Cinema is the perfect Showcase for direct replacement

Cinema is the perfect Showcase for direct replacement

When Showcase Cinemas decided to replace the air handling units at some of its UK sites, Weatherite’s ‘direct replacement’ air handling systems delivered a reliable, cost effective, energy efficient, long lasting solution.

Showcase Cinemas is a major UK cinema chain, owned and operated by National Amusements Inc. Efficient air handling is essential to the comfort of its cinemagoers and staff. Unreliability and the cost of continually replacing components had become a concern with some of the existing air handling units, a number of which were failing in well under the 15 year life cycle expected with this type of equipment.

Showcase Cinemas investigated replacing the equipment with standard proprietary units, however, this proved unviable due to unit size, space constraints and the cost and down time involved in moving M&E services to connect with the new units.

Showcase’s Consultants, Hoare Lea contacted Weatherite who suggested replacing the old AHU’s with ‘bespoke direct replacements’ that match the existing units in terms of size, footprint and positioning of service connections. Using the latest technology, such as EC fans, scroll compressors, high efficiency indirect gas fired heaters and web-enabled Trend control systems, Weatherite’s solution also delivered high operational efficiency and energy savings.

Weatherite also developed bespoke BMS software for the control systems integration which has given National Amusements real time access to each of the AHU’s performance and operational data. The software allows the client to make adjustments remotely, and includes self-diagnostics to aid maintenance of the equipment.

The first Showcase Cinema to be updated with new Weatherite equipment was Walsall, in the West Midlands where 14 AHU’s were installed over a three-day cycle. In conjunction with Elite Air Services Ltd, Showcase’s service and maintenance company, Weatherite carried out the work after the last evening performance, working overnight until the building was handed back ready for the following day’s screenings.

Weatherite also supplied the new centralised control access system and carried out the commissioning with Showcase’s BMS contractor, to ensure everything ran smoothly. The success of the Walsall project has led to further installations in Coventry and Teeside.

The direct replacement approach has delivered many benefits to the client. The new system features ‘like for like’ equipment in terms of air volumes, heating and cooling performance and M&E service connections. It will also substantially reduce ongoing energy costs.

Thanks to the overnight installation process, system downtime was minimised and no business days were lost. The control software provides much greater management information in real time, plus immediate control of the operating system.

For further information please contact Steve Cartledge, Sales Director, Weatherite Manufacturing Limited on
+44 (0) 121 665 2266; email: or visit

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