Rhyddings School (part of the LET Education Trust) – Case Study
Rhyddings School, part of the LET Lancashire Education Trust, had a requirement to update their indoor sports flooring within their school sports facility.
The old surface was years old, and the age was certainly showing. For example, seam lines were opening up, and inconsistent application of the original adhesive had caused the surface to delaminate. Rips across the surface as well as along the seams were visible. The sports court markings had also worn, but worst of all, the surface regularity was way below the required standards. TVS Group were brought in to replace the flooring, breathing fresh life into this aged facility.
Based on the age of the schoolchildren, and the sporting requirements identified by the school staff, sports flooring specialists from TVS Group, quickly identified a seamless sports grade polyurethane as the best route forward.
After careful consideration and comprehensive design meetings, a two-tone colour scheme in squirrel grey and sky blue was selected, along with custom graphics to enhance the visual appearance of the floor.
The school wanted to cater for badminton, netball, basketball and volleyball to a good standard, maximising the potential for curriculum delivery, as well as outside lettings for these and other sports.
The first task for TVS Group was to carefully remove and arrange appropriate disposal of the existing worn-out sports flooring. Once removed and the subfloor exposed, TVS Group engaged the services of an independent UKAS accredited sports testing laboratory. Their experts attended the site and conducted thorough testing of the substrate for suitability, giving a clear picture of what needed to be fixed, altered and corrected.
TVS Group then undertook these repairs before starting the installation of a polyurethane sports flooring system. This type of sports flooring system uses 100% recycled elastic layer to provide the crucial shock absorbing base pad of the system, an underlayment which is pre-formed by the manufacturer and quality assessed prior to arriving in the UK. This allows TVS Group to minimise waste and gives old truck and tractor tyres a new lease of life, providing safe sporting areas for education facilities worldwide.
As part of the installation this rubber layer is fully glued down and sealed to ensure longevity of the elastic layer, as well as the perfectly smooth finish to the polyurethane. The polyurethane itself is applied in three phases, each stage inspected and remedied before moving on always to protect the integrity of the finish.
The polyurethane is applied in a single liquid poured layer across the entire surface. This ensures no points of weakness or seams are formed. It also ensures that there are no points where dirt or debris can ingress into the surface, making cleaning and maintenance much easier when compared to other types of sports surfaces.
The other huge positive about using the liquid polyurethane system from a lifetime perspective is repairs. The surface is designed to be robust and it will cater to the day-to-day requirements of a modern-day school sports hall, including non-sporting activities, such as exams, parent teacher evenings and assemblies. However, as with any type of sports floor in a school, accidental damage can and does occur sometimes. With a polyurethane sports surface, any damage can be seamlessly repaired. For example, an affected area can be easily cut out, re-poured, sanded smooth and then refinished.
When it came to the final design of the sports floor, the school chose two contrasting colours to highlight the sporting areas and run-off zones as well as give a neutral background to the extensive customisation works.
The personalised graphics and accompanying logos were all custom produced and hand applied to the surface along with game lines for all of their required sports. These sports court markings are applied using the same formulation of polyurethane as the floor finish, ensuring they last as long as possible before needing to be re-applied. Re-application of line markings and finish are a key consideration to anyone in the process of refurbishment and again this is where the polyurethane shows its suitability for the education sector. The robust nature of the rubber underlay means that as the polyurethane wears to the point of needing refurbishment, a new layer can simply be poured over the surface. From an environmental standpoint this is beneficial as no material needs to be removed and sent to landfill. From an economic perspective this is incredibly beneficial to schools as the material costs are dramatically reduced.
All these points count towards the confidence that TVS Group have in their PU Sport flooring system as a great surfacing solution for all levels of ability within education sector.