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Engineering the future with Vandersanden bricks

Engineering the future with Vandersanden bricks

Vandersanden Brick

Unrivalled in scale in the UK as a hub of engineering and material science expertise, the new Manchester Engineering Campus Development (MECD) embraces the refurbished, Grade II listed Oddfellows Hall, the MEC Hall and buildings on Upper Brook Street and York Street. Brick played a crucial role in creating the campus and, to find the perfect products to fulfil their aesthetic vision, the architects turned to Vandersanden.The new campus is one of the largest construction projects undertaken by any higher education institution in the UK. It will allow 1,300 staff and 7,000 students to work and study in spaces that enable connection, collaboration and concentration across the faculty.Working with Mecanoo, Penoyre & Prasad and Balfour Beatty Construction, BDP provided detailed design consultation services for the entire MECD project. The collaborative team completed the sensitive renovation and extension of Oddfellows Hall to accommodate a suite of conference rooms, academic workspaces and a restaurant.Originally built in 1857 and rebuilt in 1916, Oddfellows Hall anchors the new MECD to its formative past. Set back on the north side from the listed building, the modern extension presents a neat facade where Vandersanden’s Berit water-struck facing brick, which is white with a light texture, is coupled with areas of glazing and tile. “The approach to the scheme has been to add a twenty-first-century building of its time but in continuity with the existing language, using materials such as brick and glass,” explains Paul Owen, architect associate at BDP.Configured horizontally, the elements wrap around the façade of the extension to create a strong connection to both the north and south facades of the older building. The aesthetic is enhanced further by a combination of narrow brick piers and vertically proportioned windows. A defined brick plinth at ground floor level achieves additional visual interconnection between the old and the new.On the roof, the plant enclosure uses the same Vandersanden Berit brick as the façade, but the structure is set back from the parapet line. A hit and miss pattern allows for ventilation of the mechanical and electrical equipment inside as an elegant alternative to standard ventilation grilles.On Upper Brook Street and York Street, the new buildings are of solid brick that includes feature brick vertical and horizontal elements to articulate the façade and frame the window openings. Again, the brick is from Vandersanden; in this case, the company's Herning water struck brick with a dark brown-purple-blue multi-coloured appearance.“The technical advice the team at Vandersanden gave was incredibly helpful while the bricks offer great visual appeal. In the long term, they will age gracefully in combination with the existing material of Oddfellows Hall, ensuring the new extension sits well in its context,” says Paul Owen.For more information on the development go to https://www.mub.eps.manchester.ac.uk/science-engineering. For details on BDP visit, www.bdp.com and to find out more on Berit, Herning and the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, visit Together we build greatness | Vandersanden
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Vandersanden bricks provide superior finish at the quarters

Vandersanden bricks provide superior finish at the quarters

Vandersanden Brick

At the heart of Manadon Park, the site of the Royal Navy's former Engineering College, The Quarters is a development of 85 homes by Burrington Estates on the outskirts of Plymouth, in Devon. Although blending harmoniously, subtle differences have been introduced to each of the homes and 40 plots feature elevational treatments in Vandersanden’s Roxton and Corum multi-coloured bricks.Burrington Estates has established a reputation for building high-quality, design-led homes in the West Country. Completed in late 2020, The Quarters enjoys a peaceful ambience with mature trees creating a leafy vista. Energy efficiency is at the forefront of the scheme: the homes benefit from smart central heating, high-performance windows, excellent insulation levels and integrated PV panels to selected plots. Externally, The Quarters has a contemporary feel with classical elements. Stone detailing is incorporated within the red or buff brick elevations of some homes; others have creamy, rendered facades brought alive with features such as brick cills and brick arched window heads. Extended brick plinths further define the aesthetic.The scheme’s design was inherited by Burrington Estates at the planning stage, explains Steve Fowler, the company’s technical director. “The consented scheme included brick treatments to certain plots. In line with our core values as a business, we wanted a brick which was superior in finish to a run of the mill ‘standard’ brick typically used by more mainstream developers”.Vandersanden’s Roxton and Corum bricks are both stock facing bricks with sanded-coated and creased structures that are ideally suited to residential schemes. Roxton offers an attractive, orangey-red, multi-coloured aesthetic for an authentic, timeless look. The yellow buff base colour of Corum is augmented by shades of grey to create a varied, multi-coloured and high-quality textured appearance.“The Vandersanden bricks provided the perfect aesthetic and finish for the homes at The Quarters and were superior to alternatives on offer at the time of specification,” explains Steve Fowler. “The finished product looks good and works well with other elevation treatments used on the development.”To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link
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Vandersanden bricks help create a striking educational superblock

