Tag Archives: safety flooring

‘Eastern promise’ with Gerflor

The council-run Eastern Leisure Centre in Cardiff had more than 250,000 users last year, but was in urgent need of modernisation. New features have been an open reception area, improved changing rooms, gym and soft play facilities; a new dance studio and spin room.


Councillor Peter Bradbury, cabinet member for community development, Co-operatives and social enterprise, said at the time, “The modernisation of Eastern Leisure Centre has enjoyed strong support from both the community and elected councillors so this multimillion-pound investment will be welcome news.”

The project would be a perfect ‘fit’ for international flooring and interiors specialist Gerflor. They would provide their high-end Taralay Impression Control safety flooring in ‘Infinity Greige’ and ‘Esterel Chocolate’ colours, together with their uber-performing Taraflex® sports flooring in ‘Maple’ and ‘Lagoon’ to the appointed installers Cardiff-based Puma Floors Ltd.

Puma Floors Ltd was founded in November 2001, expanding over the years they now have their own premises together with a fleet of branded vehicles. With a hard-working, talented team of floor-layers, Puma Floors confidently deliver their ability as a company to meet the demands and expectations of their expanding client base, providing specialist flooring work across Wales and the rest of the UK.

Matthew Graves, Commercial Director, Puma Floors Ltd, commented, “We originally provided a quotation at the tender stage when the main contractor was appointed and progressed our sales activity to secure the work by providing a new quotation, which subsequently meant we were appointed”.

With Taralay Impression Control and Taraflex® Sport M Performance from Gerflor being included in the original tender document the project was clearly aiming for high quality products throughout the 1600m2 element of the re-fit.

Gerflor won the 2016 CFJ/CFA product of the year category with their Taralay Impression Control range.

This safety flooring collection is perfect for both refurbishments and new builds. A multi-purpose floorcovering available in 2m sheet format with a Group T wear rating, it’s ideal for a host of heavy traffic environments where slip resistance is a must.

Available as a dual collection: – ‘Safety in Wood’ and ‘Safety in Design’, the range includes realistic woods in contemporary colours and modern all over designs. Taralay Impression Control also has a Pendulum Test value +36, meets HSE guidelines (BS 7976-2) and R11 ramp test value (DIN 51130), together with providing 24 design-led colourways and is suitable for healthcare, education, retail, public spaces, offices and other commercial interiors.

Taralay Impression Control also offers a hygienic solution thanks to a revolutionary UV cured PUR surface treatment for easy cleaning and maintenance. With the Protecsol® Control surface treatment it’s easy to clean, is 100% recyclable offers a state-of-the-art flooring solution for a myriad of applications.

The Eastern Leisure Centre would need a top-performing sports floor to meet the rigours demands of this hugely popular facility which has high levels of sports and leisure traffic.


Taraflex® vinyl sports flooring from Gerflor has been used in many international and local sporting events and is available in 17 colours and three wood-effect designs.

It is available in various solutions meeting different levels of the EN 14904 Standard delivering the full scope of indoor sports surfaces from P1 to P3 solutions. Taraflex® is recognised for providing durability, safety and comfort without impairing performance.

A unique value proposition, the Comfort range offers greater than 45% force reduction, making it unrivalled in the marketplace in terms of offering comfort for users. Taraflex® meets the EN Standard of 22196 for anti- bacterial activity (E. coli – S. aureus – MRSA) (3) returning >99% levels of growth inhibition.

The product is also treated with Protecsol®, which renders polish redundant and is triple action meaning no polish is ever required, it contributes to easy maintenance and is anti-friction burn and slide/grip. Taraflex® has a double density foam backing and with another bonus, it’s environmentally friendly.

Gerflor offers several installation solutions for Taraflex® including the Eco-Fit System which is a fast, free floating installation and it’s versatile enough to be used in various multi-specialist applications.

Matthew Graves finally concluded by saying, “we would definitely specify Gerflor products again. The Eastern Leisure Centre has been a good contract to be involved in, hopefully the refurbished building will be used and enjoyed by the local community for years to come”.

Learn more about Gerflor solutions: ask for a free sample or contact us to speak to a specialist today by calling 01926 622 600, emailing contractuk@gerflor.com, or visiting gerflor.co.uk for the latest innovations.

Altro Xpresslay brings fast turnaround and cost savings at 27 new build schools

The proven cost and time saving credentials of award-winning Altro LooselayTM technology has lead to Altro XpressLayTM safety flooring being selected for installation in 27 new schools being built in the North East of England.

Galliford Try is building the new schools as part of the Priority School Building Programme (PSBP). Galliford Try has a longstanding Supply Chain Agreement with Altro, so when it came to specifying flooring for the PSBP schools, both companies worked closely together to select a high quality, cost-effective flooring that was also quick to install.flooring

Roy Perry, Galliford Try Contracts Manager, said: “We chose to work with Altro on the PSBP scheme due to the strength of our supply chain relationship and their array of appropriate products for the schools.

“We selected Altro XpressLay because it’s a cost-competitive option that would also save us installation time on all the priority school schemes in this region. In many instances we require a quick turnaround, as Galliford Try is under pressure to deliver the schools within set timescales.

“We have been pleased with the service we have received from Altro and the flooring contractors, which has enabled us to complete the work to the customers’ satisfaction.”

Altro XpressLay is the world’s first ever adhesive-free safety flooring, and features Altro Looselay technology. Altro Looselay technology allows any subfloor moisture to escape. It has been designed to lie flat, without the need to be adhered. Altro Looselay doubled-sided, moisture-tolerant tape is used to secure the flooring in place while you weld. As there is no adhesive you get same-day welding and can walk on the floor straight away. Altro XpressLay can be easily removed post-installation, re-used elsewhere and then recycled at the end of its life.

