Rubb 40 year project highlights timeline

Take a look back over the past 40 years of Rubb UK. Explore project highlights and turning points in the company’s history.


Rubb Buildings Ltd started life as Rixbourne Ltd (and later Norsafe Ltd) under the management of Finn Haldorsen, who appointed Bill Wood as General Works Manager.


Rubb completes first building design (hand drawn), manufacture and construction with a 12m x 42m ‘arch design’ (an early incarnation of the NV) for Coleman Milne for £6700. The company also completed a 12m x 15m NV for Sony UK.


The Red Arrows got in touch with Rubb to order a small storage building. The 12m x 12m NV building was delivered to RAF Kemble in Cirencester and marked the start of Rubb’s longstanding relationship with the UK MoD.


Norsafe Ltd was renamed Rubb Buildings Ltd after the Norwegian town of its origin, Rubbestadneset.


Rubb won a contract for four 16.5m span NV hangars for the Tornado Squadron at RAF Cottesmore.


Several buildings supplied to Mercedes Benz UK. The company developed bigger 20m span hangars NV and 28 structures with Fast Jet Doors were delivered to Port Stanley in the Falkland Islands, earning it the nickname of ‘Rubb Alley’. A 25m span x 36m hangar designed to house a Chinook helicopter was later delivered to Goose Green. The Atlantic Conveyor, which was built on the Tyne by Swan Hunter, was hit by enemy fire en route to the Falklands whilst carrying crew, aircraft and equipment. Twelve lost their lives and huge volume of stores, three Chinooks, six Wessex helicopters and a Lynx helicopter were lost, including their specialist tools and spares (Think Defence). Afterwards Rubb worked around the clock to manufacture hangar related items that were lost. The famous Bravo November Chinook survived (it was in the air at the time of the attack) and went on to be housed in Rubb buildings in deployments to Bosnia and Afghanistan.


Rubb’s first sports structure for Monty Hind Youth Club was constructed measuring 16.5m wide x 45m long, with 4m high sidewalls. The first of seven buildings is delivered to Swan Hunter (25m span x 48m long BVL, with 7m sidewalls). Finn Haldorsen establishes Rubb Inc in the USA.


Rubb constructs 22m wide x 24m long facility for Govan Shipbuilders. Four additional buildings constructed for Swan Hunter (27m wide x 24m long BVL).


Rubb delivers personal aircraft hangar measuring 40m x 60m for the Sultan of Brunei.


Brooke Yachts International Ltd order series of structures.


Multiple orders for military structures placed by USAFE.


Building for BAE Systems Marine Ltd. Twin 20m x 198m BVEs ordered for Channel Tunnel.


From drawing board to CAD, Computer Aided Design and Drafting software introduced at Rubb. Rubb wins contract for sports building for Lothian Regional Council. First structures for Iveco (40m x 126m BVE x 2 off)


Gateshead Garden Festival tram cover and UFO building. Other highlights include delivering more than 1.5 million square foot of buildings to London’s Tilbury Docks in the early 90s. Rubb’s relocatable structures proved to be the ideal solution for port storage. This multi-million pound contract saw Rubb successfully deliver one of its first large scale turnkey projects. Additional structure for Iveco measuring 24m x 51m. Rubb returns to Swan Hunter with an additional BVL structure.


Dundee Port Authority orders a 27m x 87m port structure.


More structures purchased by Port of Tilbury. Aviation building for Australian Jet Charter. Final 27m span building delivered for Swan Hunter.


Emergency Relief structures supplied to CAFOD.


Emergency Relief facilities delivered for British Red Cross and Oxfam. Storage building constructed for Boots UK.


Development of the Rapid Erect Hangar (REH) and 34 supplied to UK MoD. NV building for Bonds Foundry.


Rubb came up with a solution to house the UK Royal Air Force’s Nimrod MRA4 aircraft is a custom designed Rubb aircraft hangar. This large hangar at RAF Kinloss features a span of 48.5m and measures 45m in length, with a leg height of 5.5m. It was designed to be fully relocatable should the need arise. Additional port structure measuring 24m x 85m was constructed at Port of Tilbury.


Rubb developed and built a 10,000 square metre extension at Port of Tilbury.


Structures delivered for Port of Blyth, Associated British Ports and Siemens. NV hangars deployed to Bosnia.


Research and Development for Rubb Rapid Environmental Shelter or RES (EFASS). 19m x 24m storage building for Rolls Royce. Two NV structures measuring 20m x 42m and 10m x 21m for Lockheed Martin.


Two NV buildings for Port of Workington (25m x 32m, 25m x 60m). BVR for Toyota Motor Manufacturing.


Rubb Buildings UK completed construction of a relocatable service aircraft hangar for Scot Airways now known as Loganair Ltd in Dundee, Scotland. This contract followed similar projects in the UK for CityFlyer at Gatwick Airport. Rubb also joined forces with Rolls Royce to produce two structures to house a £2 million turbulence control screen (TCS).


