New ESFA specification guidelines – are you up to date?

 

small Richard Aylen, Technical Services Manager, Junckers

Meet Richard Aylen, our Technical Manager. In a new series of technical articles, Richard will be sharing his expertise and keeping us up to date with all things wood flooring. First up, he explains the new set of guidelines set by the ESFA, The Education and Skills Funding Agency, crucial knowledge for architects, specifiers and contractors involved in building and refurbishing schools.

For schools and education facilities, there are usually three overwhelmingly important factors to consider when it comes to flooring: performance, longevity and cost. This is true for sports floors as well as for floors throughout a school, and a balance between those three factors is of crucial consideration to specifiers. If a school or education facility is applying for funding to upgrade or build new facilities, there is a new set of guidelines to follow as part of the specification process. Familiarising yourself with these new guidelines means you are well equipped to advise clients in the education sector on how best to secure funding, and crucially, end up with a high quality, high performing floor.

The Education and Skills Funding Agency, (ESFA), is an executive agency sponsored by the Department for Education. It is responsible for £58m of funding for the education and training sector, a proportion of which is dedicated to improving sports and activity facilities. To ensure public funds are properly spent, deliver both value for money and safe, high performing sports flooring, the ESFA has recently changed its design standards and of particular interest here is how their changes relate to floors for sports and multi-purpose halls.

Prior to the current phase of education spending any activity or sports hall in a school had to have a point elastic “P3” rating under EN 14904. However, the ESFA now requires Area Elastic category A3 or A4 systems. Also, the types of school hall have been more clearly defined and there are new rules relating to retractable seating.

Point Elastic P3 floors, though of low initial cost, have been deemed to be lacking in performance and safety. The softer surface can tend to “lock” the foot in place, which may result in tendon strains. The harder surface of most area elastic floors offers a “controlled slide” which allows the user to stop, but not so abruptly that the body is over-stressed. There has also been some dissatisfaction from wheelchair athletes about the higher rolling resistance of point elastic floor surfaces compared with the harder top surface provided by area elastic floors.

Area Elastic systems offer the best in terms of safety, longevity, performance and cost. They will typically have a “sprung” undercarriage of some kind with either a synthetic, engineered wood or solid hardwood playing surface.

An area elastic floor has high levels of shock absorption and vertical deformation making it a safe surface for sports, PE, dance, performance and multi-use, allowing freedom of movement and protection from injury. Users of the floor can perform at their best as they will have good ball control and consistent ball bounce. The correct friction rating allows players to move rapidly over the floor and reduces the risk of falls and strains. A floor with a timber surface is able to withstand rolling loads such as trolleys and retractable seating or if the floor is to be used for performances or exhibitions.

Junckers Sports Flooring at Kirkmichael Primary School photo Andrew Lee
Junckers solid wood sports flooring at Kirkmichael Primary School Photo: Andrew Lee

The ESFA requires the main halls in all secondary schools with 900 or more students to have retractable seating. Solid hardwood floors are very suitable for this however careful choice may be needed with other surfaces in order to avoid permanent indentation, rucking, delamination and permanent wheel “tracking” marks. Retractable seating systems create the possibility to host revenue-generating events and functions.

For many clients a solid hardwood floor offers the best in terms of performance, longevity, exceptionally low life cycle costs and ease of maintenance. Solid hardwood is one of the most durable surfaces available and with a typical lifespan of 60 years, it is virtually unbeatable in terms of lifecycle costs.

Whilst not a stated ESFA requirement, this choice also offers the opportunity to have a floor that is very environmentally friendly, recyclable, low carbon and makes little use of resins, adhesives and plastics. Increasingly, the final choice will often be made with some consideration as to how easily the old floor can be recycled or disposed of at the end of its life.

When it comes to maintenance, every type of floor finish suffers wear and tear and occasional damage. The specifier is faced with the choice either to specify a floor which can be refurbished or one that must be replaced when it is worn. Solid hardwood floors will often need to be refurbished by sanding and sealing after 15 years or so, which is very similar to the service life of a synthetic or engineered floor. Manufacturers will often help designers with life cycle cost information and weighing up initial cost against the cost of maintaining the floor through its life. The differences between one type of product and another can be considerable.

For more information please contact Richard RIS@junckers.com

Junckers solid hardwood floor at Harraby Community Campus mid cropped
Junckers solid wood flooring at Harraby Community Campus

Award-winning contemporary building features Junckers solid oak flooring

We are very proud to have supplied our solid timber floors to this amazing project which recently won a Wood Award, the Education and Public Sector 2018 category and was also shortlisted for the prestigious RIBA Stirling Prize 2018.

The Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre by Níall McLaughlin Architects is a graceful addition to the listed parkland at Worcester College, Oxford. The striking contemporary building houses new conference and events facilities. With a high-end finish throughout, the building houses a large lecture theatre and dance studio fitted with Junckers Oak Boulevard flooring. With a plank width of 185mm, Oak Boulevard is our widest dimension board, an elegant and durable option for a public building.

The flooring contractor was Capital Floors Ltd.

Níall McLaughlin Architects

The Wood Awards 2018

RIBA Stirling Prize 2018

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Junckers Oak Boulevard flooring at Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre, Worcester College, Oxford (lecture theatre) Photo: Nick Kane
Junckers wide board Oak, dance studio, Nazrin Shah Centre, Worcester College, Oxford low res
Junckers Oak Boulevard flooring at Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre, Worcester College, Oxford (dance studio) Photo: Nick Kane
Nazrin Shah Centre, Worcester College, Oxford low res
Junckers Oak Boulevard flooring at Sultan Nazrin Shah Centre, Worcester College, Oxford (exterior) Photo: Nick Kane

New from Junckers: A Vinyl Sports Floor with Sprung Undercarriage System

When Bradford Academy needed a replacement for its sports hall floor they looked for guidance from Junckers. By going to the leading sports and dance floor systems manufacturer the academy knew that they would receive the right kind of advice and guidance to help them to steer their way through the overwhelming number of sports floor systems available on the market.

We worked in close partnership with the client, main contractor BAM and our local  Approved Contractor Harmony Contract Flooring, to deliver the floor completed and on time. The client wanted a sprung floor which looked good and was easy to look after, and it needed to meet the performance standards for multi-purpose sports; EN 14904. The floor system selected meets category A4 standard, which means that the academy now has a floor which is recommended by Sport England and the Education and Skills Funding Agency (EFSA).

The site constraints required a floor system with minimum construction height and Junckers’ EliteFlex 49 system, at only 49mm high was found to be ideal. The system is made from laminated foam-backed battens and 22mm timber deck with the 4mm vinyl layer bonded and welded on top. This provides a sports floor suitable for a range of activities from general education use through to elite levels of sport, dance and the like.

Over the many decades since our company was founded, we have dedicated a significant amount of resource to developing the best sprung sports floor systems on the market. This, and our “cradle to grave” technical and customer support and maintenance programmes sets us apart from other manufacturers, where the choice is often limited to a basic undercarriage system and various options for gluing a vinyl sheet to screed, an option which is no longer accepted by the ESFA as a suitable surface for sports.

In the UK, Junckers has become a by-word for high quality sports and activity floor systems, and for providing the technical and customer support needed to make every new Junckers floor one that the installer and client will be proud of. As part of continuous work to develop new products and constantly improve the ability to offer customers a broader choice of floor systems, we have developed a range of vinyl sports and activity floors, based upon the established success of our undercarriage systems.

One of our main strengths is the variety of undercarriage systems we offers. Not only do these give different sprung performance characteristics with some suited to basketball, others for dance etc., thanks to experience and technical expertise we are also able to take care of the less glamorous aspects of the installation, such as dealing with uneven sub floors or those where there may be drying out problems. Junckers’ floors are all tested and certified to EN 14904, category A3, A4 or C3. In addition, our own
in-house testing and development centre assess the wider aspects of the floor’s performance such as point load bearing ability and lifespan issues such as fatigue testing.

Our new vinyl floor systems are aimed at the education sector, sports halls, leisure centres and dance and fitness centres. When it comes to installation, vinyl floor customers have the same assurances that they currently have with our solid hardwood floors because there is a network of fully trained Junckers Approved Installers on hand to make sure that the floor will be fitted properly.

For more information on our new Vinyl Sports Flooring, please contact our offices tel 01376 534 700 or email sales@junckers.co.uk

Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-2-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
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Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-4-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-6-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-7-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-8-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-9-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-10-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones
Junckers Bradford Academy Jan 2018-11-HighRes
Junckers Vinyl Sports Flooring at Bradford Academy photo: Jake Fitzjones

Junckers New Vinyl Sports Flooring System at Bradford Academy 1-LowRes

PE & Sport Premium For Primary Schools- How Best To Spend It

Junckers at St Marylebone School for Girls midThe Department for Education has released details of the PE and Sport Premium for Primary Schools, how much funding schools receive in the academic year 2017 to 2018 including advice on how to spend it. Most primary schools, including schools maintained by the local authority, academies, free schools, special schools and non-maintained schools, receive funding based on the number of pupils who attend the school. With the second payment due in March or April depending on the type of school, head teachers, heads of department, business managers and bursars are having to make decisions on how best to spend their allocated funding.