The range boasts 42 colours, featuring bright and subtle, sparkle-free designs and decorative chipped options to choose from. The Altro XpressLay palette matches with Altro WalkwayTM 20 safety flooring, enabling both ranges to be combined to suit the application.

Altro XpressLay also features Altro Easyclean technology with superior chemical and stain resistance, to ensure it stays looking good for longer.

The flagship school for the PSBP scheme, and one of the first to be built, is the £18.6 million Hessle High School and Sixth Form College in East Yorkshire. Previously Hessle High was split over two sites, with 1,450 students, including 200 students in the sixth form.

The new build, designed by DLA Architecture Ltd in Leeds, has created a combined, fit-for-purpose school that operates from just one site, with new science labs, ICT and teaching areas and sports facilities for up to 1,550 pupils, including 230 students in the sixth form.

Phoenix Flooring Division installed 5,500m2 of Altro XpressLay throughout Hessle High School in four different shades; Waterfall on stairs and corridors; Blizzard in laboratories; Fog in wet areas; and Roof Garden in the stores.

The easy-to-fit capabilities of Altro XpressLay meant big savings in time and a trouble-free installation, as Phoenix Flooring MD Matt Brown explained.

“With Altro XpressLay there is no need to lay a dpm, and it can be fitted without adhesives,” said Matt. “This makes it very cost and time effective, and fitter friendly too. We know that every time we use this flooring we save a lot of time on a project, so for us it’s a great choice all round.

“Prior to fitting at the school, we prepared the substrate with a smoothing compound to create a true, flat surface. We then fitted Altro Looselay double-sided moisture tolerant adhesive tape to all perimeters and areas where the flooring would have joints. This helps the flooring to stay in place.

“Then it was simply a case of cutting the sheets of Altro XpressLay to fit, laying them into position, removing the backing from the adhesive tape, and rolling the flooring back into place. Joints were finally hot welded to finish off.

“We were on site for three months, with eight fitters working at the busiest period. We had excellent support from Altro throughout the entire project, but they always deliver a very high level of back-up.”

Mark Owen, Facilities Manager at Hessle High School is happy that Altro XpressLay is ticking all the right boxes. “We had a mixture of lino and tiles in the old school, which looked very old fashioned and was neither safe underfoot nor easy to maintain. This new flooring looks superb, colourful and modern, and it’s a proven safety flooring that can stand up to the rigours of busy school life.

“There has been no rucking or movement at all. It’s as firm and reliable as any flooring fitted with adhesive. So for a school it’s a great product, because we have the flexibility to repair or reuse the flooring in the future if required.

“Maintaining the flooring is proving easy as well, and it cleans up very nicely. We mop as and when required, and for areas which get the most traffic and dirt we use a walk-behind scrubber regularly. During school holidays we give everything a much more thorough going over with a circular scrubber, which brings the floors back to their very best.”


Gentle care from Gerflor

Kilbryde Hospice in East Kilbride, just south of Glasgow in Scotland is a voluntary independent 10-bed hospice which exists to provide specialist palliative care to patients with life-limiting progressive illnesses, together with delivering high levels of support and understanding for their relatives and carers.vinyl floor covering In 2012 an appeal to raise the money necessary was backed by Scots engineering entrepreneur and honorary president of the hospice Jim McColl, who donated £200,000 to the project. Rangers FC manager Ally McCoist, TV presenter Lorraine Kelly and comedian Andy Cameron were also patrons of the appeal.

With funding in place the new facility is now open and operated in partnership with NHS Lanarkshire. Chairman of NHS Lanarkshire Ken Corsar said at the time, “We are delighted to be working with Kilbryde Hospice to develop services that can make a real difference to the quality of life for people facing life-threatening and life-limiting illness”.

As a new build the project needed some 2000m2 of high quality flooring that would not only look stunning, but would also be able to stand up to the rigours of daily use in a busy healthcare environment.

The appointed Architect, Eddie Kerr chose a selection of Gerflor products to fulfil this challenging task. A mixture of Gerflor’s Taralay Impression Comfort, Creation 70 Luxury Vinyl Tile and Planks and Tarasafe™ Ultra H²O, together with products from their SPM handrails was specified.

As a true healthcare multi-specialist and with over sixty years’ healthcare experience, Gerflor has grown and developed to become an expert in this field by creating, manufacturing and marketing innovative, decorative, durable, hygienic and environmentally-responsible flooring for a host of healthcare-related solutions.vinyl floor coveringWith ten new extra designs Taralay Impression Comfort is an acoustic multi layered vinyl floor covering available in 2m wide sheet, with a group T wear rating.

Taralay Impression Comfort comprises a Very High Density (VHD) foam backing reinforced with glass fibre and a printed design that’s protected by a transparent wear layer (0.65 mm thick) which offers 19 dB sound insulation and an indentation resistance of 0.08 mm.

The product is protected by a UV cured surface treatment Protecsol® which is easy to maintain and permanently eliminates the need of an acrylic emulsion (metallisation).

It does not contain any heavy metals or CMR 1&2 and it is 100% compliant with REACH. The product emission rate of volatile organic compounds is < 70 µg/m3 (TVOC after 28 days – ISO 16000 -6). It is also 100% recyclable.vinyl floor coveringThroughout the Kilbryde Hospice the need to raise the ‘look’ of the communal areas was high on the agenda. It would be a remit perfectly suited to Gerflor’s new Creation LVT range.

The sophisticated Red Dot Award winning Creation 70 LVT range offers a brand new palette of realistic wood and mineral finishes in tile and plank formats with beveled edges.

