Hunter Douglas Blinds (UK) Limited have recently added the finishing touches to the shading of a bespoke rooflight area at the recent rebuild and refurbishment project at Oasis Academy Coulsdon. The finish to the Agora roof section has made a stunning impact on the concourse, auditorium and rest areas that sit below.
Working closely with architects Sheppard Robson and the main contractor Willmott Dixon, Hunter Douglas supplied 6 x 1800 fabric tension rooflight blinds that spanned the entire width of the roof light space. Each blind was cut to a 3.2 metre width and tapered to 1.6metres that gave each blind the appearance of a sail. Each blind was staggered alternatively at each end of the roof space, left to right and right to left to create a unique feature to the rooflight rather than the appearance of a blackout or solar shading solution.
An added feature of the blinds that helped Hunter Douglas win this contract was the non-standard 13 metre span of the blinds. The architect requested that the overall width of the blind should span the entire area but that the throw of the blind and fabric should finish at 10 metre lengths. Hunter Douglas achieved this by using steel guide wires, that extended over the full 13 metre span. These were attached to steel roller bars positioned at each end of the roof space and fixed to the building’s roof girders with special fixings and safety cradles designed by Hunter Douglas. The steel wire also added the tension required to the blinds during the automated opening and closing process.
The fabric used on these blinds is more commonly used for external applications, but was specified for this project for its tight and significant dimension stability. The fabric combines strength, thinness and lightweight and is available in a wide range of finishes including a textile that changes colour depending on the viewing angle.