Specialist Swimming Pool Construction

Bespoke Indoor Swimming Pool, Pool House and Ground Source Heating System

Riveroak Ltd have recently completed an ambitious indoor pool and gym complex in Purley, Surrey. We project managed all construction work, working closely alongside the architects and specialist swimming pool and heating contractors.

The owners wanted a poolhouse that would not only look as if it was part of the original house but one that was friendly to the environment too. Right from the word go, the building was designed as carbon-neutral with high levels of insulation and a highly efficient ground source heating system.

The entire floor area of the building was constructed on a 250mm reinforced concrete slab which sits upon another 200mm of high density polystyrene insulation. This insulation was continued around the the outside of the poolhouse to just below ground level.


Installing the ground source heating system was a technical challenge because of the restricted area of the garden. The technique involves placing flexible pipes known as 'ground loops' deep into the ground. These are filled with a mixture of water and glycol (antifreeze) which enables heat to be gathered from the ground.  The contents are then pumped through a heat exchanger to capture the heat which can then be used to heat the swimming pool.


Because of the limited space available, eight bore holes were drilled to a depth of 65m, the ground loops inserted and the holes filled with a heat retaining grout.

The ground loops were drawn together at a junction box, before being connected to the heat exchanger by a single pipe. An additional bore hole was drilled  to 110m to supply fresh water to the swimming pool and garden irrigation system.


The poolhouse was built with 140mm thick cavity wall insulation with 2 layers of multi-foil insulation in the roof. The roof itself was supported using a steel frame construction enabling us to form a vaulted ceiling for maximum light and space. Internally we used a specialist stretch vinyl ceiling material usually used in commercial applications, which requires no decoration and is excellent in this environment.


The plant room is located to the front of the property next to a shower and changing room with a raised gym area above overlooking the pool.

The rooflines of the completed poolhouse were designed to compliment the rest of the house. Bi-folding doors enable the pool to be 'opened up' during warmer weather and finally the garden was re-landscaped to cover over the ground source heating system and create a patio area adjacent to the pool and existing buildings.

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