Latest innovations and products in the interiors section of the construction industry.

Bespoke joinery fit-out for The All England Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) at Wimbledon.

Ahmarra Installations have completed a joinery fit-out sub-contract for the world famous tennis club.

A series of orders were secured with the AELTC in which Ahmarra’s skilled joiners worked to tight deadlines to deliver the scheme in time for this year’s Championships, whilst ensuring the promised high quality levels of finish and design.
Ahmarra Installations undertook work in the Aorangi Pavilion, Millennium Building and the new areas underneath Courts 14 and 15, which houses the 24-hour media restaurant, a bespoke working area for some 250 photographers as well as new accommodation for the ball boys and girls. This order forms part of AELTC’s Master Plan for the Club and The Championships which includes the construction of a new retractable roof over No.1 Court.
“We are delighted to be associated with such a prestigious British institution and we hope that our efforts will evolve into a long term relationship with this landmark sporting venue” commented Richard Panrucker, Ahmarra Installation’s Director. “Our installation team worked to a very tight programme of works whilst still providing enough flexibility in the project plan to allow for any unforeseen challenges, as it was vital that that we had no negative impact on the day-to-day running of Wimbledon” said Richard.
The highly bespoke works included press, writers and radio desks, dressing room benches, player support desk, wall planter system, counter tops, roller shutter cupboards, shelf units, vanity units, changing cubicles, lecterns and internal fire doors.
For more information, call Ahmarra Installations on 02392 389 076 or visit

Trend Control Systems, the leading international manufacturer and supplier of state-of-the-art Building Energy Management Systems (BEMS), has extended its range of control system components with a new range of pressure independent control valves (PICVs). These innovative devices have been designed to fully optimise the control of thermal comfort and provide significant energy savings.
The Trend range of PICVs is perfect for use in variable flow systems in new builds for both commercial and industrial applications. Now a well-established technology, PICVs provide constant flow regulation under varying pressure conditions and a single product replaces the use of three separate components that would traditionally be required to be installed – a differential pressure regulator, a maximum flow limiter and a temperature control valve.
Ideal for system designers, installers and commissioning specialists looking for a fast, reliable, quiet and easy-to-use solution, Trend’s PICVs improve a building’s thermal comfort, whilst maximising energy savings at the pump. By controlling flows through fan coil units, air handling units and chilled beams fed from variable flow heating and cooling systems, they can adapt to variations in pump speeds, saving energy and minimising wear and tear on these expensive plant components. They also contribute to balanced flow rates and heat outputs across all areas of a building, something that can often be difficult to achieve with traditional configurations.
Trend’s PICVs make specification and installation easy thanks to the ability to pre-set the flow rate between 10-100 per cent of nominal value for the valve. In addition, they also improve system stability and controllability when the flow percentage is adjusted by not limiting the stroke of the flow, but by an independent control element within the valve.
Chris Monson, Trend’s Strategic Marketing Manager, commented, ‘Our new range of PICVs offers absolute and precise control of flow, guaranteed system performance and full optimisation of energy usage. The ability of these devices to reduce excessive flow and pressure acting against control valves also improves the performance, operation and valve lifespan. This new product range is great news for those looking for a single source supplier of control system components, which also includes our popular range of actuators.
For further information please call Trend Marketing on 01403 211888, email or visit

Adactus Housing, which owns and manages over 13,000 properties across the North West of England, has announced it will be fitting Aico Ei208 Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarms featuring new AudioLINK data retrieval technology.

A long standing Aico customer, Adactus Housing has been protecting tenants with Aico smoke and CO alarms for eight years and was keen to take advantage of the new AudioLINK technology to help them with their investigations into CO alarm activation investigations.

AudioLINK allows for invaluable real time data to be extracted via the alarm’s sounder – all you need is an AudioLINK enabled CO alarm, a tablet or smartphone and the free AudioLINK App. This data is converted into an Alarm Status Report, which is simple to review and store. The Report displays useful information about the alarm and detection levels of CO, and can be emailed or stored in a key location for future reference.