52 EFASS hangars ordered by the UK MoD, and a second contract with Bond Helicopters (CHC Ireland) for a 25m span x 24m long hangar at Dublin Airport. Rubb celebrates 25 years of operating in the UK.


Expansion and investment in production space and machinery at Rubb UK. Various RDS projects were developed for military and emergency relief operations.


Eight EFASS hangars delivered to RAF Marham. Rubb solidified its reputation for Premier League sports structures after designing and manufacturing an indoor training facility for Newcastle United Football Club, which houses a full sized football pitch. Rubb provided the 67m span x 90m long training BVL facility – the first big step on the ladder in the sport buildings sector.


Then UK Prime Minister Tony Blair officially opens the Soccarena indoor football complex at Durham.


Rubb further expands its storage portfolio in the ports and environmental sectors. A 40m x 55m sports building was delivered to York University to support its sports expansion programme.


Rubb provides EFASS hangars for the US Army in c. Rising demand for port structures with several delivered to the Port of Belfast. Rubb secured and completed the West Bromwich Albion indoor training facility contract.


The groundbreaking Meadowbank Sports Arena was completed in 2009. John McCloughlin, Chief Executive of Magherafelt District Council and Chief Engineer Ian Glendinning visited the Newcastle United project and the users gave Rubb a glowing report. At 70m x 145m and with sidewalls of 9m Meadowbank was the largest of its kind in Europe at that time. Designed to bring sports facilities into the 21st Century, this top regional venue situated in Magherafelt in the heart of Mid-Ulster, Ireland, can now provide the widest range of indoor and outdoor sports activities available. A triple link facility was also completed for Tradewood Agencies in Northern Ireland.


Additional sport buildings completed for Taunton Vale Sports Club, Stourport Sports Club and Erin’s Own Lavey GAC.


The Rubb Group continues to build on its expertise after a successful merger with Hallmaker Group’s fabric building division. Bristow Helicopter Group approached Rubb to design and manufacture a fabric engineered helicopter hangar, tailor-made for the company’s needs. This required a high level of lighting specification, insulation and inner skin features and a custom-made insulated 20m x 6m manual sliding hangar door. During the process the structure grew from a 35m span x 35m long BVE into a 35m span x 40m long specialist helicopter hangar facility.


Rubb Buildings UK returned to the Falkland Islands – thirty years since it first made its name in military circles with its unique brand of robust and durable structures. Byron Marine, which specialises in marine services around the Falkland Islands, welcomed the arrival of a Rubb BVR building for storage purposes in February 2011.


Rubb designs, manufactures and constructs another Premier League training facility for Sunderland AFC. Rubb Buildings Ltd was also tasked with the design, manufacture and delivery of the 32m span x 40m long sports building for LeAF Elite Athlete Academy, which included two internal beach volleyball courts, complete with sand pits to represent a beach environment. The facility has sidewalls of 10.8m and boasts a clear playing height of 10m inside.


Rubb builds tallest building to date for energy giant E.ON. The biomass fuel storage and processing facility measures 31.5m wide x 137.5m long, with an apex height of 21m. Three steel and aluminium hybrid EFASS delivered to Horizon Flight Academy, UAE.


Ipswich Academy. The split level 20m span x 70m long multi sports complex boasts a 7m high x 33m long playing area based on a four court badminton hall. This area, situated at the rear of the building, can also be converted to one basketball court, one netball court, one tennis court or one 5-aside football pitch. A 4m high x 37 long amenities block completes the front of the facility and includes an entrance lobby, a dance studio, executive studio, changing facilities, four store rooms, a seminar room and a construction zone.


Aerohub, Newquay Cornwall Airport. The Rubb hangar provides 25,000 sq. ft. of aircraft storage and maintenance space. The Thermohall insulated facility measures 47m wide x 50m long with 8m high sidewalls and an overall height of 18m. A Megadoor measuring 43m wide x 14m at its highest point provides access to the hangar. Rubb also flew in to support the Lithuanian Air Force when some new flight line aircraft hangars were needed. The Lithuanian Air Force ordered three new 20.4m span x 12m long EFASS structures with Trident doors at each gable end. When the facility doors are closed the buildings measure 30m nose to nose.


EasyJet. The completed twin span aircraft hangar measures 91.5m wide x 60m long, 9.2m to the eaves and 16.8m to the apex of each span. Each front gable measures 45.7m wide and features a 41m wide x 13.5m vertical lifting fabric door. The facility provides 5200sq m (58,125sq ft) of usable working floorspace and can accommodate two Airbus A321s at the same time. The hot dip galvanized steel frame is clad with 150mm thick Thermohall insulated fabric and a full LED lighting system, ventilation system and LPG heating system has been installed.


NPAS at Doncaster Airport. The steel framed, fabric clad aviation structure measures 40.1m wide x 46.25m long and features a sliding door measuring 30m wide by 5m high. Additional modular buildings have been fitted to right and rear of the building and include a number of offices and amenities. Rubb was tasked with ensuring the Rubb hangar connected effectively to the modular structures and that they were correctly positioned to allow a clear viewing area and access to the hangar.