Westfield Farm

Risden lane

Sandhurst

Kent. UK

TN18 5DU

 

 

 

+44 (0)1580 755532

mail@pcsconsult.co.uk

Consulting Services Ltd

Engineering Services Consultants

PCS

PCS Consulting Services Ltd is an established small consultancy specialising in the technical assessment, design and contract management of Electrical and Mechanical building services and infrastructure.

We are also able to offer a full range of technical advice and assistance in relation to Energy Efficiency, CO2 reduction and sensible application of sustainable and renewable technologies including Biomass, Heat Pumps and Solar Energy.

 

NEWS

October 2018

Summer works at Goldsmiths University of London, Loring Halls of Residence have now completed. Heating Main infrastructure to Block G, new flat heat interfaces and cylinders and new boiler plant (seen here) were all installed during a short intensive contract.

In other news we have learnt that another project for which we designed M&E services, is in the Kent Design and Development Awards. The new veterans accommodation for Royal British Legion Industries, working with Clague Architects (see May 2017 below). So that will be three projects in the awards.

 

September 2018

 

 

We are delighted to have learned that two major recent projects have been been short-listed for the Kent Design and Development Awards 2018. Cranbrook School 6th Form Centre (Nov 2017 below) and Gravesham Borough Market (Nov 2016 below) have both been selected. The awards are due to be announced on 8th November. So watch this space!.

Working with Clay Architecture on both of these projects, the schemes shared a common need for innovative thinking and detailed design within very different existing buildings.

 

 

August 2018

We are delighted to see The Cottage Hospice (for Hospice in the Weald) getting out of the ground now. Photo here was taken on the day the steels turned up. This facility will provide twelve new in-patient bedrooms and associated daycare and community use spaces. Designed to be highly sustainable, we will post updates in the coming months as the project moves through to completion.  

 

July 2018

More regulation news this month!
On 1
st July the new BS7671:2018 Requirements for Electrical Installations (IET Wiring Regulations 18th Edition) was published.
This is a major update and comes into force on 1
st January 2019. It applies to all UK electrical installations. Contact us if you would like more information about the changes and implications on how they will affect electrical designs on projects

 

June 2018

We are getting enquiries about The Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES). These form part of The Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property)(England and Wales) Regulations 2015. From 1st April 2018, landlords of buildings (within the scope of the MEES Regulations) must not renew existing tenancies or grant new tenancies if the building has less than the minimum energy performance certificate (EPC) rating of E. Things are set to tighten up further.  After 1 April 2023, landlords must not continue to let any buildings which have an EPC rating of less than E.
Exemptions are possible in some special cases.

This is part of the UK Governments efforts to reduce CO2 emissions from existing buildings. Engineering systems and fabric performance play a key role in EPC ratings and remedial works and upgrades may be need to be planned well in advance and need to be carefully considered.

 

May 2018

Work has started at The Packhouse, Wares Farm, Linton. A significant development for Berry Gardens fruit producers. PCS are working with Civils Contracting Ltd in the design and installation management of fixed building services and the significant infrastructure required for this exciting large project.

 

April 2018

Phase 1 of the heating replacement at St Nicholas Church, Southfleet is complete. This work involved replacement boilers and central plant, ready for Phase 2 which will see the installation of new heating within the church later this year. Also this month we are also very pleased to commence design work for more work for The University of Kent at Chatham Dockyard within the Sail and Colour Loft.

 

March 2018

We have been delighted to see the completion of the Heating Infrastructure works at Maplesden Noakes Secondary School in Maidstone. This project has been running since last June and has seen a large district main installed, a number of satellite plant rooms and a new central boiler house, seen in the photo here - formed from an old oil store. This was a great project with all team members working hard to achieve a brilliant end result with amazingly little disruption to the school.

 

February 2018

A number of recent enquiries have been about electrical supply quality issues.

See here is evidence of a transient on a voltage waveform measured on a client’s site using our power analyser. Thought to be imported from the local grid, a similar event was responsible for damage to electronic systems and loss of business. There are increasing concerns about spikes, dips and other transients. The answer is sometimes a Surge Protection Device strategy other sites need more complex remedial strategies. Speak to us if you would like more information about power quality issues.