Ivan Meredith, Group Gas Compliance Manager at Adactus Housing, explains why he considers AudioLINK to be invaluable: “The added ability to provide us with historic data regarding the presence of CO is a fantastic benefit, helping us to take the right action when ensuring the safety of our tenants. Investigations into CO alarm activations can be lengthy and therefore costly. The ability to extract this data straight from the alarm will give us guidance that we can rely on. It should point us in the right direction right from the offset of every investigation.”

Aico has incorporated AudioLINK technology in to all of its CO alarms, with no additional cost, including the highly popular Ei208 Lithium battery powered CO alarms which is the model Adactus Housing will be installing. These alarms will be fitted in to all Adactus Housing properties with fossil fuel appliances on a phased approach. This approach will be a risk based assessment ultimately giving vulnerable tenants first priority. The aim is to install one CO alarm per property but, once the initial programme is completed, this may evolve to adding a second or even third alarm to properties that would benefit from the extra protection.

A wholly owned subsidiary of Ei Electronics, Aico are market leaders in residential fire and CO protection in the UK. All alarms are designed and built in Ireland specifically to meet the UK standards and regulations. 2015 sees Aico’s 25th anniversary. With more mains powered domestic smoke alarms installed in the UK’s social housing than any other manufacturer, Aico are tried, tested and trusted. Aico have a dedicated team of Regional Managers to support specifications and supply of products. Aico also offer technical support over the phone and an internal sales team to help with any enquiries.

For more information please visit

New self adhesive rubber flooring reduces downtime and saves costs

Fast, efficient and cost effective: nora systems has launched a pioneering and innovative installation technology called nora nTx. This new system halves installation time and considerably reduces costs. It works on all conventional subsurfaces, even on existing floorings and the flooring can be walked on and cleaned immediately after it is installed. This helps to minimise downtime, especially for renovation work during ongoing operations. The system is also completely moisture tolerable.

Fast and uncomplicated: A one-stop shop for all components

Planning and hence the coordination of installation times with other building or renovation work becomes significantly easier and can be organised with greater flexibility. The back of noraplan floorings is lined with a rubber based adhesive under a protective film that is simply peeled off prior to installation. The range also includes special nora nTx installation materials like filler and primer for preparing the subsurface; all components are perfectly matched to each other. “For our customers, this system solution from one source is a major advantage in all respects,” claims Andreas Mueller, Managing Director of nora systems. Unlike conventional wet adhesive for bonding, the nora nTx technology eliminates a number of steps in the operation process, for example; applying the adhesive and, as there is no drying or airing out time, flaws are minimised. The ability to apply nora nTx onto surfaces with high residual moisture also saves additional waiting time.

Ideal for renovations during ongoing operations

“The installation on fitted floor coverings does not pose any problems provided that they still offer adequate adhesion. nora nTx is therefore ideal for renovation measures,” stresses Uwe Bauer, Head of Application Engineering at nora systems. The old floorings need only be slightly roughened and, if necessary, primed, so there is very little dust and dirt during the installation – a huge advantage for renovation during ongoing operations, for instance in hospitals or day units. Directly after installation, the rooms or corridors can be walked on, cleaned, arranged with furniture, and used. At the same time, hazards to the health of patients and staff are minimised. One further advantage is the reliability for the responsible planners: nora nTx helps them to comply reliably with their new building or renovation schedules.

nora nTx is available for the products noraplan sentica, signa, stone, unita, and eco.
For perfect preparation of the substrate, nora offers a variety of nora nTx installation materials. These have been developed specifically for the installation of nora nTx flooring. The perfect match between installation materials and flooring ensures functional safety and guarantees the highest standard of quality. In addition, all nora nTx installation materials can also be used at higher residual moisture levels in the substrate.

In the USA, this innovative system solution has already won an award. The renowned magazine Architectural Record voted this flooring, among over 500 candidates, the best product in the category “Finishes and Surfacing”.

For full details please visit

With the housing market continuing to grow, architects and specifiers are increasingly looking for ways to create stand-out design and enhance the kerb appeal of their builds. As a result, the UK’s largest brickmaker, Ibstock, is seeing a rise in demand across its innovative glazed brick range.

Ibstock’s portfolio features real ceramic glazes in a huge variety of colours, sizes and finishes – such as frosted, gloss and satin. By using glazed brick, specifiers are able to use depth and colour to create impressive façades and add innovative and striking design elements to any build.

