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Setting Out Survey On Brighton Hospital

Find out how THS Concepts set out the steelwork for a new helipad at the Royal Sussex Hospital in Brighton.

Article By: Tom Ayre | Last Update: November 2020


SMC Global LTD & Bayards (Netherlands)


Survey – 1 Month


Brighton, UK


Tom Ayre

Our Client

In early 2020, THS Concepts were commissioned by SMC Global, a helipad building company specialising in helicopter landing pads for hospitals. They have undertaken a number of builds across the UK including, Edinburgh, Manchester and London.

The Required Work

As part of the ongoing refurbishment/construction at the Royal Sussex Hospital in Brighton, THS Concepts were instructed to undertake the setting out works of a new helipad. The helipad was formed of pre fabricated steel sections that were lifted on to the roof and then formed together, like a big Meccano set!

The element of the works that we were responsible was for setting the initial positions of the build. This is very important as the structure had to sit exactly where planned to ensure that the loads transmitted down the building were on the correct positions.

Currently, helicopters have to land at a school nearby, from which it takes up to 10 minutes to drive to the hospital. The new helipad will have a lift going directly into the Accident and Emergency ward, saving crucial time.

The Solution

Our project scope was to set out elements for the lightweight aluminium structural frame, which will be bolted to an existing steel structure built on the roof. It was quite important that the holes were placed correctly as the helipad structure comes in kit form (Mecano-esque!) with minimal site alterations allowed.

Using our Leica TS15 robotic total station, we positioned the holes for the new structure to bolt down on. The main problem we faced whilst on the site was access to our survey works. What’s more, the roof was very congested with scaffolding and an existing steel frame, so access was very tricky.

The access issue didn’t cause any problems other than slowing us down. We had to be quite tactical with where we set up to ensure we positioned each hole. This project went well, but we, unfortunately, had to stay an extra day on site due to the obstructions slowing us down. Thankfully, the good weather and great view made up for it!


The helipad has now been successfully built on the existing tower block in the hospital. This now allows patients to get into the hospital and treated much quicker.