Installation of a flat pack heat recovery AHU with restricted site access

Working with DOC Building facilities Ltd (Degrees of Comfort) at West Berkshire Council offices, VES manufactured and installed a bespoke, ErP compliant, air handling unit with heat recovery, flat packed to suit on-site space restrictions.
Degrees of Comfort
Office buildings
Restricted access to build a flat pack AHU
A build that was completed on time, above and beyond customer's satisfaction.
West Berkshire Council case study
West Berkshire Council case study plant room access
Plant room access
West Berkshire Council case study original AHU
Original AHU
West Berkshire Council case study original belt driven fan
Original belt driven fan


West Berkshire Council Offices undertook a building refurbishment and as part of this, their building services were also under review to ensure the indoor air quality and building operation were achieving occupant comfort.

The consultation review identified the ventilation plant was deteriorating and as a result, a replacement air handling unit was specified.

A challenge arose from the specification with the limited access on site and the requirement to incorporate heat recovery into the new AHU design, which identified feasibility concerns for the client.

West Berkshire Council case study


VES used their manufacturing expertise and undertook a full site survey prior to undertaking the works and supplied the client with a cost-effective option for AHU replacement and due to the onsite space restrictions, a thermal wheel was selected as the heat recovery device.

The flexibility of VES’ Max range allowed an AHU design that fit within the space constraints, but still ensured that the unit would be achieving the specific requirements for the customer.

When designing the unit, each component was specifically selected to ensure the size and depth was suitable to be manoeuvred through the plant room. The selected thermal wheel was supplied and delivered to the site in sections.

Once the unit was delivered and positioned onto the office roof, VES engineers attended site to manoeuvre the components into the plant room before re-assembling the air handling unit.

West Berkshire Council case study installed EC fans
Installed EC fan

The VES team were very responsive to the project due to the time constraints. They completed the site visit and provided a solution to this challenging

The whole process was extremely efficient, with excellent communication and design proposals. The AHU was delivered and installed on time, it was great credit to VES, and their level of customer service could not be faulted on this project.

Director Degrees of Comfort


The restricted access challenge was overcome through designing and building a bespoke flat packed air handling unit at VES HQ, which was then delivered and re-built from component format on site. The unit re-build was completed in line with the project programme and to the customer’s satisfaction.

West Berkshire Council now have an ErP 2018 compliant heat recovery air handling unit achieving design and providing improved indoor air quality to the offices.

Degrees of Comfort were very happy with the work undertaken by the VES team and intend to use VES again for future projects.