Vandersanden bricks help create a striking educational superblock

Vandersanden Brick

Setting an aesthetic benchmark at the heart of the regeneration of London’s Royal Docks, Oasis Academy Silvertown is a new Department for Education school created by architects Rivington Street Studio. The landmark building serves 11-16 year olds and achieves a BREEAM ‘Excellent' rating while its striking appearance owes much to the use of Vandersanden’s Perla bricks.At the heart of an emerging community in West Silvertown, the Oasis Academy is an all-inclusive secondary school for 600 students on a constrained .25-hectare site. Arranged as a multi-storey ‘superblock’, the building incorporates outdoor social space at different levels and a full-sized sports pitch on its roof.The warm white Perla brickwork and large openings relate to the existing and new residential properties and the monumental listed Silo D nearby. The building’s thick external walls are folded to provide a layered façade in response to the elements. A double-height colonnade to the North Woolwich Road acts as a visitor entrance and engenders a civic quality to the building while also allowing for generous pedestrian movement and a deep threshold between the public domain and secure school environment.The site is surrounded by a mix of red brick residential properties, derelict industrial land and vast stretches of master-planned residential and commercial properties. “We wanted the Academy to stand out from this landscape,” explains Éimear Murphy, associate director at Rivington Street Studio. “Vandersanden’s white Perla bricks give the building a monumental quality, highlighting that it’s for the community and is not an apartment block.”Taylor Maxwell, the brick supplier, suggested Vandersanden’s Perla brick for the project. “What we really liked about Perla is that it’s not only a white brick, with no variation in the colour, but it has quite a rustic, handmade texture that gives it a warm feel rather than a shiny and engineered surface finish,” says Murphy. There were various challenges to creating the brickwork details. The sharp angles associated with the brick fins on the side elevations meant there were a lot of brick specials so these were scheduled with plans drawn through the fins at every other course at the different levels. The contractor then cut the bricks to the schedule. This was made possible because the Perla bricks are exactly the same colour all the way through. For the canted reveals of the double-height colonnade to the main elevation, brick slip panels were used. Rivington Street Studio worked with the brick subcontractor to develop a bespoke detail and different mock-ups were trialled. The brick slips are seamless in appearance, matching with the full bricks used elsewhere. The canted reveals to the windows on the south elevation were envisioned through extensive 3D modelling and the Perla bricks again proved highly versatile during construction.To achieve a homogenous feel to the building, the mortar was matched to the brick. From a distance, the structure resembles a white cube but, as you get closer, the surface detail of the mortar joints and brick texture starts appearing. At different times of the day, the building’s appearance changes as patterns of light and shade move across the texture of the bricks. "The Vandersanden bricks are incredibly high quality and the through colour simplified the construction process because the bricks could simply be cut to suit the building’s geometry, enthuses Murphy. “Another important factor was the excellent consistency of the batches as this was essential to achieving the building’s monolithic, one-colour look.” To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' linkProject photography Simon Kennedy & Rachel Ferriman
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Protect the building aesthetic with coated hand-formed bricks

Protect the building aesthetic with coated hand-formed bricks

Vandersanden Brick

Over time bricks can discolour and lose their lustre because of the impact of wet weather, air pollution or efflorescence. The result can have a detrimental effect on a building’s visual aesthetic, compromising the architect’s design vision and reducing the value of the property for the owner. Brick manufacturer, Vandersanden is the first company to develop a viable, large scale coating solution to provide superior protection against efflorescence as well as secondary protection against the effects of pollution.Vandersanden’s automated coating formulation makes facing bricks water-repellent and resistant to the effects of air pollution and efflorescence, ensuring façades remain beautiful and untarnished throughout their lifetime. This innovative and environmentally sustainable process which also makes it easier to clean the brick, if dirt or damage does occur, has now been fully rolled out across the entire Vandersanden hand-formed brick range available to UK specifiers.Vandersanden worked with Belgian University, KU Leuven, to develop the solution which treats bricks with a special coating after the firing process. The process penetrates to a depth from 5mm to 15mm whilst retaining the original colour of the brick.The liquids contain no harmful substances or chemicals that can damage the brick or the environment and is automatically applied at Vandersanden’s manufacturing facilities in Belgium and The Netherlands.A coated brick has exactly the same pore structure as a non-coated brick and the number of pores and their size remain the same. However, as the walls of the pores are covered with a water-repellent layer, the water droplets are no longer attracted to the walls and will not be absorbed. As the pores remain open, the bricks also retain their resistance to frost.Applying the coating during the production process, eliminates the need to coat the bricks with an applicator once they have been installed, which is a highly specialised and expensive process. It also reduces the often laborious and costly task of prepping the facade for a coating and the regular maintenance required.“Creating beautiful facades that will stand the test of time remains crucial for Vandersanden,” says Jean-Pierre Wuytack, CEO at Vandersanden. "Thanks to our commitment to innovation in product design and manufacturing, we can ensure a lifetime of colour-safe brick performance for architects and their clients. We are proud of our coated solution which demonstrates how Vandersanden is the natural partner for architects who care passionately about creating the very best, most long-lasting aesthetic for their buildings.”Vandersanden coated bricks come with a 25-year guarantee and the company has worked hard to ensure these bricks can be delivered at the same cost as non-coated bricks.Vandersanden produces a vast array of high-quality bricks in different finishes and colours, ranging from reds and browns, to greys, creams and buffs that will inspire and enable the design and construction of beautiful buildings.To find out more, register for our RIBA approved CPD #2 "How to avoid brick stains and efflorescence" here CPD – Continuing Professional Development | Vandersanden
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Contemporary retirement living enhanced with Vandersanden brick slips

