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A new-build Devon doctors’ surgery extension has been completed with a distinctive Sarnafil Copper Patina roof, achieving the traditional copper-look roof the architect envisaged for a fraction of the cost and labour.

Constructed on the site of the existing surgery, Honiton Surgery’s new home is a bold, bright design with its semi-octagonal shape complemented by crisp white wall cladding and the fresh green of the G410-18ELF Copper Patina single ply roof.

Architect Andrew Saunders from Ford, Gilpin & Riley in Exeter says that the roof was central to the overall design. “The original surgery is an early-80s, utilitarian building,” he reveals. “We wanted the new structure to contrast sharply and reflect the building’s use with a clean, clinical appearance in keeping with modern medicine. That’s why we bravely went with the green copper roof.”

Andrew considered several roofing options, including a traditional copper roof. “We originally might have gone with a metal roof,” he continues. “But, having used metal on a previous project, we found the installation very labour intensive indeed and so went for the Sarnafil instead. The Copper Patina product allowed us to achieve a traditional copper appearance without the complications this might otherwise involve.”

ABC Roofing Services, a Sarnafil registered contractor based in Exeter, was commissioned by main contractor Setter & Saunders to install the 600sq m roof. ABC’s John Flavin says that the roof’s complicated geometrics posed some practical challenges. “The roof’s severe slopes were our main challenge,” he says. “We had to use purpose-built ladders to access the roof and stop us sliding away as some of the slopes were at 30-degrees and 15-metres long.”

The roof’s centrepiece is a raised octagonal roof window, beneath which is an internal lightwell with lantern light that illuminates the heart of the surgery and waiting room. John says that the Sarnafil particularly lent itself to these areas. “The flexibility of the Sarnafil system was a real benefit in achieving all the detailing and decor profiling, especially on the roof’s ‘top hat’,” he adds.

Both Andrew and John agree that the project was a resounding success. “The Sarnafil system proved to be a suitable material for a complicated roof form with intricate details,” Andrew concludes. “I think the roof and building as a whole look really good and the bold design has definitely grown on people.”

With John living just five minutes away from the project, it is one he takes particular pride in. “This was an interesting project and one I get to see on a regular basis as it’s so close to home,” he says. “It looks lovely, although I can’t help but think of the havoc walking on those slopes plays with your calf muscles when I pass it! I inspect it once a week in person – you can’t ask much more than that from a contractor!”


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Arundel Jones Associates Ltd Registered in England and Wales No. 07334149
Hill Farm, Linton Hill, Maidstone, Kent ME 17 4AL
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Metal roofing systems
Steel roofing