Refurb & Developer Update - May 2022

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REFURB & It takes a long time to create perfection.



It takes a long time to create perfection. Once in a while a product comes along and changes everything, from the way it’s crafted to the way it works. Products are often copied and many are great ideas that never really see true success in their application. Many years are spent searching for a product that will ultimately surpass expectations, stand the test of time and become recognised as the leader in its field. We created one of those successful products nearly two decades ago and still today it has never been equalled. Why? Because we have never compromised on quality.

UNIFOLD® Unrivalled excellence in gutter lining technology.

TRAINING BY The following series of photographs show a before and after of a Unifold installation. The final result I am sure anyone who has seen gutter installations before would agree, I hope, that it looks good, well not just good, but very good.


This is a high quality installation and it did not happen by accident! As a Company policy we decided quite some time ago not to ”just supply a consignment” and expect those on site who have never installed Unifold before, to get on with it! In fact we would never supply to anyone unless our training programme had first been completed to our satisfaction. This particular Unifold liner was installed by one of our approved contractors and their site operatives have been trained to install the system at our factory facility. Following training this quality level is what we have come to expect from our installers. We, like many system suppliers within our industry, provide a comprehensive training programme, f ree of charge, to potential installers of our Unifold Gutter System. Only in this way can we provide a constant net result on every occasion and support our 30 year guarantee which includes the installation as well as quality of the materials and manufacture. Apart from teaching the techniques involved with installation and site joint manufacture we feel it is important that there is an understanding of the technology behind the system and why the product, correctly installed, will out-perform any other, whilst at the same time providing an installation that the installers can be justifiably proud. The process involves practical training and a theory presentation followed by a multi-choice information test and this, when successfully completed, Candidates are awarded a numbered installers’ card with photographic identification. We have found it most beneficial for Business owners and Contracts Managers as well as site operatives to attend the course as there is more to learn other than just the installation practices.

After Unifold installation


After Unifold installation

CONTENTS 6 Refurb & Developer Update - May 2022


Industry News


Biophilic Design




Home Design

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Contact Us Publication Manager Advertising Sales Exec Editor

Jake Page Emily Maclean Sam Andrews 01843 580460 01843 580460 01843 580460

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04 Flooring

POWDERTECH ‘AGED METAL’ FINISHES FOR AN ARTISTICALLY INSPIRED RESTORATION PROJECT The innovative Aged Metal (Evolution™) range of coatings from Powdertech Corby is fascinating in that it can look both contemporary, meeting the current trend for realistic metal patination or an industrial look, as well as being highly appropriate for the restoration of a 13th century Abbey.

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ona Abbey on the beautiful Hebridean island of Iona has a long history of welcoming guests and has been refurbished with a view to extending its hospitality into the winter months with improved heating, insulation and facilities to suit people with disabilities. This is a £3.5m project funded largely by donations f rom across the world to The Iona Community. Following an artistic tradition The Abbey has an artistic heritage as well as a religious one and houses Scotland’s finest collection of early medieval carved stones and crosses. Colin McNeish of WHAM Architecture has reflected this tradition by using the symbol of wild geese which form part of the Iona Community’s logo as inspiration for canopies over the entrance to the refectory, combining an artistic influence with the functional aspects of refurbishment. The architectural metalwork was constructed by Metalwork UK, specialists in structural steel and heritage projects, and an authentically aged yet welcoming appearance in both colour and texture was the design vision for this part of the restorative work. The best metals and coatings for an island environment The original concept for the canopies and the mezzanine inf ills was to use Corten steel and Corten steel mesh. However, Metalwork UK advised that in an external environment, rainwater could cause run off and staining f rom Corten. An alternative solution was sought, and one which needed to recognise the marine environment within which the Abbey is situated, and the need for protection against corrosion and wind-born particle abrasion.

together with Metalwork UK contacted Powdertech to discuss a high-performance coating which would give a rusted look. Powdertech supplied a range of samples from its Aged Metal ‘Rust’ collection and ‘Diamond Mine’ was chosen, reflecting the natural rusting of steel with texture and sparkle whilst providing high performance corrosion protection. “Diamond Mine’ could be used on both types of steel and produce the same effect. Design for full protection For the pre-treatment and powder coating process to fully protect the structures, particular

design aspects are always critical, including the need to eliminate any sharp edges and water traps and to ensure that jigging points are correctly positioned. The mild and galvanized steel components were primed with a zinc-rich primer before coating to give added protection. The high-performance weather resistance afforded by the Evolution finish will protect the underlying metal for twenty-five years or more. For more details on Powdertech’s coatings visit

Mild steel was the favoured option for the interior metalwork and galvanized steel for the external canopies. Perforated steel manufacturers, RMIG,

06 Biophilic Design


ell, this particular style dates b a c k as far as 1984, when the concept was introduced by E.O. Wilson through his book Biophilia. And it has many benef its to our well-being, too, through simple additions of nature. So, with this in mind, it is undoubtedly here to stay. But what really is biophilic design? It’s simpler than you think – here, we explore the concept and how to incorporate it into your space.

Defining biophilic design Generally, this style of design highlights the human connection between nature and the environment. Meeting the requirements to class your design as biophilic includes the implementation of natural materials, like plants and wood. It’s as simple as focusing on the natural world to enhance your space – and this can count for your home, garden, or even your office. It’s predicted that 66% of the world’s population will live in an urban environment by 2050, and already people spend 93% of their time indoors, away f rom nature. By doing so, our full potential isn’t unlocked, as keeping in touch with nature impact our physical and mental well-being. So, there is a need to meet somewhere in the middle, which is feasible with biophilic design.