Contemporary retirement living enhanced with Vandersanden brick slips

Vandersanden Brick

Woodlands is a high-quality retirement scheme of 17 luxury apartments by PegasusLife, now part of Lifestory, in exclusive Canford Cliffs, Dorset. Designed by Snug Architects, the building’s striking, contemporary form is crafted to include a carefully specified combination of whitewashed, vertical timber cladding, glazed balconies, bronze-coloured windows and white Antro facing brick slips from leading brick innovator, Vandersanden. “It was the team at PegasusLife that first suggested using Vandersanden brick slips,” explains Mike Worthington, director at Snug Architects. “The very stylish Antro brick complements the whitewashed timber cladding and the bronze metal colour of the windows very well to provide an incredibly mature material palette.” Within walking distance of the beach, Woodlands stands on Flaghead Road amongst age-old pines. The building’s architecture was inspired by its setting and, although bold and contemporary, relates harmoniously to the scale of the surrounding housing. The structure was conceived as a three-storey modern brick envelope with a basement car park that has lift access. Woodlands was built using a reinforced concrete frame construction. Instead of traditional brickwork, Gebrik Brick Cladding Panels featuring Vandersanden’s Antro brick slips were supplied by Aquarian Cladding for the project. These were constructed off-site and installed straight onto the building frame. By using Gebrik panels, the aesthetics of the building were maintained as originally designed while minimising on-site works. A further advantage was that the build programme was more efficient than with traditional construction as the building was watertight more quickly, so interior spaces could be fitted out in tandem with work to the exterior. To complete the facade, Antro brick pistols and splayed/canted brick specials were employed with the bricks wrapped underneath the soffit of window and balcony openings. Vandersanden’s Antro stock facing bricks have a sanded-coated and creased structure. They are a mix of different kinds of clay forms and made with 100% natural resources; the loam that forms the most important base material dates from the Ice Age. By using specific sand types for the surface covering, the desired colour is achieved. Mike Worthington says: “The Vandersanden bricks are good quality and provided the basis for a beautiful and mature materiality for this retirement living development which we were delighted with. They’ve weathered very well and we’re regularly complimented on the scheme and asked who supplied the bricks. We’re very proud of it.” Canford Cliffs is an affluent suburb of Poole with a significant population of retired people. PegasusLife is a retirement living provider on a mission to fundamentally re-think retirement living in the UK. Unsurprisingly, Woodlands was shortlisted for the 2017 RIBA South West Awards. Further details on Snug Architects are available at https://www.snugarchitects.co.uk. To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Cocoa Studios’ style defined by Vandersanden’s Herning brick

Cocoa Studios’ style defined by Vandersanden’s Herning brick

Vandersanden Brick

Cocoa Studios is a new commercial building at the heart of The Biscuit Factory, a bustling business centre on the former Peek Freans Biscuit Town site in Bermondsey, London. Architectural practice Allford Hall Monaghan Morris’s (AHMM) approach to the scheme referenced the historic warehouses of the area: narrow proportioned brick buildings with large-recessed openings and fine detailing. To achieve this design vision, Vandersanden’s 65mm Herning facing brick was chosen as an integral element of the building’s design.For 123 years, biscuits, such as the Garibaldi and the Bourbon, were manufactured in the Victorian factories on the site, which now consists of new build and refurbished buildings occupied by start-up businesses and small and medium enterprise businesses. The six-storey Cocoa Studios is L-shaped in plan and adjoins an existing building, completing an urban block and providing a new landscaped courtyard at its centre.AHMM examined the various options for the facade with building materials distributor EH Smith to ensure colour and texture requirements were met; it was also essential that the brick worked with a smaller than usual joint profile of 7.5mm. To achieve the batching measurements required when setting the building out, Vandersanden produced the bricks in a single firing to ensure the best possible consistency from the clay product.“We chose Vandersanden’s Herning brick because of its texture and variety of tones and colours. These complement its context while bringing its own distinct identity, helping add variety, interest and joy to the simple, well-proportioned volumes of the building,” explains Lon Luc, senior architect at AHMM. “The richness and depth of the appearance of the brick are especially apparent on the larger double height expanses of brick within the entrance hall interior that helps to emphasise the delightfulness of the space.”The dark brown-purple-blue multi-coloured Herning bricks define the building’s facade which is divided by deep vertical slots into a series of wide brick bays that follow the rhythm of the connected buildings. Within these slots are expansive window openings that are a minimum of one and a half bricks deep, with the heads and cill units produced using specials. The ground and first floor levels are delineated with a hand-laid, expressed brick-bond of soldiers, alternated with flush and projecting headers on a single course that are then stack bonded. From the second floor up, an uncomplicated stretcher bond emphasises the solidity and proportions of the bays; a recessed mortar joint adds a further delicate grain.“The facade detailing subtlety echoes the variety of brick patterns of the neighbouring Victorian architecture and follows the care and attention to detail of Peek Freans’ original design and engineering in a contemporary manner,” explains Lon Luc. “Every detail was carefully co-ordinated with the brickwork contractor, Grangewood Brickwork Services, and Vandersanden, along with EH Smith; the process included several pre-production visits to Vandersanden’s factory. The brick's quality, appearance and versatility contributed greatly to the aesthetic success of the project.”To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Cohousing scheme sets the new Cambridge vernacular with Vandersanden bricks