In addition to this, the looselay Clic System’s unique vertical interlocking format allows this product to be laid quickly over most existing surfaces, with no need to close premises during refurbishments saving customers time, money and inconvenience.

The Creation 70 LVT range is also 100% recyclable, REACH compliant and is treated with PUR+ surface treatment, providing excellent cleaning characteristics and improved resistance to scratching.vinyl floor covering
The hospice would also have to cater for the myriad of applications where patients and staff could shower and bathe in both comfort and safety. The ultimate choice for wet and dry, barefoot and shod applications,

Tarasafe™ Ultra H²O high performance safety flooring from Gerflor is an ideal solution for shower and changing rooms, together with any high level risk wet areas where heavy duty slip resistant flooring is needed. Tarasafe™ Ultra H²O is competitively priced and scores the best possible safety rating in the wet barefoot ramp test (DIN 51097) and wet shod test (DIN 51130).vinyl floor coveringTarasafe™ Ultra H²O is also rated Grade C in the barefoot ramp test – the best possible – and >36 in the wet pendulum test. It also scores R11 in the slip resistance wet shod test.

Designed with a raised emboss, Tarasafe™ Ultra H²O is available in eight stunning colours, which complements Tarasafe™ Ultra’s most popular colourways. It is available for delivery in two metre width rolls within 48 hours of ordering to most parts of the United Kingdom and its lighter weight and improved flexibility allow for quicker and easier installation.

Like many healthcare environments the daily grind of trolleys and wheelchairs is a constant wear factor for most of the premises. It’s a problem area where Gerflor can provide the ideal solution.

SPM International has been integrated into the Gerflor brand, offering customers a suite of reliable and decorative systems providing safety, hygiene, easy maintenance and noise management.

Gerflor SPM offers a comprehensive range of wall and door protection, corner protectors and handrails in an extensive range of finishes. vinyl floor coveringThe Gerflor SPM Starline range of handrails specified at the hospice has an innovative bactericidal joint and includes an elegant anodised aluminium or antibacterial PVC-sheathed handrail with a lightly textured PVC band.

The collection includes three finishes for the aluminium profile and thirty-two colours for the PVC band. These handrails coordinate with a specially developed range of corner protectors that resist impact and the effects of cleaning, together with the constant use of disinfectant products and have demonstrated strong resistance to tear-off and impact damage.vinyl floor coveringLearn more about Gerflor solutions, ask for a free sample or contact us to speak to a specialist today by calling 01926 622 600, emailing contractuk@gerflor.com, or visiting gerflor.co.uk for the latest innovations.

Altro Pisces harnesses innovative technology to create home-from-home wet environments


Altro has unveiled innovative Altro PiscesTM, a wet environment safety flooring for shoes and bare feet which combines all the benefits of safety flooring with the look and feel of home.

Altro Pisces is the first flooring to be developed with new AltroBeadTM Technology, giving a soft and domestic feel developed with comfort, warmth and relaxation in mind and avoiding the clinical feel that some home-from-home environments create. With a Pendulum Test Value (PTV) of ≥50, a soft-look finish and 16 attractive shades, Altro Pisces allows you to bridge the gap between high-performance safety flooring and demands for domestic-style flooring, bringing together the best of both worlds.

Altro Pisces uses unique AltroBead Technology. For each of the shades, tiny beads in three carefully selected hues are blended and evenly distributed into the flooring on top of the base colour. The result is the consistent, soft appearance that you would expect and want from domestic interiors. The subtle blend of four colours in each shade makes matching or choosing walls and fixtures much easier.


Developed for environments such as care homes, student accommodation, spas and social housing, Altro Pisces has been designed to fit perfectly with Altro WhiterockTM hygienic wall cladding, forming a sealed, watertight system for enhanced safety and hygiene. Combined with the smooth appearance of Altro Whiterock SatinsTM or Altro Whiterock DigicladTM, it creates an impressive high-end look and allows tailored designs, resulting in exactly the look and feel required.

When it comes to safety, Altro Pisces is uncompromising. It provides slip-resistance of one in a million against common contaminants found in wet environments including shampoo, conditioner and shower gel (tested using slider 96 (shoes) and slider 55 (bare feet)). It provides a high level of slip-resistance whether wet or dry, putting less pressure on maintenance teams to keep flooring dry. This means that carers can focus on bathing, drying and dressing residents without having to worry about them or their patient slipping. With the product durability you would expect from Altro, Altro Pisces maintains its slip-resistance throughout its lifetime, making it resistant to wear and tear from shoes yet developed to go easy on bare feet.

Altro Pisces’ nature-inspired shades and soft finish make it the perfect choice for home adaptations, where keeping vulnerable users and their carers safe is paramount. Being able to put Altro safety flooring into a home environment helps maintain independence, playing a role in keeping someone in their own home for as long as possible. To make it easier for carers and cleaning teams, Altro Pisces contains Altro Easyclean Maxis PUR™ Technology so cleaning is an easier and quicker job.

In line with Altro’s commitment to sustainability, Altro Pisces is manufactured using responsibly sourced materials. It is 100% recyclable post-installation which means any off-cuts can be recycled through the Recofloor™ scheme. Clean off-cuts can be collected free of charge from dedicated collection sites around the UK and sent to be recycled into other PVC products, reducing waste sent to landfill.


Altro flooring & wall cladding on cutting edge of excellence at new university science centre


Altro flooring and wall cladding are providing a total, high-level solution of hygiene, safety and contemporary style at a new state-of-the-art science and engineering centre at the University of Wolverhampton.

