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Identification Any ideas what this is?

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Topic starter

Hi. Can anyone help me with what type of construction this is? As far as I can see the party walls are concrete, the gable looks like brick between two concrete corners and front elevation is either a thin steel or timber frame with UPVC cladding? Any suggestions very welcome. Thank you in advance.

David B David B 28 May 2024 2:53 PM

@neilb123 Can you provide a postcode please Neil, so I can have a good look on Streetview?


Community 3 neilb123 Topic starter 28 May 2024 4:41 PM

Hi, Thanks for your interest! GL2 7LD

1 Answer

Hello Neil, I've been unable to access the forums for a while, but I'm really quite pleased to see your post, simply because it's not construction type that we've had posted here before.

I'm pleased to tell you that I have actually identified the property and I'm pleased to share the results with you.

What you have there is a refurbished XW house, or otherwise known as a Selleck Nicholls & Williams XW house. 
There's not a great deal of information available regarding this construction type, but I've provided some information below, which I hope you find useful. I look forward to reading your comments.

Manufacturer: Selleck Nicholls & Williams Ltd
Designer: Selleck Nicholls & Williams Ltd
Period built: 1960s onwards
Number built: 3700
Alternative names: Selleck Nicholls - Selleck Nicholls & Williams - SNW XW

XW Identification & Construction Characteristics

xw construction selleck nicholls

Image above - Park View, Saul, Gloucester 2010

These houses are constructed as follows-

xw house selleck nicholls construction

Bungalows and 2-storey terraced houses.
Medium pitch gable roof covered with interlocking concrete tiles or flat roof covered with bituminous felt.
Front and rear external walls of eaves height exposed aggregate PC panels infilled with hardboard or other claddings.
Gable wall of brick throughout.

Substructure: Concrete strip footings, Concrete slab and DPC.

External walls: Front and rear walls of eaves height 4'2" and 6'8" PC panels lined with foil-backed honeycomb plasterboard on timber battens.

Storey height timber frame panels fixed to Precast Concrete (PC) panels with galvanised MS brackets and clad with oil tempered hardboard backed with bituminous felt and lined with plasterboard.

Polystyrene insulation between frame studs. Rolled Steel Channel, 3" x 2" timber blocks.
Gable wall of brick, cavity, 4" storey height PC panels lined with plasterboard on timber battens. 1/4" MS hinge rod, 1/2" MS loop tie at top of ground and first floor panels encased in concrete. Timber frame gable apex, polythene membrane.
Separating wall: Storey height 6" PC panels lined with plasterboard on timber battens.
Partitions: Timber stud lined with plasterboard.
Ground floor: Concrete.
First floor: Timber joists on bitumen-coated joist hangers

Failure to mate vertical lacing bar with panel loop bars.
Low cover to the PRC panels.
Corrosion of embedded mesh reinforcement found during examinations.
Some honeycombing noted in concrete crosswalls.
Variable rates of carbonation and low chloride content in Precast Concrete panels.
The system was also used for flats.


Community 3 neilb123 Topic starter 31 May 2024 9:14 AM

@nsh-team Wow, That's fantastic information, thank you very much. I've never seen a house like it before so had no idea what it was.

When you say its 'refurbished' do you have any idea what work was done and whether this house is considered 'defective' or not.


Admin Admin 31 May 2024 3:08 PM

It's difficult to say exactly what work was undertaken but there are clear visible changes to the properties when viewed using the 'see more dates' feature inside Google Street View.

I'm guessing that the occupiers may have just updated the front and rear elevations of the property with modern windows and UPVC cladding to obtain a cleaner look. I've got no way of checking if additional works were undertaken.

I've added two Streetview images below, the first dated 2023 and the second, dated August 2010.

2024 05 31 15h03 01
2024 05 31 15h02 06
Community 3 neilb123 Topic starter 31 May 2024 7:36 PM

@nsh-team Oh I see now. I thought you'd been able to see that some remedial work had been done. My main concern is to establish how mortgageable these houses are. Do you think these houses would require any kind of PRC Certificate?

Thank you so much for the information you have found out for me. If I manage to find out anymore I'll of course post it! 


Admin Admin 3 June 2024 9:47 PM
This post was modified 2 weeks ago 9 times by Admin

@neilb123 XW houses do not require a PRC repair certificate because they have never been classified as Defective under housing act legislation.