Cohousing scheme sets the new Cambridge vernacular with Vandersanden bricks

Vandersanden Brick

An award winning, 42-home cohousing development in Orchard Park, Cambridge, Marmalade Lane is recognised as a leading example of best practice. To bring the scheme to fruition, TOWN, with its partner Trivselhus and supported by Mole Architects, was selected as the preferred developer by Cambridge City Council and Cambridge Cohousing. Much of the scheme’s aesthetic appeal is due to the use of three Vandersanden bricks: Majestic, Nevado Grey and Old Windsor. Cohousing is a mutually supportive form of living that is well-established in northern European countries and which is gaining in popularity in the UK. At Marmalade Lane, in addition to self-contained, privately-owned terraced and apartment homes, the community shares many spaces and facilities. These include a ‘Common House’ at the centre of the development and a car-free street that is the social heart of the scheme – a place for people to socialise and for children to play.  Marmalade Lane is one of the largest examples of group custom build in the UK so developers TOWN and Mole Architects worked closely with the future residents through a process of co-design from the start. “With a menu-based approach to dwelling customisation, purchasers were able to select their chosen brick colour from the palette of the three Vandersanden bricks plus the option of a white painted brick facade,” explains Meredith Bowles, director at Mole Architects. “Giving residents who committed to live in Marmalade Lane early on, a choice of the brick facing used for their homes was important," believes Neil Murphy, founding director of TOWN. “It has both endowed the place with a strong sense of ownership and has created a streetscape that echoes the ordinary historic Cambridge streets with their patina of age. The choice of Vandersanden bricks, with their good texture and colour, really brings the scheme to life.” Although Marmalade Lane is on the periphery of Cambridge, the aim was to give the scheme a quality that is found in the brick colours of the attractive streets in the middle of the city. Over time the bricks of the old houses have become sooted so the palette includes a kind of sooty grey hue, the more striking pale yellow of Georgian homes and also the red brick from the Victorian terraces; there are also a reasonable proportion of buildings where people have painted the bricks. Essentially, Marmalade Lane is a concentrated version of this collective vision. Bowles believes the choice of brick at Marmalade Lane perfectly complements this vision. “It seems to have become a Cambridge style with new developments all around now using the same mix of hues. Vandersanden’s Majestic, Nevado Grey and Old Windsor provide the ideal range of colours and offer the quality and textures that perfectly echo the vernacular. “There is a challenge in Cambridge because the planners are keen that things are built to match the local bricks but these aren’t being made anymore. The brick factor we used introduced us to Vandersanden by providing samples of the company’s bricks that showed us a lot of possibilities. These perfectly fitted the local vernacular, the overall aesthetic and the budget. It’s usually particularly tricky to find suitable grey bricks because they’re mostly double fired, so they cost, more but Vandersanden had what we needed at an affordable price,” says Bowles. The brickwork at Marmalade Lane is comparatively simple, the one exception being a few bands of projecting headers that create stripes of shadow as the sun moves across the facade of one of the apartment buildings at the corner of the site. Two mortar colours were employed with a dark mortar for the Nevado Grey bricks and a lighter, sandier colour for the Majestic and Old Windsor bricks. The Nevado Grey bricks have been employed to bring cohesion to many of the key elements of the scheme, including the flat roofed structures that house the air source heat pumps at the front of each house, the bicycle and bins stores as well as the Common House. Bowles is enthusiastic about the Vandersanden product. “It’s terrific and quite unusual to find one company with such a strong and varied range of characterful bricks. Part of the scheme’s success was finding bricks that worked and had lots of character within a reasonably modest budget. There is something special about the surface texture, patination, irregularity and the sense of liveliness that the Vandersanden bricks offer. They evoke a handmade quality found in older bricks that makes them much more attractive than so many of the bricks made today.”To find out more about the bricks used in this project or see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link.  
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Bastion House stands out thanks to Lima bricks from Vandersanden

Bastion House stands out thanks to Lima bricks from Vandersanden

Vandersanden Brick

An imposing boutique scheme of nine luxury apartments in Hackney, London, Bastion House is a modern take on a castle-like structure with its multi-faceted walls, tiered form and variously sized openings. The choice of Vandersandan’s Lima facing brick enhances this robust look while the brick’s light colour contrasts with the black mortar joints and recessed jet-black window frames and balcony soffits. Bastion House is built on the site of a two-storey, post-war house on Farleigh Road in a predominantly residential area that includes a variety of architectural styles and a range of building heights. The new building is five storeys in total but its scale and massing are carefully considered, stepping back at both third and fourth floor levels in response to the surrounding built form, while also ensuring that the crown of a street tree, immediately to the west of the site, remains unaffected. Creative brickworkGoldrose Sharpe, the developers of Bastion House, embraced the challenge of carefully detailing the brickwork which, along with the building’s unconventional form, helps it stand out. Specially cut bricks were employed to achieve the different angled corners - most corners of the building are not at a right angle. Brick soffit panels were designed to surround the balcony openings along with brick-faced lintels to create depth to the set-back windows. Relief panels employing a different brickwork pattern were also introduced at various points across the facades. When selecting the bricks for the project, the team at Goldrose Sharpe ordered samples from various brick suppliers. “We were exploring our options with light coloured bricks,” explains Maria Patton, project lead at Goldrose Sharpe. “The Lima bricks have this artisanal, handmade texture which is quite unique; they stood out compared to other brick samples.” The Lima is a stock brick consisting of a mix of different clays with a white base colour, grey accents and a sanded-coated and grained structure.Goldrose Sharpe purchased the bricks directly from Vandersanden.“Vandersanden was always very helpful with its customer service and the team there was good at explaining the technicalities of the brick,” says Maria Patton. “We had to send the bricks to be specially cut and made for the special angles and brick-faced soffits and lintels. They worked well to these variations.”An impactful facadeThe Lima bricks and the impressive detailing ensure Bastion House makes a bold statement. “We often notice people who walk past the building touch the walls out of curiosity,” notes Maria Patton. “We’re very happy with the final result and the overall look of the brickwork. The use of the Lima bricks made a real difference to the building’s appearance.”To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link
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Hobhouse Court: Realising Ambitious Brick Façades