Designed and equipped to offer cutting-edge teaching and research facilities to future scientists, the new £25m Rosalind Franklin Building has been fitted with Altro WhiterockTM hygienic wall cladding, AltroScreed QuartzTM resin flooring, and Altro Designer TM 25 safety flooring.

The bronze-clad building was designed by architect Berman Guedes Stretton. Their vision was to create a contemporary structure that would support modern learning and revitalise the surrounding area. The architects’ Principal Director, Gary Collins, explains how they realised this vision. “Science and technology is a huge growth area at the university, both in terms of student demand for courses, and also because local industry in that field is on the up. This meant the university wanted to invest in a teaching and research facility that could meet this increasing need and provide the most sophisticated, state-of-the-art experience, both in terms of structure and the resources and equipment inside.


“The products we used needed to meet a number of criteria. Wall cladding for the labs had to be hygienic, easy to maintain and have real impact to complement our design for a modern contemporary space. Altro Whiterock is the industry standard for this type of requirement, and we and the scientific community know and trust it. We specify it all the time, so this was our number one choice.”

Altro Whiterock hygienic wall cladding is a cost-effective, durable, grout-free, water-tight smooth hygienic wall cladding system designed for building environments that are required to meet strict hygiene standards. The panels provide a stain resistant, wipe-clean surface with no gaps or cracks for bacteria to hide in. It is extremely impact resistant and ideal for tough areas. It meets current EU Directives on health and hygiene.

Gary Collins adds: “We specifically wanted resin flooring for the ground floor and reception area. It needed to be durable, ideal for heavy traffic areas, robust and resistant to chemicals, yet also attractive, decorative and contemporary in its look.


“We went to Coventry Transport Museum with Altro and the main contractor Kier to take a look at the AltroScreed Quartz resin flooring fitted in reception, to see for ourselves how it could work in practice.

“We were very impressed that it was both tough and attractive, and easy to clean. We spoke to their maintenance staff and they assured us that even after sump oil spillages and heavy vehicles driving over it, the flooring came up like new. On this basis we decided it would be the perfect flooring for the Rosalind Franklin Building too.

“As part of that same visit we also asked Altro to give some guidance about safety flooring for the labs and upper floors of the Rosalind Franklin Building. The brief was to find a product that was hard-wearing, hygienic, one that could resist chemical spillages and be very safe underfoot, but with a contemporary design that would fit in with our vision.

“They showed us Altro Designer 25 and it ticked all the boxes. We were particularly impressed that it can be hot welded to produce flooring that is impervious to dirt. Plus, at 2.5mm thick, it can stand the test of time against heavy footfall, and resist chemicals in the lab.”

AltroScreed Quartz is a solvent-free system in which blended decorative quartz is bound with clear epoxy resin and finished with clear seal coats. The product provides a high-strength, chemically resistant decorative floor surface that can be coved and laid to drainage falls. It is available in nominal thicknesses of 4mm to 6mm. It has low slip resistance and is ideally suited to medium-duty production areas, entrance lobbies, offices, shops, circulation areas and laboratories.  It has a closed surface texture that reduces dirt retention, making it easy to clean and maintain.  The floor was sealed with Altro Screed Seal Rapicure Plus, providing additional slip resistance.

Altro Designer 25 is a 2.5mm thick hard-wearing safety flooring that includes coloured quartz crystals in striking base colour to enhance any interior scheme. Easy to lay, it can be hot welded to produce an unobtrusive and impervious floor, minimising the ingress of dirt and helping to maintain hygiene standards. It also boasts long-term durability and excellent slip resistance, which make it ideal for medium to heavy-duty environments.

Kier appointed Polydeck Resins to install the AltroScreed Quartz system. Director of Polydeck Resins, Gavin Tidball, says: “Laying of the decorative resin system requires experienced fully trained operatives working through the various stages of the installation having an eye for detail to ensure the high standard of finishes can be delivered to our client.

“As this was a new build scheme part of which was on top of an existing ground floor base, we needed to prepare the floor first, and an area of 400m2,of polymer screed was installed to create a flat surface betweeen the new and old slabs. Once this had cured sufficiently, we applied the AltroProof DPM primer, then the AltroScreed Quartz base and finally the clear seals to finish.

“Given the project was fast track we used the Rapicure version of the Altro resin, which meant we could complete the work in good time and free-up the area for other contractors.

“We also created coved skirting to the perimeter walls, so there was a smooth finish throughout, laying the base screed in one application to avoid any joints or seams to the  cove and floor interfaces. The project took about two weeks to complete and we worked closely with Kier and Altro, who gave us great support throughout.”

Kier also appointed specialist floors and walls contractor, Pinnacle, to install the Altro Whiterock, and Altro Designer 25 in the new build. Pinnacle’s longstanding relationship with both Altro and Kier was instrumental in the final choice of products.

Pinnacle MD, Scott Myers, says: “The architect specified Altro from the outset, but this was such a high-profile project that there was, naturally, a great deal of interest from other flooring and walling manufacturers as well.

“We have worked closely with Altro for many years, and in our experience their products are second to none in terms of quality and reliability — but they also offer colours, textures and overall solutions that can deliver visual appeal in the most innovative and challenging design projects. There is a great deal of confidence in the industry for Altro and their reputation is well deserved

“Kier is also a longstanding partner for us, and we were able to demonstrate to them that, for a project of this size and significance, Altro had the product range that could meet all the client’s practical needs, and also deliver the design impact they wanted to achieve.

“Budget was also a key factor in the decision-making process, and Altro proved to be a very cost-effective solution overall.”

Scott Myers continues: “The installation programming was quite complex in terms of scheduling and sequencing. This was due to the number of mechanical and electrical services that had to be installed on site before we could gain access. It was all about co-operation, but everyone worked very well together.