 

January 2018

Just before the break, we were delighted to carry out final inspections on the successfully completed Tong Centre at Simon Langton Grammar School, Canterbury. This project, saw the construction of a open plan space, for 6th Form use in Creative Research. Provided with a heat recovery heating and cooling, with natural ventilation and external solar shading measures, this is a great innovative space.

A good looking building too!

 

December 2017

Our office is now connected to the farm’s biomass heating system. Which means we are now “Carbon Neutral” in office energy usage - as our electricity comes from 100% renewable generation. Seen here is part of our local fuel source - newly coppiced chestnut, winter cut, stacked ready to dry for at least 18 months. Biomass still remains one of the best low carbon heating sources - when matched to the right applications.
Seasons Greetings and Best Wishes for 2018 to all our clients and colleagues.

 

November 2017

Cranbrook School 6th Form Centre is now complete. This ambitious project saw the transformation of an old 1960’s  gymnasium into a “state of the art” 6th Form Centre. Thermal upgrades together with underfloor heating, passive ventilation, daylighting and highly efficient LED lighting makes this a comfortable and efficient space for the 6th Form to work in. Working again with Clay Architecture Ltd  this project showcases what can be done to maximise the function and use of older accommodation.

 

October 2017

With winter approaching attention is turning to the provision of heating to buildings once again. We have several ecclesiastical projects at the moment, with churches wishing to improve comfort conditions for worship , events and general use. Historic buildings of all types need care and consideration when providing new heating - aesthetics, fabric conservation, efficiency and efficacy all contribute to necessary decisions. Contact us for more information.
 

September 2017

Electric Vehicles and Hybrids seem likely to become more and more common. Some of our clients are already planning for this with the installation of EV Charging Points and associated infrastructure. Seen here is a completed installation for Oxleas NHS trust (with a PCS vehicle “testing it out”!). One of several sites being future proofed. Electrical capacity is a key factor with charge points and careful load management will be needed in years to come as vehicles become  dependant on electricity.

 

August 2017

Another summer holiday… time for mains distribution replacements! Works proceed with several buildings at Goldsmiths University, with existing electrical distribution equipment being replaced with modern switchgear and monitoring systems. Seen here is one of the new panels on this site - with diversions and changeovers nearing completion. Contact us if you have any concerns about switchgear or electrical power safety or quality.

 

July 2017

Environment and Sustainability seem to be out of the headlines at the moment; we should nevertheless remain committed to reduction of CO2 emissions in the built environment as well as considering supply chain and resources. We were delighted this month to revisit a project of ours completed last year - a 200kW Biomass boiler fuelled on local woodchip serving a range of buildings including a pool complex and manor house. Please contact us if you would like more information on sustainable design and renewables.

 

June 2017

As summer approaches, overheating and the need for cooling in buildings comes to mind. Kent College, Pembury has just been provided with a natural ventilation scheme in their older sports hall. Maximising the ability to purge the space at night time and the free cooling that passive ventilation affords, this means that the hall can be used for exams and other uses with fresh air assured and with far less chance of overheating.

 

May 2017

Veterans Accommodation at Aylesford for RBLI completes this month. Seen here is one of the show apartments. Twenty Four of these units have been built to a very high standard. (See our Feb 2016 entry below). More information on the development and the essential work the RBLI carry out is available here.

 

April 2017

After waiting weeks for phone lines we are delighted to confirm that our office is now finally based at Westfield Farm; so don’t forget to note our new address and contact details!
Other news this month. Civil and Electrical works are well under way at Brambletye School, seen here is the “formwork” for a new concrete substation and switchpanel bases. Also, refurbishment of Highpoint House, Shooters Hill for Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust is also now complete. Finally and excitingly, work also starts on site at Cranbrook School in conversion of the old gymnasium to a new 6th Form Centre.

 

March 2017

The final section of Gravesham Borough Market refurbishment has now been completed. Seen here is the “Old Fish Market” which fronts onto Queens St in Gravesend. It has bespoke ventilation and odour control provided for street food stalls as well as seating areas and facilities. The Fish Market will be opening to public soon - the rest of the building is already open again.
Take time to call by and look at this wonderfully restored historic building right near the Thames.

 

February 2017

About to commence is an interesting project for the Port of London Authority. Northfleet Radar Station is planned to be erected on the South Side of the Thames to aid navigation and access to river. The tower shown here is accompanied by ground equipment and facilities. Such installations require careful design and infrastructure.