The DfE has issued guidelines on how schools have to use the and sport premium stating: “Schools must use the funding to make additional and sustainable improvements to the quality of PE and sport you offer.”  The premium should be used to develop or enhance current facilities to build capacity and capability in the long term. Ofsted will be assessing how schools use the premium and a full breakdown of how the funding was spent must be published. Schools are expected to increase sport engagement and offer a broader range of sports and activities – children and young people aged 5 to 18 should engage in a minimum of 60 minutes of physical activity a day, of which 30 minutes should be in schools. The starting point for good PE and sports provision is providing excellent facilities, starting with good quality, safe sports floor.

Many older activity floors in primary schools may have safety and performance levels which are significantly below what is currently recommended for use in schools. A multi-use sports floor system from Junckers complies with the European EN 14904 standard for both Category A3 and A4 systems, exceeding Sport England’s minimum performance requirement, combining safety with outstanding ball response and ease of installation. A new sports floor may be more of an investment, but when you consider that the lifecycle costs of a Junckers floor are second to none, it soon becomes clear it is money well spent. A Junckers solid hardwood sports floor can be sanded and re-finished eight to ten times during its life therefore a typical lifespan of 60 years will comfortably be exceeded. In the past 12 months, on the recommendation of Sport England, the Education and Skills Funding Agency has changed its specification guideline for Affordable Sports Flooring to include Area Elastic Floors (solid hardwood, fully sprung floors) only, having identified Point Elastic Floors (e.g. vinyl flooring) as inadequate.

Another option to improve existing facilities would be to refurbish the existing sports floor; a relatively quick and easy way to make a big improvement and with new methods available, it is possible to undertake the work during term time. Through Junckers’ network of Approved Maintenance Contractors, a 25-year warranty programme is available, which takes care of all floor maintenance and ensures your sports facility will keep its good looks and superior performance in excess of 60 years. Our sports floors are being put to good use on a daily basis in thousands of schools, a sheer testament to their quality and performance – money well spent!

More information

Junckers

Tel 01376 534 700

email

website

Junckers Launches Vinyl Sports Floor Systems

We are happy to announce we are launching a new range of vinyl sports floor systems to sit alongside our flagship collection of solid hardwood floors.

In the UK, Junckers has become a by-word for high quality sports and activity floor systems, and for providing the technical and customer support needed to make every new Junckers floor one that the installer and client will be proud of. As part of our continuous work to develop new products and constantly improve the ability to offer customers a broader choice of floor systems, we have developed a range of vinyl sports and activity floors, based upon the established success of our undercarriage systems.

We have has made the decision to launch a product range which has traditionally been a competitor for its long-established solid hardwood sports floor range after discovering that the range and types of undercarriage being offered appear so limited, even from the larger players in the market. With an established high-performance product, which fulfils all criteria, we are able to offer clients and developers something that is a step up from sub-flooring systems currently on the market.

For many clients, solid hardwood can be the best option – because of its unbeatable life cycle costs, which is always a high priority for sports halls, better environmental credentials, durability, repairability and versatility, retractable seating etc. But some customers prefer vinyl floors, perhaps based upon their past experience, and because they are used to it they feel more comfortable sticking with it. From autumn 2017, we are offering our customers a choice with the launch of our new vinyl sports floor systems.

The EFA (Education Funding Agency) who is responsible for setting the design standards for all school construction in England and Wales, has moved away from accepting “Point Elastic” vinyl floor systems so “stuck to screed” vinyl floors are becoming less favourable and are not really the best surface to play sport or dance on. This means that there is a stronger focus upon Area and Combined elastic floors, which usually require a “sprung” undercarriage, needing a little more expertise to design, manufacture and install. This is not always an area where existing vinyl floor system suppliers excel, but design and manufacture of sports undercarriages has been in our DNA for decades. Being able to combine some of the best undercarriage systems currently available with a vinyl finish means we are able to offer a product which is far superior to vinyl glued to screed.

One of our main strengths is the variety of undercarriage systems we offer. Not only do these give different “sprung” performance characteristics with some suited to basketball, others for dance etc., thanks to experience and technical expertise we are also able to take care of the less glamorous aspects of the installation, such as dealing with uneven sub floors or those where there may be drying out problems. Junckers’ floors are all tested and certified to EN 14904, category A3, A4 or C3. In addition, our own in-house testing and development centre assess the wider aspects of the floor’s performance such as point load bearing ability and lifespan issues such as fatigue testing.