“Altro flooring and walling products are simple and straightforward to install, which is one of the reasons we like using the products. Firstly we prepared the floors prior to fitting, and this was a fairly standard process of scarifying the floor to create a clean, smooth surface, laying an epoxy dpm, then finally a Latex smoothing compound.

“There was a large quantity of product to install; 3,600m² of Altro Designer 25, and 1,400m² of Altro Whiterock.”

The University’s Maintenance Manager, Neil Howells, comments: “We are very happy with the completed job. The Altro products reflect the cutting edge design of the building, providing vision and opportunity for our students. We are sure that the choices made by the architects will prove as practical as they are aesthetically pleasing — early indications appear to support this viewpoint.

“Phase One of the build has been in use since September 2014, and the products have been performing well in that time. Feedback from our cleaning and maintenance team has also been very positive, with no problems, and the flooring and walling still looks as good as they did nine months ago.

“I would recommend the use of Altro as quality products that give competitive whole life value for money, and the professional helpful technical support that is readily provided. In short; a valued supplier.”


Nestlé Spain achieves high design with Altro safety flooring

Nestle-Altro Walkway-04-1

1,000 people work daily at the headquarters of Nestlé in Barcelona, Spain, and the company hosts more than 50,000 visitors annually. This high level of traffic also spills over into the catering and cafeteria areas. These areas have been recently modernised with a range of Altro safety flooring products to provide better service to staff and visitors.

An essential part of the refurbishment was the choice of flooring. There was a need for a high design using different colours and shapes, but it also had to adhere to safety and hygiene regulations for dining and catering areas. The project also needed to be completed quickly to minimise disruption to the normal activity of the dining rooms. With 250,000 meals served annually at the offices of Nestlé, Eurest Catalunya, a company belonging to Compass Group, was able to install Altro safety flooring without interrupting the normal business day.

In the self service and dining room areas, approximately 1,000m² of Altro Walkway 20 in two different colours and Altro Wood Safety were used. Altro Stronghold 30 was used in the kitchen. For the cafe on the ground floor, about 200m² of two different shades of Altro Walkway 20 were used. Altro flooring was chosen for its slip resistance, versatility and ease of installation and the ability to create a high spec design without compromising on safety.

Jordi Massip, Restoration Supervisor at Eurest, said, “The floor was installed in stages and the dining room was not closed during the installation. The flooring was easy to install, and in two days the area was open and fully operational.

Nestle-Altro Walkway-Altro Wood Safety-07

“The slip resistance of the flooring was the most important feature for us. In areas where kitchen staff were working we installed Altro Stronghold 30. We chose this product because it provides safety, hygiene and cleanliness in the kitchen.”

The Altro safety flooring was used to create special effects with the combination of different tones.

“Aesthetically it offers many possibilities, and worked well with the new design concept where we wanted to create an edgy line and neutral tones. In the small dining room for executives created to seat 16 people, we installed four rectangular areas where the furnishings differed, and successfully used Altro safety flooring to create a groundbreaking and highly aesthetic area,” Massip said.

Daniel Alcaide, from installer Colober Flooring Light, said, “The biggest challenge on this project was to carry out the work without closing the dining room, which meant we had to work in instalments. In the cafe downstairs we used a two colour design, following the pattern of the floor with curved lines, which is only possible with flooring such as Altro safety flooring.

“We have maximised the benefits of Altro: safety, ease of installation and aesthetics. As for standards and inspections, with Altro safety flooring there is no problem, as it is always above the requirements of the regulations and that is reassuring,” said Alcaide.

Altro Stronghold 30 is Altro’s specialist commercial kitchen flooring, and is ideal for areas where grease, oil and fats may be present. It achieves Altro’s highest rating for slip resistance (TRRL≥55, R12). It is designed to minimise risk in wet and greasy conditions for the lifetime of the flooring. As well as helping to keep staff safe from slips, it also helps reduce their fatigue, thanks to its 3mm thickness which provides noise reduction and comfort underfoot.

Altro Walkway is a hugely popular, hard-wearing 2mm safety flooring which provides lifelong slip and abrasion resistance. The range has 42 colours – featuring bright and subtle, sparkle-free designs, and decorative chipped options which give you enhanced design flexibility.

When you want to create a homely, comforting and familiar look but you don’t want to compromise on safety, Altro Wood Safety is ideal. The range offers 16 wood-look designs, including classic, contemporary classic and on-trend – so you can vary the mood from cool and classy to warm and nurturing.


Altro Flooring brings massive benefits to pioneering dementia ward at Warrington Hospital

Altro and Warrington Hospital 2

Nearly a year after Altro safety flooring was installed in a pioneering new dementia ward at Warrington Hospital, statistics have revealed that the products are helping to vastly improve life for patients and staff.

This is effectively setting the standard for flooring in clinical environments where creating a relaxed, calming and safe environment is paramount.

The £1m Forget Me Not ward opened at Warrington Hospital in May 2014, with the aim of leading the way in providing the best quality care for hospital patients with dementia.

The ward features a number of innovative design features, including its own mock bus stop, lounge area with traditional-look fireplace, quiet room with a 1960s-style TV, and a special dementia garden area. Everything is designed to provide relaxation and stimulation for patients who need hospital care, and who also have dementia.

Lee Bushell, Warrington Hospital’s Estates Officer, Capital Projects, said: “The results we have seen so far are astounding and show that we have got it right. There are fewer patient attacks on staff, fewer slips, trips and falls, and patients with a history of violence are quickly calm and relaxed after arriving at the unit.

“The length of stay on the ward has vastly reduced — which for a unit with only 21 beds is a major consideration — and there is less sickness and absence among staff because they are happier in their working environment.