Suitable for most masonry applications and elevations, Ibstock’s glazed range has already been applied to a host of striking commercial and residential builds across the UK.

Creating colourful spaces

One building project to realise the design potential of glazed bricks is Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge. Used to create an exciting and colourful design, whilst seamlessly integrating new and existing buildings, the architect specified the innovative glazed slip for the creation of a series of ‘lecture pods’ – a number of modern and welcoming areas for students to relax or study between lectures, which have been strategically placed to break up the façade.

A number of internal circular walls were installed to create the new lecture pods before the rainbow assortment of glazed slips in blue, red, orange, yellow and grey were applied. Against a contrast of timber cladding, the bricks delivered a fresh and modern finish to enhance the building’s environment.

As well as its ease of use, a major advantage of glazed brick is its ability to speed up construction without sacrificing visual appeal. For example, to minimise on-site construction at Anglia Ruskin University, the circular walls were built using blockwork before being clad with the glazed slips, which removed the need for traditional brickwork.

Adding distinction

Ibstock’s glazed range has also been used to great effect in the regeneration of the Acton Housing Scheme in Ealing, West London. The latest phase of the development involved creating an elegant gateway to South Acton, which is comprised of 8 to 10 storey residential blocks arranged around a south facing courtyard.
To break up the perceived mass of the buildings, the architect used large panels of glazed brickwork to create a striking façade in a palette of sky blue, white and a bespoke pale mint. The use of the large panels of glazed brick creates simple yet effective variations between the residential blocks.

To provide a comprehensive overview of the design possibilities achievable through the use of glazed brick, Ibstock recently launched its new edition of ‘Design’ magazine, which is dedicated to this exciting range.
Andrew Halstead-Smith, Group Marketing Manager at Ibstock, comments: “As demonstrated through the success of these two very different projects, the glazed range responds to the need to set buildings apart and achieve striking designs by offering specifiers a varied and vibrant selection of brick solutions. The wide choice of colours and finishes, coupled with the ease of installation, means those tasked with creating stand-out design can do so with minimum effort.”

To obtain the latest issue of Design or find out more about the range of glazed bricks available, visit

Dark Concrete is one of four stunning quartz colours just launched by COMPAC, innovators in surface technology for over 40 years.

Inspired by America’s loft culture, Dark Concrete is part of COMPAC’s New York Collection, a unique quartz worksurface range that explores an industrial and urban aesthetic which will change the way we think about worksurfaces.

Smooth, silky and sensuous to the touch, the New York Collection will excite the senses by offering the opportunity to create contemporary kitchens that replicates the style and uniqueness of loft living in the ‘Big Apple’.

The New York Collection consists of seven urban colours including new additions: Dark Concrete, Ice Concrete, Beige Concrete and Beige Zement. All with exclusive finishes, depth of colour and definition of grain –all durable, hygienic, easy to clean and maintain.

For more information please visit

Scottish Widows Investments have selected Kemmlit lockers for their impressive new London offices.

The lockers are manufactured from galvanised sheet steel with a scratch and abrasion resistant stove enamelled finish and can be configured to provide a wide range of options.
For this project, architects Morrow & Lorraine specified Kemmlit’s Type S2Z lockers which offer integrated air duct ventilation and clothes hanging/drying facilities for those employees who cycle or jog to work. There are also compartments for storing footwear, rug sacks, and valuables.
S2Z lockers are part of an extensive range of high performance cubicle and locker systems from Kemmlit who also offer a design, project management and installation service.
For more information please email or visit

The latest edition of Ibstock’s inspirational ‘Design’ magazine is now available, showcasing the virtually limitless choice of colours, sizes and finishes from the UK’s largest brick maker’s industry-leading glazed brick range.

The new issue offers a comprehensive overview of the design possibilities achievable through use of glazed brick. It features a number of recent outstanding building projects where the flexibility, visibility and vibrancy of this brick style have been used to stunning effect.

Projects as diverse as Anglian Ruskin University, Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium, West Hampstead Station and Humberside Divisional Police Headquarters are just a few of the many award-winning architectural examples covered, where the use of glazed brick has helped to enhance the overall visual appeal of the structure.

