Petworth House instructed Coopers to install a Fire Curtain to protect the 13th-century chapel. The fire curtain barrier needed to provide compartmentation to the rest of the historic Petworth House which contains many priceless pieces of artwork
what was the client looking for?
Petworth House in Petworth, West Sussex, England, is a late 17th-century mansion, set within beautiful 283 hectares of deer park land that was landscaped by ‘Capability’ Brown. The house contains the finest and most prized collection of the National Trust’s artwork by artists such as Turner, Van Dyck, Reynolds and Blake.
The site was previously occupied by a fortified manor house founded by Henry de Percy, the 13th-century chapel and undercroft both of which still survive.
The chapel is connected to the main house by a long corridor with a staircase to a viewing gallery. There was previously a fire shutter installed at the entrance to the viewing gallery that did not sufficiently act as a compartmentation barrier to prevent the spread of fire into the chapel and the nearby historic showroom. containing many priceless paintings and sculptures.
HOW DID WE HELP?
Coopers were commissioned to manufacture and install an active fire curtain barrier to replace the existing fire roller shutter that, in the event of fire, would deploy and prevent the spread of fire from the connecting corridor into the chapel viewing gallery, the chapel and the historic showroom.
Coopers installed their FireMaster® at the entrance to the viewing gallery on the first floor that was specifically designed to compartmentalise the spread of fire from the northern end of the house into the Chapel.
FireMaster® is designed to prevent the spread of fire which is activated by a fire or heat detector, thus providing an effective method of compartmentalising built environments. Active fire curtain barriers are often installed, protecting openings, particularly where fire doors cannot be made in the size required in this instance.
Coopers have experience in working in other historic buildings in particular with English Heritage sites such as Royal households and similar buildings and are therefore sympathetic to the restraints as well as the importance that an old listed building presents.
The completed FireMaster® was installed with recessed guides and the headbox hidden above the ceiling line. Until deployed, it is very inconspicuous.