“There are no issues with cleaning at all, and the flooring still looks good and is performing very well.”

Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust was one of the largest beneficiaries from the £50 million national King’s Fund, which helps shape health policy and practice.

Lee Bushell said: “Warrington’s Forget Me Not ward has been designed to look different to a typical ward. The needs of patients with dementia are very specific. Our aim was to cater to these absolutely in the creation of the new ward, and provide a calm and relaxing environment for care using the latest design principles, colour and light.

“There are many different types of dementia and because everyone is unique, everyone is affected by it in different ways. But there are several things that many sufferers experience, such as forgetfulness, disorientation of time and place, difficulty planning ahead and with short-term memory, and occasionally hallucinations. Understandably, this can often lead to patients becoming anxious or distressed.

“By understanding how dementia affects sufferers, we were able to create a dementia-friendly environment that both minimises the stresses that patients experience, while providing positive stimuli in a homely, calming space.”

Forget Me Not ward is a very clearly defined space, prioritising what is most important. The lighting is much brighter than normal, and there is good tonal contrast between flooring, skirtings, walls and doors, and glare is avoided.

Strong colours have been used, and feature walls make rooms look more three-dimensional. Frequent ‘cues’, such as familiar objects and pictures, are also vital as they help with orientation.

Flooring plays an important role in dementia-friendly design, because dementia patients need to feel confident moving around the space. Using matt flooring is essential, as reflective surfaces can cause confusion, and speckling or sparkles need to be avoided. Flooring must be safe underfoot, as well, and with a tone and texture that is warm and comforting.Altro and Warrington Hospital

“We chose Altro Wood SafetyTM and Altro AquariusTM flooring for the new ward because we have used them both at Warrington Hospital before with great success, so I knew they would be the right choice for this project,” explains Lee.

Altro Wood Safety has been installed throughout the ward and public areas. Its timber-look design is warm and familiar, which is a key issue for patient wellbeing. Plus of course it provides slip-resistance underfoot for the patients.”

The Altro Wood Safety™ range of 16 wood-look designs offers a combination of classic, contemporary classic and on trend designs, which are ideal in locations where first impressions count and you can’t afford to compromise on safety.

The palette enables mood to vary from cool and classy for spas and lobbies, to warm and nurturing for the healthcare and educational sectors. The sparkle-free finish makes it particularly ideal for application in dementia settings.

The range benefits from Altro Easyclean Maxis PUR Technology for optimum, long term cleaning and maintenance performance.

Altro Aquarius has been fitted in the ward’s showers, bathrooms and toilets. “The benefit of Altro Aquarius is that it’s safe underfoot in wet areas with both bare feet and shoes, so for an environment where staff wearing shoes will be assisting patients with bare feet, it’s ideal,” Lee says. “It’s also a very hygienic product which has been specifically developed for clinical environments.”

Altro Aquarius™ was developed for lasting performance in wet and dry, shoes or barefoot. Achieving a pendulum test value of TRRL ≥50 and Class B to DIN51097 for barefoot use, Altro Aquarius provides optimum lifetime sustained slip-resistance in wet and dry environments. This innovation revolutionises product selection for potentially wet areas, because it removes the uncertainty of how and where to specify and install safety flooring for mixed barefoot and shoe use. It’s a 2mm safety floor that has been extensively tested on a variety of shoe types to ensure top performance in a host of environments – bathrooms, changing areas, hospital wards. Anywhere you can expect a wet and dry floor environment. It’s also easy to clean, with Altro Easyclean Maxis PUR technology, meaning it’s at the forefront of safety floor cleaning.

“Overall, this is a real success story, and one that we are using to replicate in other areas of the hospital — specifically a stroke unit, where patients often have the same needs and issues,” says Lee.

“But we believe that this type of environment is beneficial across the board in clinical areas, where you can use flooring that has the homely warm look of a vinyl, but with the benefits of excellent safety and hygiene.

“We have proved Altro flooring works extremely well, and we want to take this forward and bring its benefits to other areas of the hospital.”


Altro increases warranty on 2.5mm safety flooring

UB Busy feet - landscape

Altro has increased the warranty, sustained slip resistance and life expectancy on its 2.5mm safety flooring ranges after they have proved their resilience and reliability in some of the world’s most testing environments. Altro Designer 25, Altro Unity 25 and Altro Classic 25 now come with the added peace of mind of a 20 year warranty and 25 year life expectancy and sustained slip resistance.

Altro’s 2.5mm safety flooring provides a supreme standard of durability. The extra 25% thickness makes it significantly more robust than 2mm safety flooring, with resistance to impact damage, mechanical and physical damage and point loading, as well as enhanced durability for heavy duty areas with intense use.

Like all Altro safety flooring, the 2.5mm ranges offer sustained slip resistance for the lifetime of the product, keeping your risk of a slip to just 1 in a million.

An ideal choice for healthcare, education, retail, leisure and industrial environments, Altro’s 2.5mm safety flooring offers extra resistance to foot and wheeled traffic, including trolleys, wheelchairs and service area equipment. It is more resilient to torque, which passes through the wheels and is partially absorbed by and dissipated through the flooring.

Thicker flooring dissipates the energy more effectively, making the flooring less likely to de-bond, minimising and even preventing damage to the subfloor. It also offers enhanced chemical resistance and copes well with moisture and temperature extremes, making it perfect for public walkways that need to work hard under a variety of conditions.

