Wetherby Building Systems: Blackberry Hill Hospital Modular

  • 22 May 2023

32 high quality ‘flat-pack’ homes form part of Vistry Partnerships’ wider regeneration of a 21-acre site, which includes 346 homes (including 100 much needed affordable homes), feature OSB board and 15mm timber cavity rails from Wetherby Building Systems.

Retail and start-up business units, a community building and extensive green spaces for the whole community to enjoy also feature.

As part of a Homes England initiative, Vistry Partnerships opted to use ilke’s modern methods of construction (MMC) for part of the housing development, due to the significant speed, quality and energy-efficiency benefits that offsite manufacturing delivers.

With Wetherby being ilke’s exclusive EWI partner, much collaboration went into this project at the specification stage to ensure that the production of high-quality, energy efficient homes were achieved.

Manufactured at the company’s 250,000 square foot factory in Knaresborough, the steel frame substrate of the properties was encapsulated in the OSB board and 15mm timber cavity rails.


Building Regulations

In accordance with building regulations, fire breaks and intumescent strips were included above 2nd floor level. To ensure strict u-value targets were adhered to, two thicknesses of insulation were mechanically fixed via the spacer tracks to the external walls of these properties; 110mm ridged high-density EPS on the areas receiving a Wetherby 688 Buff Multi Brick Slip Façade and 130mm enhanced EPS on the areas receiving a dazzling finish of Wetherby 0500N Silicone Thincoat Render.

Following factory completion, each of the 32 homes was carefully dismantled and transported by road to Bristol; where the units were craned into position and re-assembled onsite.

The whole process took roughly four months to complete – approximately half the time it would have taken using traditional construction methods.


Matthew Bench, executive director of partnerships at Ilke Homes, says: “Working with Vistry Partnerships on this project demonstrates the confidence that leading developers have in the quality of our homes and materials we select for them, and the speed at which we can deliver these desperately needed homes to site.

“Offsite manufacturing has a key role to play in reviving the economy and is the perfect solution to building high-quality, energy-efficient homes in a fraction of the time it takes using traditional methods of construction.

Craig Currie, managing director of Vistry Partnerships West, adds: “This project really is about true partnership and regeneration, working with a range of expert partners and using our own expertise to transform these redundant buildings into a fantastic new community.

“Many of the historic buildings around the Blackberry Hill Hospital site, which is a 10-minute drive from Bristol city centre, are Grade-II listed. Therefore, it was vital that we adopted a sympathetic approach to the exterior aesthetics of the new and refurbished properties.

“We’re delighted to have worked with Ilke Homes and Wetherby Building Systems on this scheme.

“We will almost certainly consider partnering with them again since their modern methods of construction allowed us to accelerate our programme, meaning we can speed up the process of bringing much needed affordable homes to local people in the future.”


Wetherby Building Systems,
1 Kid Glove Road,
Golborne Enterprise Park,
Greater Manchester,
United Kingdom

Phone: 01942 717100
Fax: 01942 717101

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