Innovative fire safety work at historic manor wins national praise


An innovative engineering firm’s contribution to protecting a historic listed building from fire has put it in the running for a national award.

Plumis and accredited Automist installer Vapourmist Solutions have been named a finalist in this year’s Security & Fire Excellence Awards for ‘Fire Project of the Year’.

The accolade recognises the part played by the trailblazing British companies to help conserve West Horsley Place, in Surrey.

The 15th century building is owned by a charity, the West Horsley Place Trust, which is seeking to conserve and repair the Grade 1 listed medieval manor house and surrounding 380-acre estate so that they can be enjoyed by the public.

To raise funds, the house has been used as a filming location and was the set for the recent BBC hit series, Ghosts.

Work was carried out as part of the charity’s wider conservation strategy which is working towards being able to remove West Horsley Place from Historic England's 'Heritage at Risk’ register.

To improve fire safety in the building, Plumis worked with installer Vapourmist Solutions to adapt and fit its ‘Automist’ watermist fire suppression system.

Plumis was formed in 2008, with the aim of creating a more affordable and effective alternative to traditional fire sprinkler systems. Automist is easy and cost-effective to install and as it uses less water, results in significantly less damage when activated.

CEO William Makant said: “It was vital to reduce the overall fire risk, protecting the building’s fabric and its contents from damage, while retaining its original aesthetics.

“One of the main reasons for choosing Automist was because the system uses flexible hoses and wall mounted spray heads, making it an adaptable solution to fit around this historic structure without damaging the fabric of the building. It also provided key benefits over other systems, such as directly targeting fire and minimising damage by using 90% less water than traditional sprinklers.

“Now West Horsley Place will be much safer for the public to visit, and our system will provide lasting protection of this very important building for future generations.”

Jo Woodgate-Brown Business Manager at Vapourmist  Solutions said: “I am proud to see our team’s hard work and flexible, can-do attitude recognised by the Security & Fire Excellence Awards judges.

“Given the challenging nature of West Horsley Place, including many technical constraints, our design team effectively integrated the Automist system into this historic building.”

West Horsley Place dates from 1425 but a building has been on the site since Saxon times. Work is currently ongoing to restore the house, gardens, outbuildings and 380-acre estate so that West Horsley Place becomes a  welcoming space for the community to share and enjoy with arts, culture, history and nature at its heart.

Plumis has previously won numerous awards, including the Red Dot Design Award and the Queen’s Award for Enterprise: Innovation.

The company also recently won year’s regional Make UK Manufacturing Awards for ‘SME of the Year’ and ‘Innovation of the Year’.

For further information on West Horsley Place and the West Horsley Place Trust:

About Plumis
Plumis is an innovative UK-based engineering company whose Automist® fire suppression misting technology has saved lives in homes across the UK. Trusted in both the UK and US, Plumis has completed over 10,000 Automist® installations and been honoured as Innovation Category winner in the Queen’s Award for Enterprise.
For more information, visit:

For more information about Vapourmist Solutions contact: Emma Cannon at



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