Altro’s 2.5mm safety flooring put to the test

  • The Taber test (based on ASTM C501) shows that Altro Designer 25, Altro Classic 25 and Altro Unity 25 are harder wearing than ceramic tiles and quarry tiles.
  • The tear initiation test (based on BS 2782-3) proves that, to tear 2.5mm Altro safety flooring, you typically need the force of 500 N/cm2. That’s like trying to tear a 1,000-page phone directory in half.
  • The tensile test (based on BS 2782-3) shows Altro 2.5mm safety flooring is as tough to pull apart as concrete – or even tougher.

Case study

The team at Altro Australia revisited a market-leading national chain of retail supermarkets in Doncaster, Victoria to view an Altro 2.5mm safety flooring installation that had been laid in a delicatessen area 35 years ago.

It was still performing its slip-resistant and hygiene functions without any visible signs of wear. Altro decided to test it to see exactly how the slip resistance has stood up after all these years and called an independent test house to conduct a slip resistance Pendulum Test.

As per Australian Standards (AS/NZS 4586), the test was conducted in five separate areas around the floor; including right in front of the chicken cooker, an area that provided a daily challenge for the flooring surfaces. With its radiated heat and the potential for splashes of hot chicken fat, it was one of the most dangerous parts of the floor for slips. The official result for the test was 46, qualifying the floor as a Class W or Low Risk of Slippage.

This is the same expectations as a brand new Altro 2.5mm safety floor from this range.

So, even after 35 years of non-stop use, the flooring was still performing as well as the day it went in.


Altro XpressLay helps slash time & cost at new Cardiff school


Altro XpressLayTM safety flooring has provided a significant time and cost saving solution in the construction of the new St Teilo’s Church in Wales High School in Cardiff.

The new £26 million school was designed by architects Austin-Smith: Lord. It is a contemporary design, with classrooms clustered in blocks off a main central ‘street’.

Kate Smith, designer at Austin-Smith: Lord, said: “Due to the huge length of space of the school’s main street, the floor construction included many movement joints, which had a knock on effect to the movement requirements of the floor finish.

“The main contractor, Willmott Dixon, suggested that we look at Altro XpressLay as it can be laid straight to slab with no DPM and no fixing joints – creating a huge time and cost saving for the project. We were now confident we had a product that could meet this specific need.

“In addition to the main ‘street’, we specified Altro XpressLay for the break-out areas within each of the school’s blocks that come off the main street. We used a variety of different wedge-shaped colours of the product to delineate different areas. It looks very striking.-

“We also specified the product for corridors, some classrooms, and in the toilets and changing rooms in conjunction with Altro Walkway™ 20, which shares the same colour palette.”

Altro XpressLay is the world’s first adhesive-free, truly sustainable safety floor. It is installed using a tape system instead of adhesive, so can be installed without a surface DPM. It can be easily removed post-installation, re-used elsewhere and then at the end of its life be recycled.

The range boasts 41 colours, featuring bright and subtle, sparkle-free designs and decorative chipped options to give you a huge selection to choose from. Its shared colour palette with Altro Walkway 20 enables you to combine use of both ranges to suit the application. Altro Easyclean Maxis PUR™ Technology ensures the product stays look good long-term.

Like all Altro safety flooring products, Altro XpressLay offers sustained slip resistance for the lifetime of the product, keeping your risk of a slip or fall to just 1 in a million.

The Altro products at St Teilo’s were installed by CS Flooring, in Cardiff. Owner Anthony Mynett said: “This was the biggest Altro XpressLay installation we have ever done, at 6,250m2. It was a perfect example of how the product can be used to cut costs and accelerate a building programme without sacrificing quality, longevity or aesthetics.”

Anthony Mynett continued: “The beauty of installing Altro XpressLay is that it needs no adhesive, just its own weight alone, plus some strategically placed fixing tape. It’s quick, easy and clean. This means we saved days on the installation – probably cutting it by half. The entire process took us just 12 weeks.


“An added bonus with this product is that individual sections can easily be lifted and replaced if required, rather than having to take up the whole floor and re-adhere. There were some sceptics who didn’t believe that the product would be suitable for this application, but they have been proved wrong.”

CS Flooring also installed Altro DesignerTM 25 safety flooring and Altro Whiterock SatinsTM hygienic wall cladding in the school service and eating areas, using black and red colour schemes to denote raw and cooked food preparation areas.

Altro Designer 25 is a 2.5mm-thick, hard-wearing safety flooring which includes coloured quartz crystals in exciting base colours to enhance any interior scheme. -

Altro Whiterock Satins is a durable, grout-free, water-tight smooth wall cladding system designed for building environments that are required to meet strict hygiene standards. The panels provide a stain resistant, wipe-clean surface with no gaps or cracks for bacteria to hide in. It is extremely impact resistant and ideal for tough areas.

Chris Woodruff, Principal Surveyor at main contractor Willmott Dixon, commented on the use of Altro XpressLay on the St Teilo’s project: “It has proved to be a quality product that saved us time and cost on a project where we were able to provide betterment on the delivery programme.”  


Altro wall cladding used in groundbreaking clinical design

Altro and Mount Vernon 2Altro Whiterock ChameleonTM has been used along with Altro UnityTM 25 safety flooring to create a groundbreaking solution within the new Endoscopy Unit at Mount Vernon Hospital, in Northwood, Middlesex, where infection control and patient wellbeing are paramount considerations.

The new £800,000 Endoscopy Unit has been created to offer the very latest technology within an attractive, relaxing environment. Importantly, the four-bedded ward has been designed to ensure a streamlined journey for patients from admission on to the unit, through to the procedure itself and discharge home. In the existing facility, patients were required to retire to a separate sitting room before being discharged.

Bernard Stilwell Architects designed and managed the project. Bernard Stilwell explains the thinking behind the creation of the new unit. “Our brief was to design a self-contained endoscopy unit where patients could relax, receive treatment and recover in a well-structured journey, all within one ward.

