Good Report From Tong School For Bagnalls and Crown Paints

With support and involvement from Crown Paints, Bagnalls has successfully completed the decoration of Tong High School, a large multi-cultural school and specialist sports college in Bradford, built as part of the government’s Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme.

Tong School was one of three new schools in the Bradford area to be built under the first phase of a BSF Pathfinder scheme by Educo (a joint venture between Costain and Ferrovial/Agroman) on behalf of the Bradford Local Education Partnership (LEP).

Bagnalls tendered for and secured a comprehensive programme of work at the new school including coating of steelwork, general painting and decorating to ceilings, walls, bulkheads, skirting, floors, handrails, doors, frames and screens throughout the state-of-the-art facilities.

Once the contract had been awarded, Bagnalls and Crown Paints worked together to convince Educo that they would reap benefits by switching away from their premium interior paint specification to Crown Trade Clean Extreme Scrubbable Matt.

Armed with documentation and display boards provided by Crown Paints, Bagnalls presented the features and benefits of Scrubbable Matt to Educo, physically demonstrating the coating’s high resistance to soiling and its true ‘scrub clean’ finish. Having seen the product’s performance at close quarters, and recognising the long term cost savings that could be made by extending redecoration schedules, Educo agreed with Bagnalls that Scrubbable Matt should be used. As a result of the switch, Educo also benefited from lower product costs than they had budgeted for.

In addition to Scrubbable Matt Bagnalls also required Crown Trade Eggshell and Full Gloss and Undercoat, together with several packs of PSB to resolve a range of isolated substrate problems. As there were significant difficulties storing paint supplies safely and securely on the construction site, Crown Paints arranged for daily deliveries to be made on a ‘just-time-basis’ from the two nearby Crown Decorating Centres in Leeds and Bradford.
A dedicated Bagnalls site foreman was appointed and a team of directly employed painters from the Leeds branch was seconded to the project. Considerable flexibility was called for as the number of operatives needed on site fluctuated daily according to the work programme and the areas they were able to access. The team included several of Bagnalls’ apprentices who were all able to gain valuable experience of working on a large construction project, with different trades having to co-operate and complete their tasks alongside each other.

The school was built as an integrated three-storey triangle around a central ‘court’ with a transparent roof. Bagnalls needed to bring in scissor lifts and cherry pickers to access all areas of this lofty atrium.
“Working at heights posed no problems for the team,” commented Project Manager Lee Jones,”All our personnel are kitted out with the correct PPE to undertake their work safely and they’re all used to working with a wide range of access equipment indoors because they’ve undergone rigorous training.”

“Nor did we have any problems whatsoever with the Crown Trade coatings. Our decorators use Crown Trade day in and day out on all sorts of jobs in all types of building and they know they can rely on the consistency, opacity and coverage of all the products in the range. They’re sold on Clean Extreme Scrubbable Matt too and find it very easy to achieve a really good flat matt finish that will put up with endless punishment, even in a heavy traffic environment like a school.

“What did cause problems for us were all the various delays that occurred during the project. We couldn’t gain access to parts of the building when we needed to, as other trades were still working there. We also had to rework a number of areas where damage had occurred, so the schedules were constantly changing.

“As a finishing trade we’re used to this but even so, things got quite stressful towards the end of the project as so much time had been lost due to matters completely outside of our control. However, we accepted a final, very demanding deadline and made a commitment to the client that we would complete the work on time whatever happened. We have a great many directly employed time served painters and decorators in the area and were able to draft in extra resources from our Leeds and Shipley branches at very short notice and get the job finished on time.”

Mick Bracken, Project Manager for Educo commented: “Bagnalls worked really hard and clearly showed their commitment to the project when it was needed. We had deadlines to meet and although these were moved on several occasions, the decorators always managed to accommodate the changes. This was very much appreciated and the company played a key role in delivering such a great new school for Bradford.”

As a direct result of their work, and the standard of finish achieved, Bagnalls has since been awarded further BSF projects which were also completed using Crown Trade Clean Extreme Scrubbable Matt.

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