In other news, construction is about to start on the Tong Centre for Simon Langton School in Canterbury. This is a custom built 6th form study centre and will be completed later this year.

 

 

 

 

January 2017

Construction is underway on a new teaching block for Harris Academy, Merton. This is another low energy building where it is proposed to utilise passive ventilation to ensure comfortable learning conditions for students with low running costs. Reduction of CO2 levels in school classrooms is an essential part of design as high levels have been shown to increase risk of drowsiness and poor concentration. Contact us if you would like more information on occupancy comfort in educational (and other) buildings.
 

December 2016

The Kent Design and Development awards were held on the 15th of this month. Brompton-Westbrook Primary school made it to the finals and although did not win it’s category, we are delighted to have been involved in this carefully designed and sustainable extension and partial refurbishment. Seen here is the new hall, complete with passive ventilation which is helping this great school maintain comfortable conditions throughout the year.

On this cheerful note, we wish all our friends and colleagues a very Happy Christmas and Best Wishes for 2017.
 

November 2016

Gravesham Borough Market nears completion this month. Opening ready for Christmas.

Seen here is Queen Victoria admiring the refurbished main market hall. Historic building conservation has featured heavily in this scheme, alongside energy efficient lighting, radiant background heating, controllable natural ventilation and excellent new stall facilities for market traders. More can be seen at the following link

https://vimeo.com/187464291

Try and visit this building in much ignored riverside historic Gravesend.

 

October 2016

We are delighted to see the Living Well Centre at Rowans Hospice nearing completion. Provided with many sustainable features including heat pump heating and PV with very low CO2 emissions, this building also looks smashing.

More information on Rowans Hospice and the crucial care their provide can be found here.

 

September 2016

Lecturing and training are forming an increasing part of our workload recently. Several short courses planned this month - mostly on behalf on CIBSE Training, including trips to both Belfast and York with “in house” electrical services lectures.

Contact us if you would like further information on either informal “in house” training on Energy and Building Services or for more information on selected formal CPD accredited day training courses via CIBSE.

 

August 2016

This month sees the completion of a complex mains electrical distribution project for Goldsmiths University, London. Also keeping us busy are several early stage feasibility reports on sustainability and energy strategies. When dealing with building energy performance the earlier in the process this is considered the better. Contact us if you would like more information on this.

 

 

 

 

 

 

July 2016

So now the summer is here many schemes have started on site - a busy summer ahead. An interesting project, also about to start is a private dwelling  nestled on the South Downs in West Sussex.  High sustainability is the brief and this is to be a another Passivhaus project with need for some very innovative design. Contact us if you would like more details of sustainable, low energy buildings and bespoke engineering services design.

 

June 2016

We have recently invested in a thermal imaging camera. It has already proved invaluable in identifying thermal bridging, inefficiencies in heating and ventilation systems as well as overheating cables.
Seen here is an example of heat loss and cold bridging in action through a domestic chimney.
 

May 2016

Two of our projects  just won a RIBA South East Regional Award. An exciting in-fill beach front dwelling in Hove was challenging due to space and service area limitations. Working with Sanei Hopkins Architects Ltd
Also, Cinque Ports Street; a 16 apartment block in Rye, East Sussex. Marvellous new accommodation in an ancient town. Working with Jonathan Dunn Architects .
We are delighted to have worked with both these teams and also delighted to have been named on RIBA awards again.

April 2016

Spring is here and summer projects are once again in planning stages. In meantime, Fulston Manor School, Sittingbourne Phase 2  nears completion. This is part of an ongoing masterplan which has so far seen a new classroom block, the new 6th Form Centre seen here and a significant electrical distribution upgrade.

 

March 2016

Recent successful boiler replacement projects at Chatham Historic Dockyard have received lots of coverage this month with mention in several trade journals . Including in print MBS, HVR and the CIBSE Journal as well as online at with The Building Services & Environmental Engineer

Contact us if you want any more information about the energy efficient specification of boilers and systems in historic buildings.

 

February 2016

This month, construction starts on the LIBOR project for the Royal British Legion Industries at Aylesford in Kent. This project will see construction of two blocks of twelve flats for service personnel in need of assistance. Seen here is a 3D Revit model of one of the blocks. More information on this project can be found here.
 