Hobhouse Court: Realising Ambitious Brick Façades

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

Michelmersh’s Charnwood factory speciality is producing handmade bricks in bespoke blends with matching special shapes, all made by expert craftsmen. As the project developed and evolved it concluded with 20 bays, with varying angles on plain and face folds requiring 1400 different mould types to form the wide array of bespoke special bricks, all of which were to be intricately made from plan. Brick distributor EHSmith felt that Charnwood was the only manufacturer capable of achieving excellent results due to its production team’s knowledge, understanding, experience, dedication and flexibility.
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Greenbuilt Homes specifies Vandersanden Bricks for contemporary Derby properties

Greenbuilt Homes specifies Vandersanden Bricks for contemporary Derby properties

Vandersanden Brick

Overlooking the 4,000 gently rolling acres of the historic Kedleston Estate in Derbyshire, the two five-bedroom houses by Greenbuilt Homes are strikingly contemporary in their design. Key to their success is the careful specification of materials, with Vandersanden’s Lithium hand-formed, facing bricks creating facades with an appealing softness, unity and colour. Greenbuilt Homes has gained a competitive edge through well-conceived architecture, high specification and the use of quality materials. The houses on Kedleston Road, are super energy efficient and won Best Small New Housing Development at the LABC East Midlands Building Excellence Awards 2019.To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Fletcher Crane architects chooses Vandersanden brick for Tree House development

Fletcher Crane architects chooses Vandersanden brick for Tree House development

Vandersanden Brick

Award-winning Surrey-based firm, Fletcher Crane Architects, has specified Vandersanden’s 65mm Antro facing brick for interiors and exteriors at Tree House, an impressive, new, contemporary home in Ealing, West London. Located in a conservation area and constructed on a 12 x 12m former garage site, bounded by rear gardens, Tree House is a two-bedroom property that stands assertively against the characterful and repetitive villas in the street. Fletcher Crane has designed the home as an articulated series of volumes in a split-level arrangement of rooms around a central spine. The kitchen and living room sit on the upper storeys to make the most of natural daylight while the two bedrooms are submerged within semi-sunken floors.Boldly deployed and celebrated for the texture, variation and interest they provide, Tree House’s components are a fundamental part of the Fletcher Crane vision. Inside and outside the home, extensive use is made of three principal materials to create a naturally appealing, raw palette of black ash timber, tubular metalwork and multi-coloured Antro brick from Vandersanden.The load bearing Antro brickwork is exposed and flush-jointed with traditional lime mortar to create a unifying, almost monolithic appearance. ‘Baubuche’ structural timber joists span the brick structure, while, in the basement, the in-situ concrete frame is left bare. The central staircase is encased in ash timber panelling which is set against more curved Antro brickwork and sharp metal balustrades. Outside a sunken planted courtyard is accessed using stepped Antro brick planters and a paddle stair constructed of black cobble setts.“We like the texture, the tones and the variety that the Antro brick gives us at Tree House,” says Harry Reid, Architect at Fletcher Crane Architects. “Vandersanden offers a significant range of these light multi-coloured bricks, both in white and grey hues which are very attractive for this type of project. The company supplied us with a number of sample options for comparison and contrast, and we duly selected Antro as our brick of choice. We’re delighted with it, particularly in how the Antro brick combines with the lime mortar, and other components at Tree House to create the overall feeling of an intimate yet generous home that’s filled with light and rich in materials.”Antro is created from a combination of different clay forms which yield a grey base colour, then coated with specific sand types to bring a grained, creased texture to the brick. The clay structure evokes darker and lighter tones out of the base grey along with shades of white in the overall final appearance.For more information on Fletcher Crane Architects go to https://www.fletchercranearchitects.com/. To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' linkCredit: Photography by Lorenzo Zandri © 2021
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Cast iron air bricks and mesh - a solution at last

Cast iron air bricks and mesh - a solution at last

Cast Iron Air Brick Company

Flymesh and cast iron air bricks, up till now, Installers have either pushed the mesh into the back of the air brick from inside - never to be cleaned again - or meshed over the air brick and held it in place with silicon - never to be removed again. Which is why we invented the cast iron flyscreen airbrick with removable copper mesh. It solved a problem faced by Galliford Try, constructing the athletes village for London 2012 Olympics when they needed feature vents for kitchen extraction to enhance their clay bricked homes. Discover how they work...
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The Nest - Timpson

