Solving the lead roofing problemThe theft of lead from roofs and other structures is a growing threat to the heritage of the UK’s historic and public buildings. This has been compounded over recent years by widespread cuts in public funding and the increasing desire to ensure that solutions are sustainable and environmentally friendly.

Most proposed solutions are expensive and even unsightly: increasing general security, using anti vandal paint, or spraying the area with a traceable solution. Some local authority schemes attempt to tackle the problem after the theft has occurred, by targeting the sale of stolen materials.

The only true solution to this problem is the replacement of lead with another material that is much less likely to be subject to criminal damage or theft. Unfortunately, many roofing systems fall short of the mark in terms of either appearance or performance. There is one though that meets most, if not all, of the criteria: Topseal’s GRP (Glass Reinforced Plastic) roofing system.

Will the material perform well in the long-term? Can it cope with complex detail work? Can it be repaired easily? These considerations are relevant to any specification or replacement of lead where aesthetics and performance are paramount considerations and, for GRP, the answer to all of these questions is yes.

This increasingly popular system could spell the end to the general reluctance of many local authorities to replace lead with any modern material, and an end to the expense and security headaches that come with a lead roof.

To suit the requirement for like-for-like aesthetic replacement of lead – a major issue when attempting to replace lead with another system – Topseal has developed a GRP based simulated lead system that looks authentic and can be specified to complement the colour of existing lead work complete with (seamless) rolled joint detailing.

The Topseal system is particularly well suited to complicated detail work and can encapsulate or incorporate the trickiest features without joints.

Topseal’s GRP roofs have also been independently environmentally assessed having achieved the BRE’s Green Guide A or A+ rating depending on the application.

The versatility of the Topseal system ensures that it will fit into almost any style from traditional listed structures to public buildings and modern schools. It has been successfully installed on these types of projects previously and now meets the needs for a modern alternative to lead.

Topseal is a BBA certified GRP roofing system with a materials and workmanship guarantee for up to 30 years. The system has been safely installed onto millions of square metres of roofs around the UK by Topseal’s national network of approved installers since 1992.