Glasshouse at RHS Wisley, Surrey

Glasshouse at RHS Wisley, Surrey

Client: Royal Horticultural Society
Type of works:Tarkett's Veneto xf and Safetred Universal PU floorcoverings were installed throughout the staff and education facilities.

On 26th June 2007, Her Majesty The Queen and HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, officially opened the new Glasshouse at RHS Wisley in Surrey, which has been built to celebrate the RHS bicentenary. The Glasshouse has been built to the highest specification, using the most up-to-date technological advances that have been made in structural design, including the use of 3 x 2m curved sheets of tempered glass to allow maximum light transmission, greater strength, wind resistance and thermal efficiency. The new cathedral-like glass structure is the size of 10 tennis courts and is 12m high, will house their internationally renowned tender plant collection and has Tarkett floorcoverings fitted throughout its staff and education facilities.

Commenting on the newly installed flooring, Gillian Strong, Bicentenary Glasshouse Assistant Project Manager said: 'We chose Tarkett flooring because of its history in the production of flooring as well as its Floorcraft service which allowed us to create a bespoke design in one of the classroom’s within our new dedicated and flexible learning centre.'  

The glasshouse, which marks a new chapter in horticultural excellence with lifelong learning at its heart, has Tarkett’s Linoleum Veneto xf, which marks a new chapter in sustainable flooring, fitted in its new-dedicated learning space, called “The Clore Learning Centre”.  There is growing interest in linoleum because it is extremely hardwearing and can demonstrate good environmental credentials, which was key to its specification at the new Glasshouse. 

Whilst Tarkett has been producing linoleum for more than 100 years, Veneto xf is a new generation linoleum which receives an A rating in BRE’s Green Guide to Specification.  It offers very good overall performance, has a superior indentation profile making it a lot more durable and resistant to cigarette burns. It also has a new surface treatment called X-treme Finish (xf) that reduces cleaning and maintenance for linoleum dramatically.  The new surface protection offers not only resistance against abrasion, stains and chemicals, but also allows for a reduction of maintenance costs by up to 30%.  No initial wax or polish is required upon installation and in the long term savings of up to 50%  can be achieved in the ongoing maintenance resource requirements for water, detergents and energy.  Veneto Linoleum xf also offers a wide colour palette, which makes it incredibly versatile for many settings.

Throughout the Learning Space a creative leaf design motif was incorporated into the Veneto xf flooring.  The design was produced using Tarkett’s Floorcraft service and its creative facility for bespoke flooring design.  Working with the architect and client an initial brief was developed for the look and size of the leaf pattern. Computerised detailed design proposals were then approved and detailed floor plans produced. The Floorcraft service offers designers and architects unlimited scope to develop individual flooring concepts or themes to enliven any interior.  However complex the scheme, each piece is cut precisely using computer-controlled sonic cutting technology for perfect fit on site.

Safetred Universal PU, a slip-resistant heavy-duty floorcovering, was the ideal choice for the new changing rooms where safety underfoot is a priority.  The new surface emboss not only contributes to the performance but gives a modern appearance which was important for this striking glass construction.  Safetred Universal PU also has a R10 slip resistance rating enhanced by the inclusion of silicon carbide, graphite and flint granules that provide both slip resistant properties throughout the product life and a pleasing visual effect.

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