The Nest - Timpson

Marshalls Bricks & Masonry

PROJECTED BRICK DETAILING USING MARSHALLS CONCRETE BRICKS FORMS THE CONTEMPORARY ARCHITECTURAL FOCUS OF THE TIMPSON UNIVERCITY.The retail service provider group’s new training centre near its head office in South Manchester.Designed by the Manchester office of award-winning architect practice tp bennett, the purpose of the new state-of-the-art building, known as The Nest, is to host training to 500 staff a year, including ex-offenders and those on day release.“We wanted to create the best training facility in the UK; a welcoming and comfortable building that inspires people to be their best within an environment that is fun, calm, spacious and collegiate,” explains Timpson Facilities Manager, Natasha Nelson.The single-storey, 9,258 sq foot brick-built building comprises a boardroom, training and meeting rooms as well as a breakout space and garden area. Originally, the project architect, whose intent was to add architectural interest using a projected brickwork technique, specified a white clay brick, externally.Working alongside the architect and main contractor John Turner Construction, brick expert and LBT Brick & Facades Ltd Commercial Manager Steven Leggott, specified Marshalls Castleton Stock facing bricks, he explains: “Originally the architect was looking to specify a white clay brick. I proposed some alternative options and the Castleton Stock brick came out as the preferred choice. It provided a competitive clay alternative – it’s a concrete brick that met both aesthetic and technical requirements.”THIS BRICKWORK DETAIL PROVIDES THE PERFECT BACKDROP TO THE BUILDING’S SIMPLE YET EFFECTIVE SIGNAGE.Running the full length of the entrance façade, Marshalls Castleton Stock facing bricks add texture and relief. The bricks have been laid using a natural mortar to create a projected pattern from the ground up to a two-third height, with the bricks protruding 20mm. This brickwork detail provides the perfect backdrop to the building’s simple yet effective signage.The Castleton Stock facing brick is part of the Marshalls frogged, contemporary range. With an industrial chic feel and a smooth face, it works well when creating modern designs.TIMPSON UNIVERCITY SITE HAS SAVED 12.4 TONNES OF CARBON.What’s more, this particular brick is Green Guide rated A+, as Marshalls concrete bricks have significantly less embodied carbon than clay bricks – almost 49% less over their whole lifecycle. By selecting the Castleton Stock brick as an alternative to a traditional clay brick, the Timpson UniverCity site has saved 12.4 tonnes of carbon.Commenting on the finished building Timpson Group Facilities Manager Natasha Nelson said: “The building is a huge hit with our colleagues and external clients, from the minute you approach the entrance, the brickwork detail makes such a first impression - setting the professional tone for what’s happening inside!”
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Sherborne Wharf

Sherborne Wharf

Marshalls Bricks & Masonry

AWARD-WINNING DEVELOPER REAPS BENEFITS OF SPECIFYING MARSHALLS FACING BRICKS FOR WATERSIDE APARTMENTS The use of concrete bricks, supplied by Marshalls Bricks & Masonry, contributed to both cost and schedule control during the construction of a premium waterside apartment development in Birmingham as well as providing sustainability benefits too.Located on a former boat yard site adjacent to the famous Old Birmingham Canal, Ultima at Sherborne Wharf is a premium collection of 87 one and two-bedroom apartments in Birmingham city center.Developed and built by Crest Nicholson, the 10-storey new build was originally specified and approved at the planning stage as clay brick, but looking to meet budgetary and availability requirements, the design team approached Marshalls Bricks & Masonry to seek an alternative solution.With stringent planning guidelines to work to, Marshalls recommended a list of cost effective options closest to those already approved, together with physical sample boards for visual review.The design team selected two facing brick options from the Marshalls Sandstock range. This particular range has the appearance of a waterstruck stock brick but with the benefit of dimensional accuracy to ease construction.The preferred options were the Hampton Stock and Waddon Stock, which were submitted to planning and approved. Requiring a quick turnaround, from initial contact to delivery, 341,000 concrete bricks were delivered within just two months by Marshalls.Most of the apartment block features Hampton Stock, an almost buff red brick, created from using more muted tones of red and orange. This particular brick also features the occasional subtle black brick running sporadically throughout, which helps the brickwork tie-in to the building’s powder-coated balconies, windows and doors.Intermittently, between the storeys, the bricks are stacked vertically, adding subtle design detailing to the building.The scheme also benefits from a sustainability perspective. According to available Environmental Product Declarations, concrete bricks have a lower embodied carbon than clay bricks and are 100% recyclable. Embodied carbon refers to the greenhouse gas emissions arising from the extraction, manufacturing and transportation, installation, maintenance and ultimate disposal of materials. Reducing these emissions will be crucial to mitigate the industry’s impact on climate change.Commenting on Marshalls involvement, Julian Lee, Technical Director at Crest Nicholson said “We initially decided to go with facing bricks from the Marshalls Bricks & Masonry range as they enabled us to come within budget while still allowing us to get the colour we wanted for the site. After working with the concrete bricks, we found they worked really well with the added benefit of the sustainability access that comes with them. The Marshalls Bricks & Masonry team came to site to work with us, and the site bricklayers to overcome any questions or concerns. All in all, the building appearance with these bricks finishes well.”
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New CPD series aimed at architects and specifiers launched by brick manufacturer Vandersanden

New CPD series aimed at architects and specifiers launched by brick manufacturer Vandersanden

