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Winners of 2019 Passive Fire Protection Awards

02 January 2020

The Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP) announced the winners of the 2019 Passive Fire Protection Industry Awards on Thursday, 5 December at an Awards Lunch held in the Pavilion at the Tower of London.

The awards were presented by ITV’s Good Morning Britain presenter Charlotte Hawkins to companies and individuals judged to have contributed to the advancement of the passive fire protection sector.

ASFP Passive Fire Protection Innovation of the Year was awarded to R Lewis & Co Ltd for its Deflection Head Repair Detail. The detail was developed to address a problem in a 29-storey residential block in which the standard deflection head detail within a two hour fire wall was missing. To avoid having to take down and rebuild the wall, R Lewis developed the new detail which could be installed to the face of the wall from one side only, minimising damage and disruption. R Lewis then commissioned a fire resistance test to show that the modification would work; something that is usually the preserve of manufacturers. The detail has since been installed across many projects. The judges commended the product for directly addressing a nationwide industry problem and praised the contractor for designing and testing a novel solution.

Sharpfibre Ltd received the Best Installation Project 2019 for its work on the on the Newfoundland building in the heart of London’s Canary Wharf. The project presented unique challenges in protecting from the elements the fire protection to the structural steels of this 220m tower. Sharpfibre’s solution was to apply a self-sticking, breathable water-resisting membrane – Wraptite. The judges were impressed with the innovative and cost effective solution for this live project which involved work at height in very exposed conditions including applying Wraptite outside the boundary of the building at great height. 

Passive Fire Protection Advocate of the Year was awarded to Neville Tomblin of Southampton City Council for his outstanding professionalism in upgrading fire safety, especially passive protection in the Council’s high rise residential blocks. With his 45 years’ experience in domestic construction, refurbishment and repairs, Neville motivates staff and colleagues and takes a pro-active approach to his duties, working with his team to expand their skills and experience. Neville’s work is helping to deliver a safer environment for residents as well as protecting the value of the Council’s housing stock.

Member of the Year was awarded to Aidan O’Connor, Estate Manager, Fire Safety at Ireland’s Health Service Executive for his active role in raising awareness of passive fire and working to improve installation quality by promoting third party certification of sub-contractors. Aidan insists on excellence in passive fire protection in all hospitals and medical facilities and promotes the ASFP and its members to Government projects in the Republic of Ireland. He is a very active member of the ASFP Technical Task Group in Ireland and regularly attends Council and other ASFP meetings and events. 

The new ASFP Academic Achievement Awards rewarded those who achieved success in the Level 3 and Level 2 Passive Fire Protection qualifications awarded by the Institution of Fire Engineers. The Level 2 Award went to Duncan Brickhill from BM TRADA, while the Level 3 winners were Sem Kneeshaw from Fire Delay Contractors Ltd and James McClavy from Saint-Gobain Isover.

ASFP CEO Niall Rowan said: “The ASFP Passive Fire Protection Awards aim to highlight excellence in passive fire protection and reward those who contribute to the advancement of the sector. I would like to congratulate all those who were shortlisted for these awards and of course applaud the very worthy winners. Every entry was of a very high standard and the variety of entries served to demonstrate the excellent work, expertise, professionalism and commitment of our members. 

“2019 has been a hugely successful year for the ASFP, in which we have seen significant growth in membership and very strong interest in our Level 3 and Level 2 training programmes. Close to 300 people have now completed the courses, with most of these going on to sit the associated Institution of Fire Engineers examinations. We are delighted to recognise this success through our new Academic Achievement Awards.”  

Runners up in the awards were Sherwin Williams for its FIRETEX FX6002 intumescent coating; Coopers Fire for its fire curtain installation project at One Creechurch Place, London; CLC Contractors for its work upgrading fire precautions in high rise flats Southampton City Council; and R Lewis & Co Ltd for its work on the University of West England, Frenchay Campus.