential – involving a number of external stakeholders for sign-off including the original structural engineers.

“We drew on expertise from across the Stonhard group globally working with colleagues based in Canada and Portugal who had completed similar projects and had an excellent understanding of the requirements of the industry.”