Marlborough College in Wiltshire, UK is a highly respected independent school for day and boarding pupils. The College was established in 1843 by a group of Church of England clergymen. Today the College is a fully co-educational establishment catering for about 930 pupils with the great majority (98%) being boarders. The Duchess of Cambridge is a former pupil.

Of the full boarding schools across the country, Marlborough was recently ranked 4th with an 82% acceptance rate for pupils to the UK’s top 30 universities, a rating bettered only by Westminster School, St Paul’s School and Winchester College.

As with all buildings that have been in use for some considerable time, Marlborough College’s infrastructure is constantly reviewed and repaired or upgraded as necessary.

Recently part of this ongoing process there was a need for the renovation of a significant part of the College’s North Block including the building’s rainwater drainage system. The system comprises very old and ornate cast iron rain water downpipes that in places are hidden within the fabric of the wall and which take rainwater from the roof to ground level drains. In places these downpipes were leaking causing damp problems within the building. Given their design, location and accessibility they would have been very difficult to replace in keeping with the original building construction so an alternative to full replacement was sought.


In looking at the options available with which to bring the rainwater downpipes back up to the standard required, Mark Norton from Architects Gray, Baynes &am