Fairbrother was engaged directly by Mount Alexander Shire Council to facilitate conservation works on the Castlemaine Market Building.
The building was constructed in 1862 and operated as a market for 155 years and is now the Castlemaine Visitor Information Centre.
The site is of state heritage significance being included on the Victorian Heritage Register (H0130) and protected by an individual Heritage Overlay Control, Castlemaine Market Building (HO646) under the local planning scheme. As such, we were required to exercise due care to ensure the original building fabric was left undisturbed where possible, and all works needed approval by the Superintendent before proceeding.
The internal proposed works consisted of observing the current status of the brick composition and structural nature, after using the nominated paint removal process to reveal the decaying façade.
Presentation of suitable locally sourced hand-made bricks for approval by the Heritage Architects, were then meticulously installed to replace the defective bricks, that were damaged by rising damp and therefore salts within.
Once replaced, a salt-removal cocoon was applied to the internal brick piers, up to a defined level whereby the moisture level tested was being held within the bricks. Salt testing was conducted in the bricks before works commenced, and during the salt removal process, to help monitor the process and the impact it was making.
A chemical dampcourse was then injected into the lower brick course, to help prevent future rising damp issues.
Finally, a cosmetic treatment of limewash was sampled and approved for applying to the exposed brickwork. This limewash treatment was chosen due to its breathable properties, which in itself will aid in the rising damp issues in the future.
In conclusion of the works within a live Visitor Centre, the Shire Council were extremely pleased with the process-driven results of the works conducted by Fairbrother.