Walford College

Client: Walford College
Architect: Mark Newall
Type of works: Rockfon Koral stone wool ceiling tiles installed at award-winning environmental college.

As winner of the prestigious 2006 Charter Mark, Walford College is an example of an institution that reinforces methods which will maintain high standards. Proving that education should not just be an inflexible and industrial space, the college’s latest installation of Rockfon’s Koral stone wool ceiling tiles is of no exception. Spanning an impressive 1,000m2 of the 514 acre estate, the product was selected not only for its durable nature, and 100% dimensional stability, but also its highest-quality acoustic properties.

Architect Mark Newall, who has collaboratively won several design awards with company Baart Harries Newall, chose Rockfon’s Koral Teg product, as a match for his expertise and preference for high quality. "There are now very stringent requirements for acoustic design of schools, and we know that the use of Rockfon ceiling tiles can take care of the reverberation issues", he explains. "The college required a system that would be able to cope with high ambient temperatures, without being affected by moisture. Good levels of sound absorption were also required due to the tiles being installed in a teaching environment. Rockfon was therefore ideal."

In a dynamic and driven learning environment, this is a significant advantage for students who undertake a range of activities throughout their demanding courses, which include equine studies, agricultural engineering and a range of highly technical trade-based courses.

Unbeknown to the students, this plays a significant role in aiding their learning, as it harmonises the environment while simultaneously making it a clear and communicative area. The sense of space is intensified due to their White colour, diffuser light-reflective surface, and subtly matt texture, while the ISO Class A sound absorption ensures echoes or sound distortions are eliminated from teaching areas.

The college, which has also won the Investor in People and Investor in Careers Awards, is well known for its vast opportunities for study in agriculture and environmental management, with a high success and employment rate. In compliance with its "green" approach, which includes energy conservation systems such as a wind turbine generator and a biomass boiler, the building is a winner of the RICS award for sustainability, making Koral Teg a fitting and valuable attribute to the college.

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