The wide palette of colour options and finishes available, such as gloss, frosted, and satin, is also detailed within the edition, highlighting the variety on offer.

Andrew Halstead-Smith, Group Marketing Manager at Ibstock, comments: “The latest issue of ‘Design’ responds to the need to set buildings apart and achieve striking designs, by focusing on one of the most inspiring styles of brick. It brings together a number of examples of where glazed brick has made a significant contribution to the completion of a memorable building. A number of the projects have also been recognised at the BDA Brick Awards, testimony to the powerful impact of this brick style.

“There is a wide variety of colour, finish and size choices available within glazed brick. We even offer glow-in-the-dark options! The use of glazed bricks can add depth and intensity of colour to a building and they’re suitable for use across landscapes and all building types.

“Highly skilled ceramicists carefully mix the glazes to match the brick body and create beautiful tones of colours, which makes each glazed brick so unique. Manufactured from ultra-pure clays specially selected for their high quality and unique properties, Ibstock’s state-of-the-art technologies also ensure glazed bricks attain the highest possible standards of performance and finish to satisfy the most demanding of designs.”

To obtain the latest issue of Design or find out more about the range of glazed bricks available, visit

Fife Council, awarded the Council of the Year in Service Delivery 2014 by the Association for Public Service Excellence, is undergoing a programme to install 30,000 Aico Ei414 Fire/Carbon Monoxide (CO) Alarm Interfaces throughout its housing stock.

The Ei414 is a flexible device that provides a dedicated connection between Aico RadioLINK Smoke, Heat and CO alarms with most new and existing Telecare/Warden Call Systems, enabling an emergency signal to be transmitted directly to that system if fire or CO is detected.

Previously Fife Council had been using different components which did not ‘talk’ to each other, resulting in a potential safety issue. The new Ei414 overcomes this, directly interacting with the different systems fitted within the properties to ensure the safety of the Council’s tenants.

Fife Council played an important role in the development of this innovative product, working with Aico and parent manufacturer Ei Electronics. Jim Macdonald, Lead Officer Specialist Services, Communities/Housing Services explains: “Following an incident within a property I met with the management of Ei Electronics and discussed our requirements to have a user friendly product which makes better use of the RF [RadioLINK Radio Frequency wireless alarm interconnection] to integrate different appliances and detection systems installed in Fife Council’s properties i.e. sprinkler systems, warden call, community alarms, extruder alarms, etc. I found Ei Electronics to be very helpful and willing to listen to the requirements of their clients and not force their agenda on us.”

The Ei414 Fire/CO Alarm Interface is the result of this collaboration and was tested by Fife Council from September 2014. It has been developed to enable connection to Telecare/Warden Call Systems wirelessly or via hard wiring directly between the two devices.

Fife Council has been so pleased with the results of the test that the decision was made to not only install the Interface into its sheltered housing properties and complexes but, due to the nature of its tenure, throughout its entire housing stock, which equates to approximately 30,000 units. Due to the flexibility of the Ei414, a property’s smoke and CO alarms can be connected with sprinkler systems, warden call, panel systems and community alarms.

Fife Council is a long standing Aico customer, very forward thinking in its approach to tenant safety. “Fife Council have always had a good working relationship with Aico and found them very helpful when discussing the products available and their uses” states Jim, “as well as planning and training not only Fife Council Operatives but also our partners.” Fife Council also had bespoke hands on training at Aico’s Centre of Excellence in Oswestry.

The Ei414 can be powered directly from the mains or from a 12-24V DC supply, from the Telecare/Warden Call Systems for example, and has built-in tamper-proof rechargeable Lithium Cells which will power the device in the event of any mains failure.

Exceptionally easy to use, the Ei414 features a removable key with three positional settings: On, Off and Test. When ‘On’ the Ei414 responds to an alarm signal generated from a House Coded RadioLINK Aico Smoke, Heat or CO alarms, and switches the relevant ‘Fire’ or ‘CO’ relay contact to trigger the Telecare/Warden Call Systems. The ‘Off’ position prevents any Aico House Coded RadioLINK Signals, be they Fire, CO or Service Alarm triggers, being sent to the Telecare/Warden Call Systems, which is particularly useful should a property becomes vacant or the tenant not require the assisted living function enabling. Finally, the ‘Test’ setting allows a responsible person such as a local authorised Warden or Fire/Maintenance Engineer to functionally test the entire system, which would include a signal being transmitted to the Telecare/Warden Call Systems. LED indicators provide visual confirmation of mains power and fire or CO alarm activation.

