Bussey & Armstrong first unveiled its plans for the West Park Development in 2000. Its aim was to transform a 115-acre site at Faverdale on the outskirts of Darlington into a mixed-use scheme for the existing and expanding community, including the first new public park in the town for 100 years.
Comprising a mix of apartments, townhouses, cottages and detached properties, West Park also incorporates shops, sports facilities, a school, hospital and public art. The 33 acres of landscaped parkland is connected by walkways, cycle routes and includes a nature reserve.
When completed, the development will include 700 homes. All of the properties have been designed to the highest specification and to reflect the architectural styles seen in the traditional Quakertown of Darlington including the Arts and Crafts movement.
The use of construction materials that improve with age is a key requirement for Bussey & Armstrong as director, Tony Cooper explains: "Throughout the scheme, we are using high quality, natural building materials that reflect our ethos at West Park, including stone, clay and slate.
Installing a sustainable and aesthetic tile on the roof was therefore a priority. We want to ensure that in years to come, the tiles will still look as rich in colour as the day they were installed.
Using a local manufacturer is also an important consideration to help reduce the carbon emissions caused by transportation and ensure that products can be delivered as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The housebuilder selected Sandtoft to supply its Olympus, Cassius and 20/20 clay roof tiles for properties throughout the scheme including apartments in West Park Village and houses in Sans Pareil Square.
The Cassius is a large format thin leading-edge tile and the Olympus a double pantile, which are both interlocking and feature an open gauge design. Approximately 10 tiles are required per square metre of roof which is equivalent to the coverage of the most economical concrete tile.
The 20/20 is an interlocking clay plain tile with a single lap design that provides coverage of approximately 20 tiles per square metre instead of the usual 60 required when using traditional plain tiles.
Manufactured using 100 per cent green electricity, the tiles form part of Sandtofts New Generation range which is designed to significantly reduce installation costs, meet local planning requirements, and provide a colour permanent natural roof within reach of most budgets.
"We were introduced to Sandtofts products through Barclay Roofing, says Tony. We liked the fact that the Cassius and Olympus are large format and could therefore reduce material and labour costs which is obviously a major benefit on a scheme of this size. The open gauge also means complete freedom in setting the batten gauge, so the tiles can be installed as quickly and cost effectively as concrete.
Bussey and Armstrong started using Sandtofts New Generation range during the early stages of the sites development in 2005. The products have proved so successful that the company is continuing to use the tiles throughout West Park. To date, Sandtofts clay tiles have been used on 150 houses and 100 apartments and will be used on a further 200 properties by the time the development is finished.
Tony continues: West Park is a unique community village that offers the highest quality facilities and aims to be as environmentally and socially sustainable as possible. Our suppliers all play a major role in this objective, so its vital that we work with companies that share our ethos and can deliver to the standards we expect.
Sandtofts New Generation clay tiles have enabled us to differentiate our homes from our competition, ensuring natural and aesthetic roofs that wont fade and look fantastic.
The growing West Park development is due to be completed by 2015/6 and has already won several national awards, including a Local Government Chronicle (LGC) Sustainable Communities Award and a Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) Gold Award for Regeneration.