The Royal Albert Hall
One of the United Kingdom’s most treasured and distinctive buildings, The Royal Albert Hall is held in trust for the nation and managed by a registered charity. 
The project consisted of the removal of asbestos insulation residue to walls, floor, ceiling, beams and within the floor trench of the basement level boiler room using wet shot blasting. The works were being carried out to facilitate an ongoing large refurbishment that the venue is undertaking to improve its heating and cooling systems.  
Technical challenges
The majority of services were removed prior to asbestos works starting.
As the client’s consultant advised, anything attached to the walls was to be removed under licensed conditions. This included electrical cabling, which required an asbestos trained electrician to enter the enclosure, confirm isolations and then remove the services.  

The enclosure was set up around the main thoroughfare from the building into the loading bay, which is regularly used by all Royal Albert Hall staff.   Taking this into account, we instructed a licensed scaffolder to build a platform to house the negative pressure units (NPU) inside the boiler in such a way that would minimise the effect on passing pedestrians and wouldn’t hinder the scope of works.  

The project started on the same week that Cirque du Soleil was setting up, so the loading bay contained various pieces of their equipment. We timed our transiting and waste runs around the activity of the production team to ensure their operations weren’t hindered.  Additional control measures were put in place to reduce the noise pollution caused by the plant for the works to ensure that, during showtimes, the works could not be heard by the general public. 

Prior to any works commencing, our site manager agreed on a detailed programme and sequencing of works.

The purpose of this was to confirm a path for progression, agreeable to all trades working on the project, with the master programme being completely transparent and visible to all interested parties and the client. 

The supervisor carried out daily task briefings at the start of every shift, detailing the working areas, tasks, and risks associated with the works. This included all operational personnel and additional trades/subcontractors, allowing all interested parties to appraise the works ahead, raise any issues and concerns, or suggest any improvement opportunities. 

This project consisted of the removal of asbestos insulation residue to walls, floor, ceiling, beams and within the floor trench of the basement level boiler room using wet shot blasting.  
We mobilised a dedicated operational delivery team that remained unchanged throughout the project, consisting of four operatives managed by a competent supervisor.  
Delivery team

We kept the team to manageable numbers to ensure that exemplary levels of health and safety could be maintained at all times.  This experienced team allowed us to deliver the project one week ahead of the scheduled end date and to budget.  

Historic venue

Since its opening by Queen Victoria in 1871, the world’s leading artists from many performance genres have appeared on its stage. Situated on the northern edge of South Kensington, London, the concert hall can seat 5,272 people.  

 It is the venue for the Proms concerts, which have been held there every summer since 1941 and hosts more than 390 shows in the main auditorium annually, including classical, rock and pop concerts, ballet, opera, film screenings with live orchestral accompaniment, sports, awards ceremonies, school and community events, and charity performances and banquets. A further 400 events are held each year in the non-auditorium spaces.  

Summary of service 
Asbestos removal