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Allerton Road Fire & Police Station



Mansard Smartroof System with

Timber Dormers



The redevelopment and conversion of an iconic Liverpool Fire and Police station into an affordable housing development required a modern method of construction that offered buildability, speed of construction and cost certainty. Smartroof’s offsite manufactured modular ‘room in roof’ system met the challenge, playing a significant part in the creation of this greener, more sustainable building scheme.

Immortalised in the Beatles’ song Penny Lane, Allerton Fire and Police Station has been redeveloped by contractor HMS with the former Fire Station being transformed into two 3-bedroom and three 4-bedroom townhouses, two 3-bedroom semi-detached homes, all of which are available via shared ownership.  The Torus owned development will also see the conversion of the former police station into a 40-unit independent living scheme for over 55s, with all apartments available via affordable rent.  A key design feature is the mansard roof which required an offsite manufactured ‘room in roof’ solution with the contractor specifying Smartroof as the company able to deliver and meet their requirements.



Whilst a Smartroof system typically averages 100m2 in size, the contractor HMS required a roof 25 times larger at 2,500m2. Initially this raised concerns for the Smartroof team in terms of logistics of the roof within the scale of the project.  The old police station was refurb and new build, which added challenges for the Smartroof team due to different slab levels throughout the building.  The team also had to work with the existing structure of the building, such as steel that was not previously considered. This resulted in a numerous site visits to reconfigure the design to make it possible. Smartroof’s nationwide contracts managers are site based and work closely with Site/Project Managers.

The advantage of the Smartroof system is that everything is produced in a factory control environment so the challenges experienced at this redevelopment can be overcome in the factory, instead of operatives working at height when a roof is being built.

We worked very closely with the HMS team and also developed a great working relationship with the architect and engineers in order to overcome these design challenges. Such was the success of the system and our involvement, our Smartroof solution saved 16 weeks compared to if HMS used traditional methods of construction.

Tom Wright
Design & Technical Director at Smartroof


The Smartroof system is a complete roof solution, designed to offer housebuilders and developers a way to exploit a new home’s full potential by creating rooms in roofs. Comprising a series of factory produced panels incorporating insulated roof panels, spandrel wall panels, dormers, roof windows, decorative chimneys, soffit and fascia, it is delivered to site and craned into place. The system has many benefits – less waste, better control of quality, safer to install – and meets the industry’s demand for solutions that allow us to build better quality homes, more efficiently.

The controlled environment of the Smartroof offsite fabrication facility meant the technical team could achieve the mansard roof design with millimetre precision both in terms of cutting and fabrication.

Manufactured at the Smartroof factory in Derbyshire, the prefabricated ‘room in roof’ systems were then delivered to the Allerton site, craned into place and installed by the Smartroof team.

Allerton is the second large-scale refurb and new build project HMS has undertaken and as a team, we were keen to implement learnings from previous developments in order to progress the build quickly, yet efficiently. Smartroof and their team offered a complete solution that not only saved us time but embedded greener technologies into the heart of our development programme and one which is now leading the way for how we use innovative build techniques going forward.

John Barrow
Construction Director at HMS

At a time when housebuilders need to embrace new and faster methods of construction as well as comply with more stringent energy efficiency demands, the offsite fabrication of the roofs at the Allerton Police Station redevelopment offered huge benefits in terms of health and safety, speed of construction and quality control.

Smartroof has fabricated and installed a complex and high-performance roofing system which has enabled the developer Torus to reduce costs and build times as well as health and safety risks on site.   The room in roof system has also ensured this iconic police station development remains on track for completion in the spring of 2023.