WHAT IS BIOPHILIC DESIGN AND WHY IS IT TRENDING FOR 2022? Biophilic design is shaping up to be a major trend for 2022. Of course, trends come and go, so we can often be sceptical when it comes to implementing design trends inside our homes. Is it worth investing in? The benefits – besides the aesthetic Air quality is one of the many benef its of biophilic design. With your designated space consisting of plants, they will use carbon dioxide to produce oxygen, as well as when the leaves essentially ‘sweat’ out water, which combats the problem of dry air by making it more humid. And not only is this an advantage for your home, but as dry air is a widely reported issue in air-conditioned off ices, biophilic design helps tackle this issue. Creativity and productivity can be b o o s te d by a d d i n g houseplants to your space. Research in offices was carried out in the UK, Netherlands, and Australia by Craig Knight and fellow psychologists who discovered that work performance increased by approximately 15%

when the space featured one plant per square metre. This is ideal for workspaces, whether that’s for those who work f rom home or in an off ice. Research in off ices was carried out in the UK, Netherlands, and Australia discovered that work performance increased by approximately 15% when the space featured one plant per square metre. Stress is the cause of many mental health illnesses as well as cardiovascular diseases, but biophilic design can act as a stress-reliever. Research has reflected that interacting with plants, like touching or even smelling, can reduce physiological and psychological stress. And soil contains microbes, informally referred to as ‘outdoorphins’, which are natural antidepressants and aid the production of serotonin.

Biophilic Design 07 Incorporating biophilic design into your space Both direct and indirect experiences can be possible through the implementation of biophilic design. For a direct experience, plants can be a simple but effective addition. Not only are they a decorative touch in homes, but they can actually allow us to feel happier. And water plays an important part in this design too, so something else to add could be an indoor river. The trickling sound is tranquil enough to relax you in times of need.

Direct experiences can be added to your outdoor space too, such as your garden, by adding more greenery. And you can always add outdoor heaters to ensure that you are absorbing the biophilic design benef its all year round. Plus, there’s the opportunity for water features in your garden, like a pond, and the natural flow of the water will undoubtedly contribute to the calming effect. Indirect experiences can be integrated into your biophilic area if direct elements are not desired or if you have f illed your space up to the maximum

with plants. Smells are a perfect way to add this style to your space indirectly, perhaps candles of a natural woody scent. Alternatively, opt for an earth-tone colour scheme to implement a biophilic design into your space subtly. The chosen design for your space can often be a big commitment. But, with biophilic design, it only takes some simple additions to brighten up your space while also improving your wellbeing - and it doesn’t require many drastic changes. Would you consider biophilic design for your space?

09 Biophilic Design Rising from the landscape


Denmarsh Photography courtesy of the Phipps Center for Sustainable Landscapes


Part of the greater Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the Center for Sustainable Landscapes was built to further the Conservatory’s mission: to advance sustainability and promote human and environmental well-being through action and research. The Center serves as an educational and research facility and welcomes close to 450,000 visitors each year.


he steeply sloped brownf ield site posed a major design challenge. Through an integrated design process that included bimonthly day-long charrettes, the project team, which included the project owners, focused on creating a structure that enhances its surroundings and always maintains a connection to the outdoors. This was accomplished by nestling the three-story

building into the slope and orienting its east-west axis toward the southwest. A major goal was to carry over the experiential theme of the Conservatory and to connect the upper campus to this new site below. The team achieved this connection by designing terraced gardens and a winding footpath that leads from the roof down to the ground floor, inviting visitors to enter and exit the building at all three levels.

Incorporating over 150 native plants grouped into natural communities, the terraced gardens surround the building, even extending onto it with a green roof. The design creates outdoor rooms that blur the edges between building and landscape. The experience carries over inside the building, where the many windows provide intimate views of the gardens and live plants grace the offices, conference room, and lobby. GEOLOGY AND LANDSCAPE The backdrop for this project is a dramatically sloping hillside. The Center, set into this bluff, becomes part of the geology. The gardens surrounding the building unfold in a series of planted areas that mimic the region’s varied landscapes. As visitors approach the building f rom the upper campus and

Biophilic Design 09 meander down the path toward the ground floor, the plantings, building, and topography work together to create naturalseeming transitions between outside and inside. Visitors pass by upland species at the roof level and through oak woodlands on the path, f inally reaching wetlands and raingardens at the bottom of the slope. VIEWS AND VISTAS To be in the Center is to be simultaneously outside. Every place in the building, including the classroom, conference room, offices, and three levels of the lobby provides distinctive perspectives and views: to the south and west, the expansive vista overlooking Panther Hollow and Junction Hollow; to the east, intimate views of the gardens; and to the north, views of the dramatic topography from which the building itself emerges. NATURAL PATTERNS AND PROCESSES SENSORY VARIABILITY This building takes advantage of its immersion in a botanical landscape, building on the dynamic variety of colors, textures, and shapes of the plants to bring an ever-changing visual and auditory experience to occupants. Recognizing the importance of sound to connect people to nature, Abby Arresty’s audial

sculpture brings the sounds of Pittsburgh—from the rhythmic whir of cicadas to the gentle patter of rain to the nostalgic whistle of a passing train—into the space, while interactive and three-dimensional art throughout the building stimulates eyes and minds. All of this sensory variability invites people to pause, touch, look, and listen—to connect with nature, but also with themselves. CENTRAL FOCAL POINT The Center is organized around a central lobby with an atrium, a feature that highlights the dramatic elevation change that characterizes the site. The threestory atrium anchors the building, serving as a guidepost for people whether they are inside or outside. Visitors who take the meandering path through the gardens can refer to this prominent feature— the translucent tower with its distinctive pitched roof is the highest point on the building—to stay oriented as they transition f rom the amphitheater down to the lagoon. Inside, the lobby and atrium orient people within the building and connect them to other spaces; from here, it is possible to see clear through the building from east to west. People are drawn to this lightf illed public space, where sunlight, access to views, and art reinforce the atrium’s function as the central focal point.

