Chubb Fire protects historic Dumfries house

Dec 20, 2008


A wireless fire-detection technology from Chubb Fire now protects one of Scotland’s most historic homes.

Dumfries House, one of the most architecturally significant stately homes in the U.K., has a system that protects the building, visitors, and many priceless furniture items inside without interfering with the aesthetics of the building.

The building, last inhabited in 1993, needed major renovations before it was recently reopened by HRH Prince of Wales.

In doing the work, “It was imperative that we not alter the ceilings and walls, so that need eliminated a conventional wired detection and alarm system, says Mike Schafer, chief executive of the Great Steward of Scotland’s Dumfries House Trust. “With a tight timeframe to complete the work, we also chose a wireless system to avoid the time-consuming disruption of placing wires.”

Chubb Fire’s wireless radio analogue system features detectors discreetly placed around the house and linked to two control panels. They monitor all detection devices, control sounders and signals, and provide power and battery backup.

“We selected Chubb Fire on competitive tender as they offered good customer service at a realistic price. I had worked with Brian Kemp, a Chubb Fire senior sales engineer, on previous projects, and knew him to be professional and reliable.”

Under Scottish fire safety legislation, the Trust was obliged to assess the fire risk and to remove or reduce the risk, and it appointed Chubb to conduct the survey. In addition to providing systems to detect a fire, Chubb also supplied extinguishers to contain a fire should, and it will maintain both the systems and the extinguishers.

Designed by renowned 18th century architect brothers John, Robert and James Adam, Dumfries House in Ayrshire has a unique collection of Chippendale furniture, and rooms and their contents that have remained virtually unchanged throughout its history. The ceilings in particular are among the finest of their kind. Major work was required to make the house suitable for visitors after more than two centuries in private hands. The house was purchased in 2007 by a consortium of charities and heritage bodies, led by Prince Charles.