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Reverberation solution for multi-purpose hall at Thackley Primary School, Bradford

OVERVIEW

Background


Thackley Primary School in Bradford is a well-established suburban school providing education for children aged 3-11. The school’s positive ethos seeks to provide a happy and active environment for learning, with teachers and staff dedicated to working hard to secure the highest educational standards for their pupils.


With more than 450 pupils, the building can become extremely busy during school hours, both in classrooms and communal areas. That was presenting some challenges in terms of acoustics in certain areas of the school, particularly in its multi-use hall which is used for performances, PE lessons and dining.


Problem


Thackley Primary School’s multi-use hall is a large, open plan room which, like many internal environments of this type, features extensive areas of hard, reflective surfaces. When the room was in use, particularly when occupied by a large number of pupils and staff, excessive reverberation and echo was making it an unpleasant acoustic environment.


Head of the School, Annette Patterson, sought to find a solution to these issues and approached Sound Reduction Systems (SRS) given the company’s experience in resolving these types of acoustic problems in schools. At the initial enquiry stage, Annette provided details about the school hall, including dimensions and photographs, from which the SRS technical department was able to model the space using their acoustic software. This enabled the team to propose a provisional solution with a specification and provide a quote.


Once the proposed solution was agreed in principle, an acoustics specialist from SRS visited the school to take detailed measurements and discuss the various options available to arrive at a detailed specification.


Solution


Immediately on receipt of Annette’s request for help addressing this acoustic issue, the SRS team confirmed reverberation was indeed excessive and reducing it would make a huge difference. 


SRS Director, Alex Docherty, commented:


“As soon as I was shown into the hall, it was clear that the acoustic environment was not ideal – the long reverberation time made it difficult to hold a simple conversation between a few people comfortably, let alone when the hall was full of children. It was clear that a treatment using one of our Class A rated Sonata products was required to solve the issue.”


Prior to any improvements, the estimated mid-frequency reverberation time was recorded at (Tmf) 3.57s. This level is considered excessive for a room of this nature. SRS calculated that 75sqm of their decorative Sonata panel absorbers would be required to solve the problem, bringing the reverberation time down to (Tmf) 1.13s.


SRS provided the school with a layout design detailing where the panels would be installed within the hall. The school chose a combination of Suspended Sonata Vario panels and bonded Sonata Aurio panels and SRS were able to despatch their installation team within 2 weeks to fit the absorbers.


Client feedback


“I just wanted to say a huge thank you for the acoustic panels we had fitted. The whole process was great - from making initial contact with you, site survey, and fitting. You were always so helpful and knowledgeable when I contacted you. The wonderful man who came to fit the panels was just lovely! Really professional, friendly and had a high standard and a high quality of fitting.


“The impact of the panels has been simply fantastic! What a difference!!! Lunchtimes are now completely different, assemblies are better and PE lessons are calmer. I have been recommending your company to everyone and playing them my ‘before and after’ videos that I made! Thank you again.”


Head of Thackley Primary School, Annette Patterson.


Products used


  • Suspended Sonata Vario panels
  • Sonata Aurio panels

Products featured in this case study

View all products (24)
Sonata Aurio  - Absorber

Sonata Aurio - Absorber

Sonata Vario - Absorber

Sonata Vario - Absorber

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