INFORMATION RICHNESS Inside the building, light, art, and sound combine to create a multilayered experience. Art installations inspired by nature enrich the interior and invite staff and visitors alike to pause. Glass sculptures that evoke colorful flowers bloom along one wall. A bronze windbell at the entry to the rooftop garden captures the movement of air in its clear, resonant tones. A suspended steel sculpture of curving steel bands draws attention with its contrasts of light and dark, solidity and air. The interplay of light drawn through the light shelves and atrium windows lifts the spirit. And the sound sculpture, filling the lobby with the sounds of insects, frogs, rain, and birdsong, echoes the season, weather, and time of day. Such richness not only stimulates the senses, but connects people with their emotions and memories. BUILT EXPERIENCE LESSONS LEARNED The Center for Sustainable Landscapes serves as a respite for urban dwellers. Visitors approach the building from the upper campus above the site, meandering through terraced gardens that seem to embrace the building. Inside, an open, light-f illed atrium facilitates airflow and helps visitors stay attuned to the outside, as sounds reflecting the weather, season, and time of day filter through the space. The art installations help create a richly layered experience, connecting visitors with the region’s ecology and history. Staff and visitors alike are invited to thread a length of yarn through the Skywatcher Loom and gaze up toward the sky, taking a moment to enjoy the tactile experience and build upon the work of others. In the light-filled lobby, access to the sky lifts the spirit, even on a dreary winter’s day, and in the open offices, employees enjoy the many plants, abundant natural light, and fresh air.

Denmarsh Photography courtesy of the Phipps Center for Sustainable Landscapes

10 Biophilic Design


he fastex p a n d i n g business is c u r r e n t l y recruiting for Maintenance Supervisors and Horticultural Support Technicians with a passion for plants and a desire to join a sustainable company. New starters will be working on prestigious living walls predominantly in London and around the UK.

LIVING WALL FIRM RECRUITING PEOPLE INTERESTED IN CREATING A GREENER WORLD Biotecture, a leader in UK living wall design, installation and maintenance has this week announced a major recruitment drive to expand its professional maintenance team.

Hiring for the new roles is already underway and interested candidates can visit to find out more and apply. Biotecture are part of the Mitie Group the UK’s leading facilities management and professional services company, so new starters will benefit from being part of a larger organisation as well as part of our close-knit specialist team. As well as competitive remuneration Mitie offer a great range of benef its including life assurance, vir tual GP service and discounts at hundreds of retail stores and hospitality venues. The latest recruitment drive follows several major project wins for Biotecture in the commercial and retail sectors, both for new living walls and ongoing maintenance programmes. Biotecture’s management team report that demand is now so great for its living wall systems that it expects to be recruiting for even more staff across the UK over the next few months. For 15 years, Biotecture living walls have been transforming indoor and outdoor urban spaces by improving air quality and biodiversity, while e n h a n c i n g wo rks p a ce design. Richard Sabin, Managing Director at Biotecture,

comments: “It’s been a really exciting few months since we joined Mitie and already the benefits of being part of a larger facilities management company are beginning to show for us and our customers. We have sustained our business expansion and are now recruiting talented individuals who are looking to make the world a greener place.” He added: “We are proud to offer opportunities for people f rom a wide range of backgrounds and will provide comprehensive training. People are the heart of our company, and our aim is to establish Biotecture as the partner of choice for

green-minded customers and employees. As one of the UK’s leading living wall companies, we can offer an incredibly wide array of exciting projects and opportunities.” Biotecture’s clients include JC Decaux, Grosvenor Estates, MTV Viacom, Network Rail, Canary Wharf Group, The Crown Estate and Land Securities. To f ind out more about these exciting career opportunities at Biotecture, click here. Follow us on LinkedIn to keep up to date with career opportunities as they develop.

12 Industry News

Warwickshire Pub Installs Panasonic nanoeTM X to improve indoor environment


he New Inn Pub in Warwickshire, a community-owned pub datin g ba ck to 1750, needed a new approach to heating and cooling to create a welcoming and pleasant environment for its customers. Panasonic Etherea air conditioning units with nanoeTM X were recommended as the ideal solution by installer Oli Thorndale of Thorndale Heating & Cooling. The residents of the small village in Norton Lindsey, Warwickshire, purchased the pub in 2016, to maintain its key role as the social hub of the village. The villagers clubbed together to raise the £400,000 needed to purchase the property and now 220 shareholders and a steering committee manage the New Inn Pub. When the villagers took over the property, it was very run down and needed a complete renovation throughout, including the heating system which was an old LPG gas-fired boiler. With the price of gas going up and its lessthan environmentally f riendly credentials, gas was considered an expensive and inefficient fuel – in fact, many locals complained the pub was cold in winter and too hot in the summer. As this was 2021 and during the pandemic, COVID was very much at the foref ront of everyone’s minds. With many villagers feeling vulnerable, the steering committee wanted to provide conf idence in the pub, as well as creating a safer and healthier environment. It was at this point that the steering committee

learnt about the benef its of Panasonic’s unique nanoeTM X; a unique technology to improve air hygiene by preventing transmission of airborne pathogens. Through his relationship with air conditioning distributor, Oceanair, village resident Oli Thorndale of Thorndale Heating & Cooling, had already installed Panasonic nanoeTM X Etherea units in his property and was very pleased with the unit’s performance. Oli proposed a similar solution to the steering co m m i tte e fo r t h e p u b, which was quickly approved. Installation of wall-mounted Etherea air conditioner with nanoeTM X built-in as standard now provides not only energyeff icient heating and cooling but can also inhibit the growth of certain bacteria and viruses. Tony Bourne, a member of the steering committee remarked, “It was nanoeTM X and the benefits it brings that was the clinching factor to install Panasonic”. Tony also said, “I had already had the Panasonic nanoeTM X units installed in my own home, as our bedroom was very hot in the summer along with my wife suffering f rom chest problems and hayfever, we have since found that the Panasonic air conditioning unit with nanoeTM X technology has really helped and we both sleep much better now”. “The Pub is a major hub for the local community, so very important to ensure that its accessible and a pleasant place for everyone. The space is now much cosier and warmer with

the new Panasonic units making a significant difference. We have also seen an increase in more of the local residents coming back to the pub, as they feel much more confident now that the nanoeTM X technology is installed.” Oli Thorndale has been involved in the industry for approx. 15 years, starting out in air cleaning and f iltration using electronic statics, which is why Oli quickly understood the benef its of nanoeTM X. Oli has since worked for an air conditioning company installing and maintaining the equipment and then started his own business three years ago – mainly domestic installs with lots of home office cabin style installs in and around Warwickshire – ideal for the Panasonic Etherea energy-eff icient units with nanoeTM X technology. Oli commented, “With the price of gas going up considerably, I am seeing more and more people looking to switch to more renewable sources. It was Tony Holland of Oceanair that f irst came to me with the information on the Panasonic nanoeTM X technology and the independent

