Steel Anchors Save a 16th Century Castle

A diamond drill helped to insert the steel anchors into the building.A diamond drill helped to insert the steel anchors into the building.

Astley Castle in Warwickshire, England, recently was awarded the Riba Stirling Prize for Architecture after an intensive renovation.

Astley Castle in Warwickshire, England, recently was awarded the Riba Stirling Prize for Architecture after an intensive renovation.

Astley Castle in Warwickshire, England, recently was awarded the Riba Stirling Prize for Architecture after an intensive renovation. The prize is the United Kingdom’s most prestigious architectural award and is judged upon original, imaginative and well-executed designs that meet the needs of their users and inspire those who use and visit them.

CINTEC International, which has an office in Baltimore, specializes in structural masonry retrofit strengthening, repair and preservation. The firm teamed with architects and engineers from Mann Williams, Bath, England, and Protectahome, Newport, England, to restore the castle. CINTEC assisted with the first phase of restoration, which included structural repairs and stabilization of the remaining walls prior to rebuilding. CINTEC’s patented steel anchors were used to stitch together and strengthen the walls.

A diamond drill helped to insert the steel anchors into the building. Once in place, grout was pumped into a special sleeve surrounding the anchor, and air was pumped out. Cores removed during this process were retained and reused where the anchors were installed, leaving an almost invisible repair. The work has ensured the survival of the original walls. Today, the ancient castle stands as a luxury holiday home, which can be rented for up to £2,500 per week (approximately $3,842).

A diamond drill helped to insert the steel anchors into the building.

A diamond drill helped to insert the steel anchors into the building.

“The restoration work on Astley Castle was an impressive enterprise. Anyone who saw the castle prior to its transformation could have been forgiven for thinking it a hopeless ruin,” says Peter James, managing director, CINTEC International. “To be awarded the Riba Stirling Prize demonstrates the true extent of its transformation. It has now been turned into a structurally stable building that will stand the test of time and can be enjoyed by many people in its reincarnation as a holiday home.”

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