“In a clinical environment the first thought when choosing surface finishes is infection control, yet aesthetics and the patient experience are for us equally important. Ultimately, the wellbeing of patients and staff depends on both a hygienic, easy to clean environment and a visually pleasing design.Altro and Mount Vernon 1

“We have specified Altro safety flooring several times before. Altro Whiterock was a first (for us) and an excellent choice: a good range of colours and the potential for a seamless appearance across a variety of surfaces. It helped us unify the appearance of the interiors, to produce a calm, harmonious, well ordered end result.

“We carried out detailed feasibility studies at the site, consulted with a range of clinicians and on the basis of this we created the design. Typically, clinical equipment and fittings are strong primary colours, often blues and whites, so we selected Altro products to complement this.”

Design challenges included the electric sliding doors to the endoscopy recovery bay. These are glazed with the mechanism built into a steel structure in the walls. The door set also contains a fire shutter, which will drop down in an emergency to protect the unit.

“Keeping infection out of the recovery bay was obviously a key consideration, so the doors had to be easy to clean with as few joints as possible to reduce bacterial invasion, as well as being tough and impact resistant,” explains Bernard Stilwell.

“We wanted to ensure that it complemented the rest of the design and colour scheme of the unit to create an overall cohesive feel. With all these considerations in mind, we decided to completely clad the structure in Altro Whiterock Chameleon.

“Altro recommended one of their specialist installers, Wallclad Floors and Doors Ltd to fabricate and clad the door assembly. This company took our sophisticated 3D model we had produced to detail the design, adapted it to suit their workshop requirements and did a fantastic job throughout, from fabrication to installation.”

Altro Whiterock Chameleon in ‘Slipstream’ and ‘Pure Innocence’ were specified for ‘decorative’ surface treatment of the door surrounds and adjacent walls in the entrance and patient waiting/recovery areas. Altro Whiterock White was used in the cleaning rooms, lobbies and corridors. Using the two products together gave flexibility in design and added another dimension to the overall finish.

Altro Whiterock is a cost-effective sheet extruded from a high quality PVCu polymer. It is easy to clean, impact resistant and grout-free. It meets all current EU Directives on health and hygiene.

Altro Whiterock Chameleon offers vibrant solid colours, or more natural tones, in a high gloss finish, allowing for bold designs or more muted interiors in a variety of customer-facing environments.

Altro Unity 25 safety flooring was also used in the new ward. Like all Altro safety flooring, it offers sustained slip resistance for the lifetime of the product, keeping your risk of a slip to just 1 in a million. Available in 18 plain and chipped modern colours, this heavy duty safety flooring is ideal for locations that need to look good and work hard.

Altro Unity 25 is ideal for healthcare environments where visitor and patient numbers in their thousands, staff in their hundreds, patient trolleys, wheelchairs and wheeled equipment all take their toll on the floor. Altro Unity is 2.5mm thick. That 25% extra thickness makes it more resilient to torque, which passes through the wheels and is partially absorbed by and dissipated through the flooring. Thicker flooring dissipates the energy more effectively, making the flooring less likely to de-bond and providing a smoother journey for patients on trolleys and the staff pushing them.

Altro Unity 25 combines this durability with enhanced aesthetics and unrivalled PUR technology that can reduce cleaning and maintenance costs throughout the product’s life by up to 60%. It also offers enhanced chemical resistance and copes well with moisture and temperature extremes, making it perfect for public walkways that need to work hard under a variety of conditions.

Danny Robinson, director of Wallclad Floors and Doors, explains how his company tackled the challenge of using Altro Whiterock in such an innovative way. “We are known for our specialist joinery, but this project was something we had never done before, so it was a very exciting prospect.

“Our initial task, once we had seen the architectural designs, was to create it through 3D modelling, which took two weeks. This enabled us to see very clearly the practical challenges we faced in fabricating and installing it, and as a result we made a few adjustments to the design to make it feasible.

“We were able to thermoform the material in our workshop offsite. This process heats the Altro Whiterock to a specific temperature, whereby components can then be moulded into the desired shape. So the entire over-cladding for columns, surrounds, lintel, and the working mechanism for the doors and fire shutter was prepared offsite ready for installation. It was essential to keep joins to a minimum to reduce infection on the ward, so we created a sealed finish wherever possible.

“Fabrication in our workshops took two weeks, and then the installation was another week. This was a very complex process, made possible by our 3D modelling system. It is the most difficult job we have ever done, but shows how incredibly versatile Altro Whiterock can be in creating visually stunning designs in healthcare environments where patient safety and hygiene are top priorities.”

Andrew Clark, Deputy Estates Director at Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation, commented on the installation. “The project went very well from start to finish and the Altro floors and walls look great. It was vital for us that patients coming to the new unit would have a positive experience, and that psychologically the environment would reassure them of a positive outcome to their visit.

“In a recent national hospital survey, participants cited ‘light’, ‘air’, ‘space’ and ‘cleanliness’ as the assurances they needed to feel confident in their clinical surroundings. The finish of the Altro floors and walls meets all these criteria because they help to create a light, uncluttered atmosphere and a feeling of space. The overall effect is one of a practical, yet visually appealing clinical environment, where patients can feel comfortable, safe and relaxed.

Andrew Clark continues: “The door set entrance to the unit, which is clad in Altro Whiterock Chameleon, is not only a practical solution to clinical hygiene needs, it’s also a striking feature that works visually to complement the design of the unit and ensure an integrated look. A very innovative solution.

“The staff are very pleased as well and are really proud to work there. They identify with the space and have a real sense of purpose. Cleaning staff find the floors and walls easy to clean.”