Industry News 13

tests regarding the benef its of the technology to inhibit bacteria and viruses such as COVID19. The units have been installed for approx. six months in the pub now – we have had a great reaction, with bills being reduced and the units quickly heating up the space. Following the pub install, local residents have been impressed and are requesting the units to be installed in their homes – the install of the units is very straightforward and made from good quality materials and comes ready to run.” “The support and help f rom both Panasonic and Oceanair has been very good with lots of back-up and information provided to help give people confidence, particularly since the latest independent test results re nanoeTM X inhibiting the COVID virus were recently published and conf irming that is 99.8% effective against the adhered novel coronavirus Delta variant (SARS-CoV-2). “I was particularly impressed with Oceanair as a distributor that helps the smaller installer and provides back-up for small projects – it was them that told me about nanoeTM X, because of my background in electrostatics and how they work I completely understood the technology.” Tony Holland of Oceanair, also working in the industry for 15 years added, “Having worked with Panasonic for at least 10 years now, it is always a pleasure to work with the team. I have

found their products to have come on leaps and bounds, now currently leading the industry by far, especially with nanoeTM X and their Air Source heat pump technology, renewables are the future for this industry. We are seeing a phenomenal take up for these units both in domestic and commercial projects – people want to come back to safe and healthy environments – it’s selling itself, particularly with the latest test results revealing such high results against the virus. At Oceanair we are more than happy to work with smaller projects and installers – we treat all projects and customers with the same full customer support”.

growth of certain viruses, bacteria and allergens. Contained in tiny water particles, nanoe™ X generates particles that have a long lifespan and can spread over long distances.

At Oceanair we are more than happy to work with small installs as well as the larger projects, offering the same respect to the one-man band as we would to the more established engineers, whether the specif ication is one system or one hundred systems – we treat all projects and customers with the same excellent customer support and professionalism”.

For more information on the Panasonic range of heating and cooling solutions, including nanoeTM X technology and the latest independent te s t re s u l t s , p l ea s e v i s i t

The Panasonic air conditioning systems that incorporate the nanoe™ X technology can help bring incredible benef its indoors so that hard surfaces, soft furnishings, and the indoor environment can be a cleaner and more pleasant place to be. nanoe™ X works independently f rom the heating and cooling operation of its units and uses minimal energy and requires no maintenance.

Panasonic has been developing nanoeTM since 2003. The technology is a cost-effective way to improve air hygiene by preventing the transmission of airborne pathogens. The nanoeTM X generator collects invisible moisture in the air and applies a high voltage to generate hydroxyl radicals in water. Hydroxyl radicals, abundant in nature, inhibit the

14 Bathrooms


Traditional bathrooms go back to the golden age of interior decor. They have remained at the forefront of luxury bathroom design for decades. It is easy to understand why. A traditional bathroom is more opulent than a contemporary bathroom and features bold and elaborate touches. Graeme Borchard MD of UK Bathrooms, the UK’s leading online retailer of premium brands, explains what a traditional bathroom is: “traditional bathrooms are timeless and elegant, they will not date or go out of fashion. Full of character, a classic, traditional bathroom pays homage to a historical period, such as Edwardian or Victorian. Clean lines, soothing spaces and a welcoming, charming aesthetic typifies a traditional bathroom. A space that you can enjoy for the years to come.” Is a traditional bathroom right for your home? The Edwardians were some of the first to build homes with the invention of a room dedicated to washing and bathing. These period homes are full of character with high ceilings, large windows, alcoves and original fireplaces. While these original features help form the traditional bathroom look, it is possible to create a traditional bathroom in a contemporary new build or apartment. Start by drawing a layout or diagram of your planned new bathroom, include the position of the bathroom door and any windows or fixed features.

How do you style a period bathroom? When it comes to styling a traditional or period bathroom then allow consideration to the surfaces. Use natural materials such as stone, slate or granite. Choose wall and floor tiling that leans towards a vintage look with subway or hexagonal tiles. Mix and match eras but keep the look clean and simple for a more visual appeal. Use a patterned, statement tile on your floor, such as Origins White Compass Star Pattern Tile to create a unique art deco style. Origins Glazed Long Metro Tiles on your bathroom walls are an iconic yet easy-to-maintain option. Traditional Furniture When choosing furniture again opt for a more natural material. Wood is typically used for period vanity units and a beautiful high-end painted unit will create

an incredible focal point in your room. The iconic Burlington 1340mm Curved 4 Door Vanity Unit will set the scene in your new traditional bathroom. This is a stunning piece of furniture which oozes classical elegance. Choose from Black Granite, Carrara White Marble or White worktop indicative of a bygone era. The vanity unit is available in a choice of four colours with a matt white option that you can customise to co-ordinate your bathroom design. Traditional basin and washstand A beautiful washstand can be a stunning alternative to a vanity unit or basin with a pedestal. The Vitra Valarte Basin and Washstand is a Victorian beauty. Its design embodies the quintessential traditional washroom. The chic sink sits on top of the elegant polished chrome washstand frame.