Vandersanden Brick

Vandersanden have just launched a newly enhanced series of six engaging and informative CPD webinars. The sessions are part of Vandersanden’s portfolio of learning and development tools, aimed at architects and specifiers, to help build their knowledge base and keep them updated on new techniques and innovations in brick manufacturing.Vandersanden’s new CPD webinar series launched on 4th May. The sessions are designed to be concise yet packed with useful information to inspire architects to learn more about the creative design potential of bricks. Mathew Davies, National Specification Manager for Vandersanden comments: “Vandersanden is one of Europe’s most innovative producers of bricks and our CPD modules, many of which are RIBA approved, have already had great feedback from our partners at architectural practices. Following their response, we decided to extend our CPD programme, based on requests for more diverse and in-depth brick topics. We aim to make the sessions as interactive as possible, with plenty of time for live Q&A with team members during, and at the end of each session.”The webinar series consists of six CPD sessions, which go live from 4th May, and will continue on the first Wednesday of every month. The CPD series includes the following:RIBA Certified CPD #1– Brick basicsThis CPD explores the origins and anatomy of brick, as well as covering the main brick types and commonly used configurations and bonding patterns. The CPD also discusses the influence of joints and mortar, accommodating building movement and important considerations when specifying brick.RIBA Certified CPD #2 – How to avoid brick stains and efflorescenceThis CPD explains about the discolouration issues commonly experienced with brickwork facades and the reasons behind the different types of staining that occur. The course then covers the preventative methods that can help avoid this efflorescence and the protective role that innovative coated bricks can play.CPD #3 The brick - From the fundamentals to inspired designAn introduction to the different types of clay brick and the range of sizes, colours, textures and finishes available to help create inspired building design. This CPD reveals some of the key technical considerations and will help attendees learn more about brick as a sustainable building product.CPD #4 The brick - Special techniques & innovationsThis CPD explores some of Vandersanden’s new brick innovations and how different manufacturing techniques are used to deliver their unique range of bricks. The webinar then looks at a number of project examples that demonstrate how these can be applied to create beautifully inspired building designs.RIBA Certified CPD #5 – Textured brickworkThis CPD demonstrates the texture effects that can be achieved when specifying and designing clay brick facades. The webinar explores how texture can be used to enhance building aesthetics and then looks at the main brick types, relevant bonding patterns and technical considerations.RIBA Certified CPD #6 – Movement in brickworkThis CPD shows how to accommodate movement in brickwork, and the possible causes and types of movement. It looks at where to position vertical and horizontal movement joints, and discusses the technical considerations for cavity wall construction in relation to movement joints.Mathew Davies, National Specification Manager for Vandersanden concludes:“Vandersanden is committed to sharing our expertise and providing inspiration that supports our collaboration with architects and specifiers, so this new CPD series will continue to help build our professional partnership community. Look out for our new CPD webinar teaser campaign, which offers a snapshot of what our new CPD series will deliver.”Register for Vandersanden CPDs here CPD – Continuing Professional Development | Vandersanden
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Vandersanden Introduces New RIBA Certified CPD; Brick: Circularity, Sustainability & Innovation

Vandersanden Introduces New RIBA Certified CPD; Brick: Circularity, Sustainability & Innovation

Vandersanden Brick

Brick manufacturer Vandersanden, recognised for its innovation, sustainability and craftsmanship, has announced that its NEW RIBA certified CPD #7 ‘Brick: Circularity, Sustainability & Innovation’ is now available to architects and all construction professionals. This essential new training tool comes under the RIBA core curriculum topics of ‘Design, Construction and Technology’ and ‘Sustainable Architecture’ and is the first RIBA certified CPD seminar focusing on bricks and sustainability.The latest addition to Vandersanden’s portfolio of CPD courses is focused on sustainability in the brick manufacturing sector. Vandersanden’s vision for a more sustainable construction industry is central to the brand’s ambitions, and their innovative ‘Together to Zero’ promise demonstrates the company’s commitment to being completely CO2 neutral by 2050.Mathew Davies, National Specification Manager for Vandersanden comments;“As a brand, we are committed to developing sustainable products, manufacturing processes and services which have a limited impact on the environment. So, we are thrilled to be able to add another highly informative RIBA certified CPD to our seminar series with a focus on sustainability. With the construction industry focused on achieving sustainability targets, this CPD is particularly timely. We hope not only to educate, but to inspire CPD attendees by outlining the path for a more sustainable construction industry, that the sector can achieve together.”This new seminar from Vandersanden is the first RIBA CPD certified seminar in the industry to explore the subject of brick and sustainability in detail. This seminar is designed to educate attendees on the following key topics:The processes involved in brick manufacture and how sustainability is addressed at each stage of production with renewable energy, heat recuperation and other measures.Why the brick industry is reducing use of clay and exploring alternative options such as eco brick slips, an innovation with an abundance of benefits.The end-of-life circularity of bricks and the possibilities for reuse and recycling.The incoming development of Carbon-negative bricks.The available documentation to be referred to when designing sustainable buildings.The importance of industry standards, health and safety, brick supply, management and handling.The CPD seminars from Vandersanden are an ideal opportunity for professionals to develop their knowledge base and strengthen their skill sets. This new RIBA certified CPD is the latest addition to Vandersanden’s portfolio of learning and development tools, aimed at architects and specifiers, helping to enhance their expertise and keep them updated on new trends, techniques and innovations in brick manufacturing.Register for this RIBA certified CPD here CPD – Continuing Professional Development | Vandersanden
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Felce and Guy specifies bricks from Vandersanden for The Spa at South Lodge