January 2016

We spotted one of our projects on Channel 4 TV over the festive season. “Amazing Spaces” featured two high end beach houses right on the sea front at Camber Sands. In Season 5 Episode 6, George Clarke gave an architectural tour of these lovely new dwellings. What was not mentioned was excellent thermal performance as well as Ground Source Heat Pumps and Whole House Vent systems making these a pair of very low energy buildings as well as attractive buildings.

 

December 2015

The Richard Holmes Building Cinema project at Goldsmiths, University of London is now complete. This project saw the provision of a new small digital public cinema to be operated by Curzon Cinemas, within the university complex at New Cross, also offering superb state of the art facilities for students. This was a complex project, with environmental conditions being paramount. Teamwork and a positive project team also enabled this scheme to be completed within a very tight programme. The results were excellent

 

As the festive season approaches we would also like to wish all our colleagues in the industry a Happy Christmas and a Peaceful New Year.

 

November 2015

Our director has written a CPD training article on Power Quality and Monitoring for the CIBSE Journal which can be accessed here  - http://www.cibsejournal.com/cpd/modules/2015-11/

Should you wish to discuss this topic then please contact us.


Two major projects handed over in the last few weeks.

University of Kent, Sail and Colour Loft at Chatham Historic Dockyard. A complex refurbishment in an important historic building.
Also, the new music facilities for Junior Kings School, Canterbury (pictured above) have just been occupied. Excellent energy efficiency, extensive infrastructure works, renewables , complex acoustic considerations and performance lighting - a great project to be part of.
 


October 2015


The new sports hall is completed at Kent College Pembury and opens on 2nd October. This is a great looking project and incorporates passive ventilation, an extensive PV array as well as significant on site infrastructure works.

Lighting is designed to Sport England Standards and provides versatile and uniform lighting.  We have been delighted to be part of a great team; Kent College, HMY Architects and Wicksteads (QS). And surely one of the best looking sports halls we have seen recently.

 

 

September 2015

It’s been a busy summer, loads of boiler room refurbishments and essential infrastructure upgrades - particularly in the educational sector.

Left is an example of a major electrical upgrade for a private school client of ours. Cabling and ductwork seen all had to be backfilled by the return to school. The green building on left is a new substation.

This is type of project is common as school expand to accommodate increasing student numbers.

 

August 2015 Our 20th Anniversary !

In August 1995 we started trading, in those days called Priory Contract Services (which is where the name comes from)

Since then we have been offering technical service to an ever increasing client base. We are close approaching our Two Thousandth project.

This month see the successful completion of extensions to Vattenfall’s Thanet Wind Farm shore based facilities at Ramsgate. Possibly one of the most sustainable buildings we have designed. Heat Pump heating, Solar PV, Solar Thermal, Passive Ventilation, Rainwater Harvesting as just some of the features.

 

 

 

July 2015

Some nice projects on the drawing board this summer as well as plenty on site.

This month sees the new sports hall at Kent College (Pembury) nearing completion.

Seen below is a view of the PV array and one of the Passive Ventilation turrets. Watch out for more pictures of the complex next month.

June 2015

In addition to lots of summer holiday work, we also have some new regulations to comply with.  


Did You Know?

On the 30th of this month Amendment No3 of BS7671:2008 (IET Wiring Regulations) comes into force. This amendment has some important changes - including banning specification of flammable consumer units in dwellings. If you have any questions on how this or other updates in the regulations might impact on projects then of course contact us.

 

May 2015

A 40kW PV array installed for Oxleas NHS Trust Bracton Centre is now complete,  just as another major PV project is out to tender for Medway Council’s Gun Wharf offices in Chatham. Larger PV arrays are still proving a sound investment and secure means to reduce CO2 emissions. (Picture below shows the work in progress at Bracton Centre)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

April 2015

Hopes of warmer weather means we are now designing and planning a number of boiler replacements once the heating is off.

Speak to us if you have concerns about condition of plant or equipment, age of systems or capacity limitations.

Also this month at Junior Kings School Canterbury a new music block with a range of renewables is now well under way as well as a major site electrical infrastructure upgrade planned for completion this Summer.

 

March 2015

Time out of the office early in the month for all our staff to visit Ecobuild 2015. This exciting event demonstrates that sustainability and efficiency is increasingly important.