Bathrooms 15 This has a front towel rail built into the design and a convenient shelf, ideal for storage. Traditional bath If you have space choose a beautiful freestanding bathtub. Nothing says traditional as much as a roll top bath. Victoria and Albert Richmond Freestanding Bath has a timeless art-deco feel. The standard Gloss White finish it is a true statement piece. For an incredible focal point opt for the RAL Colour Service available to choose your own colour. Taps and showers Traditional bathrooms need period styled brassware. Crosswater’ Belgravia Collection is elegant and understated, a perfect pairing to yesteryear and available in a wide range of products. From Bath Pillar Taps to a Cross head Bath Shower Mixer in chrome, nickel or unlacquered brass finish. For an ultra-coordinated look match with Crosswater Belgravia Thermostatic Shower Kit. This shower kit features modern day technology and innovation with a classical look. The valve has two controls and is easy to operate for the whole family. Toilets with tradition Capture the spirit of a bygone age with a traditional toilet. With a plethora of choice available from wall mounted to high level cisterns, the only thing to check is your plumbing requirements. The Burlington Low Level Toilet comes with a choice in position for the pan outlet so check this with your installer first. This period piece also has the option of a ceramic cistern lever or push-button mechanism. Seats are available in rich dark mahogany, warm oak or white. What is the best colour scheme for a traditional bathroom? Adding colour to your traditional bathroom is where you get to use your creative side. Opting for a beautiful botanical wallpaper can make a striking aesthetic to your bathroom. If you have high ceilings and a plethora of natural light choose a bold and bright colour scheme, or opt for a darker colour for a more dramatic impact. Green is a colour renowned for its calming qualities. It exudes a sense of balance and harmony perfect for any bathroom space. Decorate your walls with greeninspired hues such as pale pistachio, mint pastels and soft sage to dark forest tones. Choose panelling to walls, whilst they will need painting, they will look amazing and befitting of your new traditional space. If green isn’t your favourite on the pantone chart, then consider dark blue walls to create an elegant, stylish appeal. An authentic period space with an abundance of original features will allow you to keep your walls and floor neutral and the features to stand out. This will create a charming and welcoming bathroom where you can relax and unwind.

16 Bathrooms

Within the Sussex Range we have our charity rail the Rye, for every Rye sold we make a donation of 20% of our profits to a charity. At present we are supporting Luckys Legacy Rescue an on the ground charity spaying and rescuing dogs and cats in Romania and now Ukraine as well.


he Rye was inspired by the traditional library ladder, it has been designed to offer a gentle and elegant twist on the classic, leaning casually and lightly against the wall taking bathroom elegance and comfort to a new level. With larger than normal bar spacing comes the added advantage of further practicability should you favour more than one bath sheet or within a larger family bathroom. In fact this rail very much marries practicability with the more minimalistic styling favoured within design today, a thoroughly modern classic. The Rye range of towel rails is available in three different heating formats: these being

electric only, dual fuel and the ability to be utilized solely within the central heating system. The rails, as always, are suitable for open plumbing systems. Measuring 1800mm x 520mm – tapering to 300mm at the top, the JIS element is constructed from 100% stainless steel, with a built in thermostat to prevent the rail from becoming too hot and, of course, to reduce running costs. With a BTU rating of 1878, the rail consumes just 550 Watts; while each one is manufactured with standard 1/2” BSP tappings and is pressure tested to 12 Bar. Of fering a choice of either satin or a highly polished steel surface, all Rye towel rails are

hand finished by the company’s craftsmen to ensure the highest quality is maintained; so it is no surprise that JIS is confident enough to of fer it s usual no-quibble 25 year guarantee. The Rye has also been added to the Black edition range and is now also available in a matt black powder coated finish as well. All of the towel rails within the Sussex Range are entirely fabricated from 304 grade stainless steel, of which over 90% is from recycled source and the rail itself is 100% recyclable at the end of its life. There are no environmentally harmful chemical plating processes in the manufacture of stainless steel, the very fact that is is not plated ensures the rails will not rust, flake or corrode and small marks can simply be polished out. This makes them a durable, as well as an attractive, environmentallyfriendly choice. The Sussex Range’s lates t towel rails have a recommended retail price of just £449.50 + VAT. Please visit for further information or contact our friendly staff on 01444 831200.

Black Edition Stainless Steel Towel Rails by JIS Europe 100% stainless steel towel rails 01825 722988

18 Bathrooms

Brentwood Shower Room

Essex, UK

T his project was a top floor flat which consisted of no windows in the bathroom. Built in the 1990’s, the L shaped bathroom previously housed a shower over-bath and built in furniture but the bathroom didn’t flow and the layout wasn’t working for our client. In addition to the no windows, the floor was solid which meant there would be issues with wet room drainage. We first needed to address the layout and make it work for the client’s needs and then move on to make it a beautiful, luxurious space for them to enjoy. The first suggestion was to move the position of the current WC to another wall (always check feasibility with the installer before doing so) where it opened a whole new area which allowed us to create a large walk-in shower measuring approximately 1300mm width x 1800mm depth. Due to the concrete floor, we ended up raising the floor here to allow drainage for the long linear drain at the back end of shower. This ensured all water flowed back to the drain with minimal water in main walkway of the bathroom floor. When it came to design the client was not timid and was completely open to a more intimate ‘boudoir’ feel to the space and his curiosity had been piqued by our waterproof wallpaper – so this was an absolute must have! Designed by Louise Ashdown in our Tunbridge Wells showroom, we suggested to have wallpaper along the main wall which ran around the shower. To compliment the wallpaper we placed polished porcelain marble effect tiling on the remaining wall and floor area. The gold veining adds to the luxury feel and compliments beautifully with the brushed brass f ittings. The faux panelling elevates the space and creates a ‘gentleman’s club’ feel to the space, especially with the addition of the vintage furniture for storage which sits next to our minimalistic basin on brushed a gold stand.

Incorporating a feature mirror and a trio of pendants offsets against the basin, drawing the eye into the room and the floral explosion wallpaper creates intrigue.

