Pilkington Activ™ self-cleaning glass has been used in two highly specified conservatories added to residential bungalows at The St. Elizabeth's Centre at Much Hadham, near Bishop's Stortford in East Hertfordshire. One of only two national epilepsy centres caring for people with the severest forms of the condition, St. Elizabeth's occupies part of 65-acres of parkland. Registered with the Department for Education and Skills as a specialist residential school it offers education, care and health support for up to 80 young people in the 5-19 age range who have epilepsy and associated disabilities or significant medical conditions.
Considerable development work has been undertaken in recent years, including the construction of the two bungalows, Elena House and St Gabriels as residences within the grounds of the Centre. Each was recently installed with a large conservatory by Hertford based TFS Conservatories to provide a bright and airy restroom for the summer and a cosy retreat in the winter for the adults in care at the Centre.
The specification criteria for the structures were very precise and demanded the highest performance. To fulfil energy efficiency and low maintenance requirements Pilkington Activ™ Blue, combined with Pilkington K Glass™ were identified as the ideal products for the insulated glass for the roof. Pilkington Activ™ Blue combines the revolutionary benefits of a self-cleaning coating with the solar control performance of a tinted glass, with good light transmission. In summer months, glass with solar control can help prevent help build up by significantly reducing the amount of heat allowed to pass into the conservatory, whilst the Pilkington K Glass™ offers thermal insulation, helping maintain a comfortable temperature throughout the year.
Pilkington K Glass™ was also used for the windows, argon filled to further increase thermal efficiency. All glass, supplied by Morley Glass, was toughened throughout. Eminent white pleated blinds, installed within the insulated glass units, further reduce heat build up in the conservatory to create a comfortable, controllable environment for the residents throughout the year.
Both conservatories had fully to comply with current DDA (Disability Discrimination Act) regulations, including ramped access to the conservatory with level entry and exit for wheelchairs. The structures were also required to integrate well with the host building to provide good aesthetics.
Commenting on the project Paul Edwards, Managing Director of TFS Conservatories, said the job was very fulfilling: “Although the conservatories were relatively conventional in their construction the detailing was crucial to achieve high levels of comfort and usability for the structures. Great care was taken to ensure the highest quality components throughout. In particular this was the perfect application for Pilkington Activ™ Blue, to reduce heat gain during the warmer months whilst ensuring the pristine appearance of the conservatories between greatly extended cleaning intervals.”
Pilkington Activ Blue™ has been a runaway success since its introduction two years ago, fulfilling its dual role of self-cleaning for the difficult to reach conservatory roofs, as well as providing a significant reduction in heat build up.