The Rt Hon Ed Davey, Environment Secretary and other politicians gave insight into policy and sustainability on a national and European scale.

 

Contact us if you would like assistance on sustainability and energy reductions on a more local scale within the built environment.

 

 

February 2015

A new build project for Kent College (Pembury) is currently well underway. A four court new sports hall with teaching accommodation and extensive renewables, this is proving to be a great project .

We are also delighted to hear that Gravesham Council has been granted lottery funding for the refurbishment of the listed covered market building, as we move into detailed design for this historic building.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

January 2015

A Major Anniversary Year and a New Member of Staff!

This year marks PCS’s 20th birthday. Our first commission was received in August 1995 and at the turn of 2015 we had completed over One Thousand Seven Hundred projects both large and small! Look out for more news of our anniversary later in the year.

 

We are also delighted to welcome our new Junior Engineer Ryan Lee to the company.  

 

And some other news this month, is that St Mary’s Church, Kenardington is now complete. Try to visit this wonderful small church following its refurbishment and extensions if you can.

 

 

 

 

December 2014

Westgate Hall, Canterbury.

Opened its doors to the community again last month, with an official opening by the Lord Mayor of Canterbury and the High Sheriff of Kent. It was a great evening, following complete refurbishment.

New lighting, heating and natural ventilation are key components in the updated accommodation. For more information see the Westgate Community Trust website.

 

November 2014

Medway Crematorium
Kent Design and Development Awards

Making news again, this project was voted category winner at the presentation evening on 6th November.

Working with Clay Architects, this was complex project for the whole team. A highly serviced building with sensitive acoustic and aesthetic requirements as well need to manage energy usage. More details can be seen on Clay Architecture’s website here.

 

October 2014

Building Information Modelling (BIM)

Following some major investment and training, we have now implemented Revit MEP in our office and we will be migrating to this for drawing and design delivery as BIM is adopt on projects.

Contact us if you would like more information on the amazing and exciting capabilities and options this system of collaborative working provides.

 

September 2014

Rectory Park, Horsmonden. This month sees the start of this exciting refurbishment project in Kent. Biomass boilers (fired on locally grown fuel) and a district heat main will be used to serve the refurbished part mediaeval manor house and swimming pool complex.

Contact us if you wish to know more about the provision of biomass on small or larger sites, or if you need advice on what other renewable energy options are available.

 

August 2014

Holy Trinity Church Wandsworth is now complete, following a complete refurbishment including new M&E services throughout, the new administration link and facilities have now been finished.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

July 2014

These hot summer days are a reminder to include consideration of solar overheating and sunpath analysis in any new project.
This can be useful in identifying extent and risks of overheating in new and existing buildings, and coming up with solutions for natural cooling.

 

June 2014

Standby generators and resilient power supplies are featuring in our workload at the moment. We have a number of healthcare, private and public services projects where reliability and 100% security of supply are forming a key briefing item.

 

May 2014

Medway Crematorium won an award in the RIBA South East 2014 awards. We are delighted and very proud to have been part of this innovative project.

More details can be seen on Clay Architecture’s website here.

 

April 2014

The Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive… has finally arrived and compliant renewable heating systems are able to attract some not insignificant payments. Feel free to speak to us if you would like to discuss implementation of suitable technologies on a project.

 

RICS South East Awards

Having already been shortlisted for RIBA awards Medway Crematorium is now also being considered for the RICS SouthEast 2014 awards

 

March 2014

RIBA SouthEast Awards

We have been delighted to learn that one of our projects, Medway Crematorium has been shortlisted in the 2014 RIBA Southeast Awards.

More details can be seen on the Clay Architecture  website www.clayarchitecture.com.

 

January 2014

Biomass boilers and heat pump schemes are featuring on many of our projects at the moment. There are (hopefully!) new government incentives for small renewable heat systems coming in the Spring, so this trend seems likely to continue.

 

December 2013

Happy Christmas to all our clients and colleagues

 

November 2013

More and more clients are seeking EARLY STAGE advice from us in relation to energy efficient design, CO2 reductions and Energy Performance.

 

October 2013

TAS Dynamic Simulation Modelling rollout is complete with “in house” DSM being offered on all projects as an in house option.