Portsmouth Historic Dockyard – Boathouse 4


Project Overview

Background & Scope of Works

The site is within the HM Royal Naval Base, in Portsmouth Hampshire.

The project comprised of Extension to roof of the Annexe to provide a fire escape to Boathouse no.4 and associated works including forming of new openings, removal of existing opening, construction of new partitions and mechanical and electrical alterations. Removal of existing corrugated asbestos roof and re-roofing to Annexe. Render repairs to west elevation of the Annexe.

Boathouse no.4 is a rare example mid-twentieth century construction within the Portsmouth historic dockyard, having been built in 1939 as part of the rearmament programme in the lead up to the Second World War.

It stands as one of the largest structures within the dockyard, positioned prominently adjacent to the Victory Gate and forming part of the main promenade through the base. Today, the boathouse is used as a college for traditional boat building and a museum and exhibition space. On the first floor the popular Boathouse no.4 restaurant provides a dining space with views over Portsmouth Harbour.

The works included:
• Removing and safely disposing of the existing asbestos corrugated sheet roof
covering to the Annexe.
• Demolitions including the removal of a large metal framed window on boathouse no.4 and the removal of concrete walls and floors to form openings and a new stairwell.
• Extending the existing roof structure to meet the first floor of Boathouse no.4 and reroofing the Annexe in a corrugated fibre cement roof covering alongside
associated drainage alterations.
• Construction of new partitions within Boathouse no.4 and the Annexe to form the stairwell and refuge points.
• Installation of a new fire escape staircase.
• Render repairs to the west elevation of The Annexe
• Mechanical and electrical alterations including repositioning of the existing boiler flues and installation of emergency lighting and comms within the new stair enclosure.

The project work activities included amongst others:

  • Addition of communications/security/control systems
  • Application of surface finishes, including cement render
  • Cement render removal/repairs
  • External decoration
  • General carpentry joinery and builders work
  • Internal decoration of windows and doors
  • Installation of new rainwater goods
  • M&E works
  • Removal of windows
  • Removal of asbestos containing materials
  • Roofing works
  • Structural alterations
  • Temporary works – Fencing/hoarding design and erection
  • Temporary works – Scaffold/access
  • Timber framing
  • Waterproofing
  • Work on or near fragile surfaces


Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust, HM Naval Base, Portsmouth, PO1 3LJ

JCT 2016 Intermediate Building Contract 

HM Royal Naval Base, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO1 3NH