20 Case Study

Five household jobs Brits most need help with • reveals almost 70% of Brits ask for help with tasks such as cleaning, electrical work and assembling furniture from family and friends

Over four in 10 (42%) haven’t ever been shown how to do household tasks properly

Nearly one in three (29%) Brits call their spouse first when something goes wrong

With sales in household goods stores across the UK hitting over £34.6 billion, and £7.2 billion in decorating and DIY stores, it’s clear that Brits love to keep their homes in great shape. Whether that’s keeping on top of the cleaning or tackling home improvements. But how many of us feel like we can confidently tackle these tasks ourselves? New research f rom has revealed that almost 70% of Brits ask for help with tasks around the home from friends and family, the main reason being that over four in 10 (42%) simply haven’t ever been shown how to do tasks properly and would need someone to show them before attempting themselves. Almost two-fifths of Brits feel incapable of carrying out household jobs on their own Outside of lacking in capability and expertise, the research uncovers the additional reasons behind the need to call upon family and friends for a helping hand:

Common reasons for asking for help

Percentage of Brits who agree

I haven’t ever been shown how to do the task properly/ I need someone else to show me before I attempt it on my own


I don't feel capable of doing things around the house on my own


I’m worried that I would break something


To save money calling a professional / I don’t have time to spare


Over two-fifths (43%) of those aged 18 -24 claim they feel incapable of tackling household tasks on their own, and the second most common reason being that they haven’t ever been shown how to do tasks properly and would need someone else to show them before attempting themselves (42%).

Nearly one in three (29%) Brits call their spouse first when something goes wrong So, who do we call when there’s a DIY dilemma, a question about cleaning or baffling furniture instructions? Almost a third (29%) are quick to call their other half first when something goes wrong in the home. Interestingly, only one in six (15%) calls a professional first when something goes wrong. Parents are the ones usually called on to help with DIY (24%) and plumbing issues (22%). Meanwhile, a fifth (21%) of respondents agreed that friends and neighbours come in handy for rearranging heavy furniture or appliances. People in Sheffield are most likely to call their mums (25%), whereas it’s dad and their spouses who are on speed dial for those in Birmingham (21%) and Edinburgh (24%). In Belfast, it’s siblings who are most likely to get the call for help (26%). Despite it sometimes being the cheaper option to ask for help from family and friends, there are some tasks best left to the professionals. Almost seven in 10 (62%) are likely to pay a professional to sort home tasks involving electrical work. Brits need the most help with plumbing issues (44%), electrical work (40%), DIY tasks (38%) and painting and decorating (32%) Household tasks such as plumbing issues (44%) and electrical work (40%) unsurprisingly topped the list of those we need help with the most, whereas DIY tasks (38%) were the third most common tasks we ask for help with followed by painting and decorating (32%). Other tasks such as rearranging (29%) and assembling (25%) furniture often require a second pair of hands, so it’s no surprise that Brits call upon someone else to help in this instance. Commenting on the research, Alex Hasty, director at, says: “It’s great to be able to call on our close friends and family to help us with tasks around the home. If you’re putting up a new shelf or redecorating a room there’s no need to tell your insurer, but it’s best to check if you’re covered for accidental damage under your home insurance, just in case. If you’re planning extensive work to your home, then it’s best to talk to your provider first”. To see the full research click here.

22 Home Design

Home Design 23

Why mood-boosting hues are set to reign supreme when it comes to interiors for Spring 2022


ood-boosting hues are having a real moment when it comes to transforming your interiors. From calming blue to sunny yellow, Spring 2022 will introduce some of its dreamiest colours yet when it comes to paint trends. Take Juniper Whorl, for example. This magnif icent fusion of pigments and colours will transform any room into a tranquil haven. The colour blue calls to mind feelings of serenity and peace, making it perfect for those who want to improve their wellbeing at home.

Juniper Whorl Available 1L to 5L £22.50 to £85.50

Evidence has also shown that the colour green has psychological benefits. This new wave of embracing shades of green has come directly from our reinspired love of nature, as more people look to bring the outside in post-lockdown. And of course, there’s nothing more cheerful than golden yellow. All colours are available in Ceramic Matt, Interior Matt and Soft Sheen for walls or Gloss, Satin and Eggshell for woodwork and metal surfaces. Ceramic Matt has added ceramic microsphere technology, making it a washable and highly durable paint. A finish that is perfect for high-traffic places where a matt finish is preferred.

Sweet Caper Available 1L to 5L £22.50 to £85.50

Colourtrend is a leading premium paint brand, available in select stockists across the UK. For more information visit: For product samples or further information please contact:

Furze Lane Available 1L to 5L £22.50 to £85.50

07740 771 109

24 Home Design

Lusso Bentley Flooring – A Cheaper Al ternative to Karndean & Amtico


VT flooring has become a popular choice for UK homeowners. With their realistic wood and stone designs, easy maintenance, and excellent durability, it’s easy to see why they have dramatically risen in popularity in recent years. However, there is one problem that you might face when trying to f ind an LVT floor to complement your living space, and that is the sheer amount of choice available. There are

so many different brands and designs on offer that it can be tough figuring out which one is right for you. The obvious choices are brands like Amtico and Karndean. However, floors offered by these brands tend to be quite expensive. To help make LVT flooring affordable to a wider range of budgets, Leeds based retailer, Stories Flooring, has introduced the Lusso Bentley Portofino collection.

So, what is the new range and how does it compare to the likes of Amtico and Karndean? Read on to discover everything you need to know.

What is the Lusso Bentley Portofino Collection? The Lusso Bentley Portofino LVT collection has been designed exclusively by Stories Flooring. It consists of beautiful, hyperrealistic wood designs that are available at budget-f riendly prices. The range can be installed in commercial and domestic settings, in both click and glue down installation methods for enhanced durability and stability. The range may be new, but it is already making waves in the flooring sector. It is easily comparable to the likes of Amtico and Karndean. Let’s take a look at how it measures up to these leading brands…

Lusso Bentley Vs Karndean LVT When you compare Lusso Bentley to Karndean LVT, the similarities between the two collections are impressive. They offer similar levels of durability, with both collections incorporating a 0.55mm wear layer into their design. This makes them suitable for hightraff ic areas, and ensures they last for many years to come. However, the Lusso Bentley Portof ino collection offers a slightly longer warranty, giving it an edge over its competitor. The Portofino LVT range offers a fantastic lifetime domestic, and a 15-year commercial guarantee. The quality and design of the floors in either range are

Home Design 25 comparable. The Lusso Bentley Portof ino range has been developed using the latest ecof riendly processes and there are a lot of beautiful woodeffect designs to choose from. Karndean LVT and Lusso Bentley LVT floors come with a hyperrealistic surface. This helps to provide a realistic wood effect while benef itting f rom the practical benefits of LVT. Another similarity is their water resistant design. This lets you install them in any room of the house without worrying about water damage like you would with a solid wood floor. The biggest difference between Lusso Bentley and Karndean LVT is the price. The cheapest Karndean LVT floors are offered at £46.99 per square metre. The Lusso Bentley Portofino range on the other hand starts from £33.98 per square metre. It is also frequently on offer at up to 50% off, enabling customers to snag these floors for just £16.99 per square metre. That is a drastic difference in cost!