A wholly owned subsidiary of Ei Electronics, Aico is a market leader in residential fire and CO protection in the UK. All alarms are designed and built in Ireland specifically to meet the UK standards and regulations. 2015 sees Aico’s 25th anniversary. With more mains powered domestic smoke alarms installed in the UK’s social housing than any other manufacturer, Aico is tried, tested and trusted. Aico has a dedicated team of Regional Managers to support specifications and supply of products. Aico also offers technical support over the phone and an internal sales team to help with any enquiries.

For more information please go to or contact Aico on 01691 664100 or

Maintaining precise temperature and humidity levels to protect its extensive artefact collection, while keeping energy costs and emissions down at its award winning Downland Gridshell Building, were key requirements for the management at the Weald Down Open Air Museum when selecting a replacement for an inefficient old boiler serving the building’s underfloor heating system.

Their choice was an ATAG Q60S condensing combination boiler, one of the most efficient light commercial boilers on the market, supplied by Chichester-based ATAG Heating UK.

‘The new boiler will ensure the correct level of relative humidity within our artefact store for the continued wellbeing of the important collections housed there,’
said Guy Viney, Gridshell Manager.

“We needed a boiler with a track record of efficiency, longevity and reliability, with affordable running costs,” he said. “Guided by our heating engineer Damien Lindley and Robin Osborne from ATAG and following testimonials from colleagues within the heritage industry, we felt confident that ATAG would fulfill all these requirements.”

In line with the overall ethos of the museum, environmental issues were also top of the agenda in their choice of boiler. The Q60S delivers strongly in this aspect with what ATAG believes to be the lowest NOx emissions in its class at below 30ppm.
With an output up to 57.3kW, the Q60S features ATAG’s tried and tested 316 stainless steel heat exchanger technology currently used throughout their boiler range, and gives a class leading efficiency of 109.3% (EN677) achieved through seamless upwards modulation. This enables the boiler to deliver precisely the amount of heat required any one time to preserve the artefacts, while ensuring maximum efficiency and lower energy costs for the museum.

All models in the Q Series have 3 BREEAM points for their excellent energy saving credentials and low emissions. Easy to install and occupying a small footprint, Q Series boilers are well proven in the marketplace and have an enviable reputation for their ease of servicing and reliability. Reliability was a key factor, as the correct humidity levels have to be maintained 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

The Downland Gridshell itself is an award winning building, combining traditional materials and 21st Century technology. The building is on two levels with the basement housing the museum’s unique collection of tools and artefacts, while the upper deck  is a workshop and layout space for building  conservation and training.

A lightweight structure made of oak laths similar in construction to the fuselage of the famous World War II Wellington bomber, a cross section of which is also displayed at the museum, the Gridshell was completed in 2002 with financial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Artefacts on display include an extensive and unique collection of traditional carpentry, plumbing and blacksmithing tools.

The Museum’s 40-acre site in the heart of the South Downs National park incorporates 50 exhibition buildings with many of the houses on show furnished to recreate historic domestic interiors. Buildings include workers’ cottages, shops, farmhouses, barns and even a church. Many have been rescued from demolition or from simply falling down, then dismantled, conserved and painstakingly rebuilt.

“Preserving and stimulating interest in buildings of architectural or historical interest and the ancient crafts and trades that go into them is our prime objective,” said Museum Director, Richard Pailthorpe. “We have over 120,000 visitors every year, including those staying in the area and as a registered charity rely on a veritable army of volunteers to ensure the highest standards of care for our collections.”

There is a regular programme of domestic and craft demonstrations, including cooking in a Tudor kitchen; milling flour in a fully working watermill; blacksmithing in a Victorian smithy and other seasonal demonstrations and events.

Full details of this unique museum can be found at or by phoning 01243 811363.