Our new vinyl floor systems are aimed at the education sector, sports halls, leisure centres and dance and fitness centres. When it comes to installation, vinyl floor customers have the same assurances that they currently have with Junckers solid hardwood floors because there is a network of fully trained Junckers Approved Installers on hand to make sure that the floor will be fitted properly.

For more information on our new Vinyl Sports Floor Systems, please contact sales@junckers.co.uk or telephone +44 (0)1376 534 700

Junckers Vinyl Sports Floor System 1 mid
Junckers New Vinyl Sports Floor Systems
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Junckers New Vinyl Sports Floor Systems
Junckers Vinyl Sports Floor System 3
Junckers New Vinyl Sports Floor Systems

 

Solid Oak Floor for Award Winning College Campus

Riverside Campus at City of Glasgow College has won a multitude of architectural awards for its outstanding design. Home to the world-leading Maritime College, the new building features a grand atrium where Junckers 22mm Oak Harmony finished in Ultramatt lacquer was specified for the expansive staircase and walkway.

Designed in a joint venture between Reiach and Hall Architects and Michael Laird Architects, the building is BREEAM ‘Excellent’ with many innovative on-site energy generation measures. Junckers solid hardwood flooring is made from renewable, sustainable forests and the entire manufacturing process is powered by Junckers’ own on-site power plant, which uses the residual wood of the forested timber. The Oak Harmony floor adds natural warmth to the large, open space and provides a hardwearing surface for a busy college environment. The flooring contractor was McKay Flooring.

Junckers floor at Riverside Campus, City of Glasgow College (1)
Junckers 22mm Oak Harmony flooring at Riverside Campus, City of Glasgow College Photo: Keith Hunter Photography
Junckers floor at Riverside Campus, City of Glasgow College (3)
Junckers 22mm Oak Harmony flooring at Riverside Campus, City of Glasgow College Photo: Keith Hunter Photography
Junckers floor at Riverside Campus, City of Glasgow College 2)
Junckers 22mm Oak Harmony flooring at Riverside Campus, City of Glasgow College Photo: Keith Hunter Photography

Junckers Wins Installation of the Year

We are absolutely delighted to be the proud winners of the CFJ/ CFA Installation of the Year Award 2017. The project, Prince Edward Hall, University of Hertfordshire which includes flooring as well as wall and ceilings covered in our solid Beech, was installed by our Approved Contractor PICA Floorings, to exacting standards.

We are honoured to receive this prestigious industry award and would like to thank the CFJ/CFA judging panel and PICA Floorings, whose expertise and professionalism installing our solid hardwood floors made this exceptional project such a success.

Over 1100m2 of Junckers timber was fitted in the newly built campus reception, learning zone and café area. The extended and re-modelled scheme takes the form of a ‘granite box’, which appears to be inserted into the existing building structure on a juxtaposing plane. Drawing on current design principles for creating new work spaces, the new addition to the university incorporates plenty of collaborative work spaces as well as informal areas to offer a range of options for when, where and how to work and relax. The interior design scheme plays an important part, using a mix of materials, where the natural feel of solid wood takes centre stage.

The interior is lined with our Beech Harmony on the floor while Beech SylvaKet clads the ceiling and the walls. The solid wood provides durable and easy to maintain surfaces which are ideal for high-traffic areas. The two types of wood add natural warmth and texture to the open plan spaces and complement each other beautifully. Beech is a light coloured timber with a golden grain pattern also present in Beech SylvaKet, which has been vacuum fumed for a darker, honey coloured appearance. Both can be sanded and refinished without loss of colour. As a natural, living material, solid wood creates an ideal indoor climate, naturally retaining heat, maintaining an even temperature and balanced humidity levels.

Flooring contractor: PICA Floorings Ltd

 

For more information, please contact us on tel 01376 534 700 or by email enquiries@junckers.co.uk

http://www.pica-floorings.co.uk/

http://www.herts.ac.uk

All photography Jake Fitzjones

 

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Junckers solid beech, Prince Edward Hall, Hertfordshire University. Photo: Jake Fitzjones
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Junckers solid beech, Prince Edward Hall, Hertfordshire University. Photo: Jake Fitzjones
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Junckers solid beech, Prince Edward Hall, Hertfordshire University. Photo: Jake Fitzjones
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Junckers solid beech, Prince Edward Hall, Hertfordshire University. Photo: Jake Fitzjones
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Junckers solid beech, Prince Edward Hall, Hertfordshire University. Photo: Jake Fitzjones
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Junckers solid beech, Prince Edward Hall, Hertfordshire University. Photo: Jake Fitzjones