Lusso Bentley Vs Amtico LVT The Amtico Spacia LVT range is also extremely similar to the Lusso Bentley Portofino range. Like Karndean and Lusso Bentley floors, the Amtico Spacia range features a 0.55mm wear layer. This makes them all comparable in terms of durability. However, again the Lusso Bentley range comes out on top, offering a lifetime guarantee and 15-year residential warranty. Th e

Amtico range offers a 25-year domestic warranty, and a 10-year commercial warranty in comparison. Lusso Bentley, Karndean, and Amtico all come in a gluedown installation method. This helps to provide the most stable and durable fit. Amtico floors are also water resistant, allowing them to be installed anywhere in the home. So, in terms of design, d u ra b i l i ty, q u a l i ty, a n d installation, there is virtually no difference, other than Lusso Bentley’s longer guarantee. It is the price that once again sets these floors apart. Amtico Spacia floors typically retail for £42.99 per square metre, though some go up as much as £72.99 per square metre. This means that Lusso Bentley floors are a lot more affordable.

Conclusion To sum up, Lusso Bentley LVT is an exceptional range of highquality realistic wood effect flooring. It stands up well against leading brands such as Amtico and Karndean. The key features of these stunning floors include: •

A 0.55mm wear layer for incredible durability

Resistant to water

Available in striking real-wood effects

Gluedown installation versions

Click installation versions

Underfloor heating compatibility

Offered at just a fraction of the cost of leading brands, you can browse the full Lusso Bentley Portofino range at Stories Flooring today.

26 Home Design

KAZUHIDE TAKAHAMA, THE JAPANESE DESIGNER WHO FUSED ZEN MINIMALISM WITH ART His masterfully pared-down furniture designs borrowed concepts from Surrealism and the Dada movement

Above: Kazuhide Takahama Left: Paradisoterrestre Below: ‘Antella’ console and ‘Gaja’ chair by Kazuhide Takahama for Cassina De Pasquale & Maffini

With their spare simplicity, the designs of Kazuhide Takahama (1930-2010) appear perfectly in tune with the Japanese philosophy of Zen minimalism. They’re also a reflection of the designer himself, so quietly charismatic that he was known as ‘the stone man’. Yet Takahama’s work was far from being purely Japanese: he embraced a variety of Western influences, including modern European art. Born in Miyazaki on the Japanese island of Kyushu, Takahama studied architecture at the Tokyo Institute of Technology before joining the practice of architect Kazuo Fujioka. In 1957, he oversaw the design of Japan’s first pavilion at the Milan Triennale, which proved to be a life-changing event – he met the entrepreneur Dino Gavina, founder of Simon International (now part of Cassina), and began a lifelong collaboration with him.

Cassina By this time, Takahama was already fascinated by modern art, in particular the Dada movement – his ‘Marcel’ seating collection (1965, pictured top) was a tribute to Marcel Duchamp. Based on

polyurethane blocks connected by aluminium brackets, it offered the possibility of endless configurations. It was followed by the ‘Saori’ wall lamp for Nemo in 1973, which evokes the slashed canvases of Spatialist artist Lucio Fontana. After Gavina persuaded Takahama to move to Italy permanently – which he did in 1963, settling with his wife Naeko in Bologna – the designer combined architectural and furniture projects. In 1967, he collaborated with Gavina on Bologna’s The Centre Duchamp, a space for creative innovation. He also continued to fuse his beloved modernist style with Japanese traditions, such as lacquerware. With a structure reminiscent of origami, his ‘Antella’ lacquer table for Cassina in 1974 features folding panels that transform it from oval centrepiece to slender console. The ‘Gaja’ stackable chair (1978) and ‘Djuna’ low table (1983), also for Cassina, recall Bauhaus tubular steel forms.

De Pasquale & Maffini Takahama also flirted with Surrealism. In 1971, he worked with installation artist François-Xavier

Lalanne on the illustrated ‘Rhinocéros’ lacquer screen. Soon after came the ‘Mantilla’ sofa for Paradisoterrestre (1974), which was inspired by the idea of covering furniture with dust-sheets in a shut-up house. Its flowing ‘mantle’ cover is replaceable, so the sofa’s look can be changed at will. The designer kept working until his final years and left a lasting legacy in Bologna: designing the façade of the city’s Guglielmo Marconi Airport and the shelters at its bus stops.

retr fitting f r net zer There’s an Ecodan for every home Find out more at

28 Home Design


Open up the great outdoors and prepare for a season of alf resco entertaining with Cullifords. From outdoor worktops and eye-catching feature walls to durable floor surfaces, the man-made and natural stone surface specialists have a wide range of materials that are suitable for outdoor areas. Outdoor kitchens have boomed in popularity over the past few years. For a statement outdoor island, opt for Baltic Brown Granite as a waterfall worktop. Featuring light brown dappled detailing on a black background, the Finnish granite will pair beautifully with natural materials and textures such as rattan and teak for an outdoor space that exudes luxury. For a brighter aesthetic, the Aran White granite is also a suitable choice for an outdoor island or table surface. Characterised by a subtle translucency, the Brazilian granite is guaranteed to act as a stunning focal point when entertaining. Featuring pigments of white and orange swirls against a jet black background, the exquisite Cosmic Black Granite is the perfect splashback choice for an outdoor BBQ area. A cloudy blue quartzite with variations of tone throughout, Roma Blue is quarried from Brazil and is guaranteed to leave a lasting impression. Ideal as a statement wall feature, it will work exceptionally as an outdoor focal point, in particular when used as a f ireplace surround. Piracema granite offers an equally stunning spectacle, with swirling greys, blues and occasional hints of pink, it will

hold up to the outdoor elements and pop against any greenery and foliage. Sourcing some of the world’s most exotic and finest materials, Cullifords’ range of exceptional f ine quality natural and manmade stone is guaranteed to help you make a truly stunning s t a te m e n t . Fro m ki tch e n splashbacks and worktops to flooring and bathroom walls, the arresting detail, rare colouring and striking patterns of Cullifords’ stones will transform any interior into an extraordinarily distinctive scheme.

