Fire Detection from Notifier installed in converted castle for money.co.uk
money.co.uk recently completed a £3m renovation project to transform a Grade II listed castle into the ultimate high-tech workplace. To keep employees and visitors safe, innovative fire detection technology from Notifier by Honeywell has been installed throughout.
A Star Wars themed cinema, a library that has a secret passage in the bookcase, Rolling Stones themed bathrooms and TVs and Apple iPads in every room are just some of the impressive features of money.co.uk’s new headquarters. Located in a 10,000ft² Grade II listed Victorian castle on the Bathurst Estate in Cirencester, the distinctive building provides a unique workplace setting and the interior, designed by Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, reflects the eccentricity of the exterior.
Pushing the boundaries
While it is the style of the workspace that has grabbed all the headlines, the building services infrastructure is also of the highest quality. Life safety is considered paramount and Bristol based APE Fire & Security was asked by the main contractor for the project – Interaction – to design, specify, install and commission a fire detection system that could offer staff and visitors the highest level of protection.
‘Trading for over 30 years, our business is well-established and boasts a wealth of experience and expertise’ comments Peter Leonard, Director at APE Fire & Security. ‘We knew from the outset that this was going to be a challenging and interesting project to work on and would require an innovative solution. Having worked closely with Notifier by Honeywell for many years, we recommended using a Notifier system throughout, which would be based around its pioneering Pearl intelligent addressable control panel.’
The advanced Pearl design offers best in class performance, scalability and functionality. The networkable fire detection control panel is available in one or two loop models and has been specifically created to be immune from the threat of unwanted alarms.
Linked to the Pearl control panels are Notifier’s Opal photoelectric smoke detectors. With a cutting edge chamber design, Opal optical smoke detectors deliver excellent responsiveness and reduce sensitivity changes caused by settling dust. In the kitchen areas, SMART3 detectors are used, which utilise optical smoke sensing in conjunction with heat sensors, infrared flame sensing technology and sophisticated alarm algorithms to offer a fast response to flaming fires while providing superior unwanted alarm immunity.
Features and benefits
Via some very clever cause and effect programming, APE Fire & Security was able to integrate the Pearl control panel with the existing intruder and access control system.
Asked why this was considered important, Peter Leonard replies, ‘For a building like this it is vital to maintain its fire safety and intrusion integrity, and that means making sure that doors and access points are closed when they should be. Now, if doors are propped open, certain areas are alerted through the fire detection sounders using an alternative tone, which is programmed through the Pearl panel. Occupants can then take action.’
As the building was fully refurbished, the fire detection installation had to take place while people were working and, therefore, two loops were employed with 318 addresses on each loop. ‘This meant that people didn’t need to vacate the building, as we could do the work in two phases and always have one loop in operation. It also meant that we could locate the main panel in the entrance foyer and have active repeater in rear door, in order to maximise the effectiveness of the system,’ states Leonard.
The project has been a complete success and has received plaudits for its unique take on a contemporary workspace. Joe Francis, Head of SEO at money.co.uk, concludes, ‘While it’s the style and décor of the castle that catches the eye, we also value the technology that is in place to protect us. By using Notifier’s products, APE Fire & Security has complemented the aesthetics of the building with devices that are reliable and provide the earliest warning of the broadest range of fire conditions.’