Only a relatively small number of named Precast Reinforced Concrete (PRC) systems were designated as defective. Unfortunately the stigma associated with that limited group of defective PRC properties has inadvertently affected all PRC system builds to one degree or another, with many people wrongly assuming that all PRC houses and sometimes all Non-Traditional houses are defective and/or at least require a PRC certificate, which is plainly incorrect. 

It simplest terms, if a property is not no the official Housing act Defects list 1985, then it has not been classified as defective and it does not require certification of any kind.

Please see below:-


Part XVI of the 1985 Housing Act

The post-war housing shortage led to a boom in new ‘non-traditional’ methods of house construction which were mainly taken up by local and public authorities. In the early 1980s studies carried out by the Building Research Establishment revealed problems with some of these methods, for example, where prefabricated reinforced concrete had been used it was found that steel reinforcing rods had rusted causing the surrounding concrete to crack.
In 1984 the Government introduced a statutory scheme of assistance for people who had purchased a 'designated defective' type of property from a public authority without knowledge of the defect. The 1984 Housing Defects Act, which was later consolidated into Part XVI of the 1985 Housing Act, provided for a 90% grant towards the cost of repairing the defect, subject to an expenditure limit, or repurchase at 95% of the defect free value.


The following types of properties were ‘designated defective’ by the Secretary of State and included in Part XVI of the Housing Defects Act 1985:


Airey08.09.1982 EnglandPRC26,000
Boot Beaucrete26.04.1984 EnglandPRC2
Boswell23.12.1986 EnglandPRC4000
*Cornish Unit Type 126.04.1984 EnglandPRC30,000 (Types I and II)
+Cornish Unit Type 226.04.1984 EnglandPRC30,000 (Types I and II)
*Dorran Type 126.04.1984 EnglandPRC
+Dorran Type 226.04.1984 EnglandPRC
Dyke Clotted Concrete Construction26.04.1984 EnglandPRC450
Gregory26.04.1984 EnglandPRC1500
*Myton Type 126.04.1984 EnglandPRC
+Myton Type 226.04.1984 EnglandPRC
*Newland Type 126.04.1984 EnglandPRC
+Newland Type 226.04.1984 EnglandPRC
Orlit Type 1 26.04.1984 EnglandPRC17,000 (Types I and II)
Parkinson26.04.1984 EnglandPRC3000
Reema Hollow Panel26.04.1984 EnglandPRC17,600
Schindler 26.04.1984 EnglandPRC1400
Smith19.12.1985 EnglandPRC4,500
Stent26.04.1984 EnglandPRC1250
Stonecrete26.04.1984 EnglandPRCN/A
*Tarran (1)26.04.1984 EnglandPRC
+Tarran (2)26.04.1984 EnglandPRC
Underdown26.04.1984 EnglandPRC4700 (includes Winget)
*Unity Typ1 26.04.1984 EnglandPRC19,000 (includes Types I and II)
+Unity Type 2 26.04.1984 EnglandPRC19,000 (includes Types I and II)
Waller26.04.1984 EnglandPRCN/A
Wates26.04.1984 EnglandPRC22,000
*Wessex (1)26.04.1984 EnglandPRC
+Wessex (2)26.04.1984 EnglandPRC
Winget26.04.1984 EnglandPRC4700 (includes Underdown)
Woolaway26.04.1984 EnglandPRC5.500
Ayrshire County Council (Lindsay)Part 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC750
Tarran-ClydePart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC8000 (includes Dorran, Myton,
Newland and Tarran)
Tee BeamPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC260
UnitroyPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC200
Whitson-FairhurstPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC
Boot Part 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC8,600
DorranPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC
OrlitPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC
TarranPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC
WingetPart 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC
Lilleshall Part 14 of the Housing (Scotland) Act 1987PRC
Parkinson FramePRC
Hawksley SGS26.04.1984 EnglandPRC
Boot Pier and PanelPRC8,600
Orlit Type 2PRC17,000 (Types I and II)
Tarran Temporary Bungalow26.04.1984 EnglandPRCN/A
Ulster CottagePRC
*Butterly Type 126.04.1984 EnglandPRC
+Butterly Type 226.04.1984 EnglandPRC

Community 3 neilb123 Topic starter 4 June 2024 8:10 AM

@nsh-team Thank you, that's very re-assuring. I really appreciate your advice!