Extemely weather & UV resistant Very water and dirt resistant Reduces wood swelling and shrinkage Resists the growth of algae, mildew & fungal attack Microporous, breathable finish No sanding necessary for future applications


Panasonic’s New Etherea Graphite Grey: Designed for the Most Stylish Homes • • • •

Stylish colour to suit any interior nanoe™X built-in for 24/7 protection Highest energy ranking of A+++ Built-in Wi-Fi and voice assistant compatibility

Panasonic Heating & Cooling Solutions is launching its brand new, stylish Graphite Grey units to the Etherea with nanoe™X range of air conditioners, available in capacities 2kW – 3.5kW. Heating and cooling to suit any home Designed to blend seamlessly into the most stylish homes, the latest addition joins the existing silver matt and pure white matt units, allowing for a wider choice to suit more interiors. The high-quality wall mounted air conditioner has an elegant design with a body width of just 870mm and has been meticulously designed to allow for easy installation and maintenance. Additionally, the units also co m e w i t h a n e a s y - to use remote controller with an ergonomic design and tapered rear housing for the most comfortable grip. The minimalist remote controller allows for an aesthetically pleasing design.

nanoe™X: improving protection 24/7 A very welcome addition to any home, the smart Etherea unit comes with nanoe™X technology built-in to improve protection 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Abundant in nature, hydroxyl radicals have the capacity to inhibit 5 types of pollutants, including certain viruses and bacteria as well as odours to clean and deodorise. nanoe™X technology can bring these incredible benefits indoors so that hard surfaces, soft furnishings, and the indoor environment can be a cleaner and pleasant place to be. High-quality performance It’s not just about the looks: not only are the units stylish in design and colour, but they also boast the highest energy rank of A+++ in heating and cooling and a super quiet operation noise of just 19dB(A), providing the greatest level of comfort. The units also utilise Panasonic’s R32 Inverter Compressor for a lower environmental impact.

The range is available in single and multi-split. Single split systems require simply one indoor and outdoor unit, whereas the multi-split range is suitable for applications where air conditioning requirements exceed the ambit of a single room, allowing up to 5 indoor units to be connected to a single outdoor unit. Advanced smart control and voice assistant The Etherea units come with built-in Wi-Fi which enables advanced smart control and voice assistant. The units can pair with Panasonic’s Comfort Cloud app which is specially designed to easily manage all system functions simply via a smart device. Through the Comfort Cloud app, Etherea units can also be connected to some of the leading voice assistants on the market to further optimise air conditioning standards without having to lift a finger. For more information, please click here.

31 NATIONAL HOUSEBUILDER KEEPMOAT HOMES WELCOMED CITY MAYOR, PETER SOULSBY, TO ITS LATEST DEVELOPMENT IN LEICESTER, WATERSIDE. During the visit, the Mayor and accompanying Council members were given an in-depth tour of the 17.2- acre development, located on Frog Island including visiting the new showhome, The Barkby. Alongside the tour, the City Mayor also met with the f irst residents who have already moved into their new homes at the development, gaining an insight into what city living is like in the transformed area. Overlooking the Grand Union Canal, Waterside is an exciting new development featuring a mix of over 350 new one- and twobedroom apartments and two-, three and four-bedroom homes, aimed at working professionals aspiring for sustainable city living on the waterfront with an enviable urban design, and including at least 55 affordable units. In addition to the new homes, homebuyers will also benefit from new public green spaces and a new canalside path opening up the waterfront, along with 60,000sqft of Grade A office space. City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “Leicester’s waterside has for a long time had immense potential for regeneration, and bringing that redevelopment forward for the benefit of the city has been a longheld ambition of mine. “These new homes are a key part of that, and the catalyst for the surrounding waterside developments. The city council’s regeneration strategy for the city has included assembling this brownf ield site using £25m of grants and council funds to compulsorily purchase run down and disused areas along the River Soar, as well as securing outline planning consent for these new homes. “ We’ve worked closely with Ke e p m o a t H o m e s a s o u r development partners to reach this important stage in making

Leicester City Mayor Visits 350 Unit Housing Development in Leicester Leicester’s waterside a vibrant, attractive area in which to live and work.” Since 2015, around 1,000 new houses and apartments have been delivered in the waterside area, along with around 1,000 student spaces, the Novotel and Adagio (200beds), new bowling alley and over 75,000sqft of new office space built at Friars Mill, Great Central Square and Northgate Street. Shaun Fielding, Regional Managing Director at Keepmoat Homes said “We’re thrilled to have hosted the City Mayor and members of Leicester City Council, so that they can witness the great progress that we’ve made at Waterside and how the new housing development will provide the people of Leicester a great place to live.

of bespoke houses and apartments, formed within an incredible urban layout which has already attracted potential new homeowners to the area, who will further enhance the city’s economy.” Work at waterside is expected to take five years to complete. For more information on Waterside, Leicester, click here. The news comes after Keepmoat Homes’ East Midlands team recently relocated their off ice to Ke e p m o a t H o m e s Ea s t Midlands, Unit 1, Interchange 25 Business Park, Bostocks Lane, Nottingham NG10 5QG

“We’ve worked collaboratively with Leicester City Council and the City’s design team to create a development




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