Felce and Guy specifies bricks from Vandersanden for The Spa at South Lodge

Vandersanden Brick

The Spa at South Lodge, in the heart of the West Sussex countryside, is the picture-perfect, luxury destination for those seeking ultimate relaxation in complete comfort, far away from the pressures and strains of modern life. Designed by Hove-based architectural firm, Felce and Guy, this prestigious 44,000 sq. ft building sits harmoniously in its beautiful, natural setting with external facing bricks from Vandersanden selected to provide regular form, nuanced colours and natural texture for the project. Located in Lower Beeding, near Horsham, The Spa at South Lodge is a purpose-built spa within the grounds of an award winning 5-star hotel. It features a state-of-the-art gym and spin studio, indoor pool, outdoor hydrotherapy pool and wild swimming pool, a thermal suite and treatment rooms for members, hotel residents and spa day guests. In addition, The Spa at South Lodge includes the Ridgeview Beauty Bar and Botanica, a Mediterranean-inspired restaurant. Felce and Guy were commissioned to provide a full architectural design, then appointed as lead consultant and contract administrator to oversee the build carried out by main contractor, Beard Construction. The firm’s design balances the specific needs of the hotel and The Spa at South Lodge’s facilities with a sensitivity to the context of the countryside setting and close proximity to the main hotel. The resultant architecture sympathetically responds to these surroundings with the building deep-set into the landscape, minimising its scale, yet taking full advantage of the extensive views available to guests over the South Downs. As the landscape falls away, leading to natural water forms, so too does the new building with external terracing leading out to a vitality pool and down to an external swim pond. After reviewing and testing different samples in advance, Felce and Guy selected Vandersanden’s Lithium brick in a 50mm size for the project. This attractive, hand-formed facing brick comprises a sanded-coated and grained structure in a muted base grey colour with accompanying shades of buff and black to match the stonework colours of the main building at South Lodge Hotel. Over 100,000 bricks were sourced and supplied for the project by specialist brick distributor, N R Taylor of Lingfield, with the thinness of the brick helping to further reduce the visual scale of the Spa building. The horizontal lines of the brickwork act as a softening counterpoint to the vertical natural green oak cladding and large glass panelling that also feature as key elements in The Spa at South Lodge design. Elsewhere, the Lithium brick has been used in the copings, landscaping and dividing walls which create external contours and help to separate the terraces outside of the building. “The Vandersanden brick works with the other materials in the design to present a very organic aesthetic for The Spa at South Lodge,” says John Chapman of Felce and Guy. “It perfectly complements both the dark sandstone used in the original hotel and its mix of greys and brown as well as the natural surroundings. The straight, clean-lines and regular shape of the Vandersanden brick, together with the raked joint we’ve used, has helped emphasise the horizontality of the building and works especially well with the textured finish of the timber panels. As a practice, we set very high expectations which the Vandersanden bricks have undoubtedly satisfied.” In addition to a curving, meadow-grass roof, which helps to attenuate rainwater flow, the Spa at South Lodge benefits from other sustainable technologies and finishes. A biomass boiler system has been installed, and all drainage is contained on site, using reed bed technology. The existing ponds within the hotel grounds have been modified and extended to benefit the local ecology. Vandersanden itself is building a sustainable future for its business, having already invested in renewable solar and wind energy technologies at its major European production plants and committed to a pathway which will see the manufacture of CO2-neutral bricks by 2050. Underlining the significance of the project to the hotel and its management, every member of staff laid one brick as part of their contribution to The Spa at South Lodge. To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Iconic student housing complex, The Cube, defined by
Vandersanden’s Freya brick slips

Iconic student housing complex, The Cube, defined by Vandersanden’s Freya brick slips

Vandersanden Brick

The Cube is a striking new student housing development in the centre of Utrecht, Netherlands, designed by Amsterdam-based architectural practice, Team V, and featuring Freya multi-coloured brick slips from Vandersanden, which are used with the award-winning, pre-fabricated Signa facade system. This multi-use complex, which incorporates 639 student apartments and 1,000m2 of commercial space, provides a dramatic focal point in the redeveloped Overvecht area with its stepped rooftop landscape and two 50-meter-tall, interlocking vertical accents. The Cube mainly consists of small independent living spaces of about 21 square meters. Students can also use a wide range of shared amenities, such as living rooms and studies, laundry rooms, bike storage, and a rooftop garden on each floor. A series of rooftop gardens, connected to one another by stairs, form two routes that start on the ground floor, recognisable as a timber-finished incision cut out of the brick facade.Built in a year and a half by utilising clever design solutions, The Cube incorporates lightweight prefabricated components, to help accelerate the construction process and reduce material usage by cutting the depth and density of the foundations required. This pre-fabricated solution was the result of a collaboration between the architect, the builder and Vandersanden. Whilst searching for light weight building solutions and with a relatively fast building time in mind, a prefab option was specified. The unique Signa system comprises a prefabricated panel designed on the basis of a dimensionally stable brick panel that is resistant to the weather and covered with sustainable Vandersanden brick slips. Together with a prefab manufacturer the final panels were fabricated under stable conditions and assembled in Utrecht. A crane and 2 to 4 construction workers mounted up to 12-14 panels a day.Freya brick slips were chosen for their nuanced yellow/buff colour with ochre and grey tones, and a grained, characterful appearance. Two types of brick bond were used for the design, one being a vertical stretcher bond and the other a unique block bond. What is seen on the facade is the rigid structure of the grid that is used horizontally and vertically.Ruben Smits, architect from Team V explains; ‘the depth difference and the horizontal and vertical direction of the bricks, ensures that the prefabricated seams are hidden, creating a uniform facade appearance. We have also made great use of encouraging habitats for wildlife and all of that is behind the brickwork facade. We chose Vandersanden’s Freya brick slips because of its texture and variety of tones and colours, which helped us to achieve our design vision. The Signa panels offered us endless creative possibilities and fit together seamlessly which helped to accelerate the build process.’The choice of the Vandersanden Freya brick slips for this project was the result of much research into finding a brick with the desired aesthetics, which would also meet the technical requirements of the project. This brick type was a unanimous choice amongst those involved in the decision-making process. The project was completed in Autumn 2021.To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link
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Merlin Rise

Merlin Rise

Marshalls Bricks & Masonry

MARSHALLS BRICKS & MASONRY DELIVERS SUSTAINABLE ALTERNATIVE FOR THE MERLIN RISE DEVELOPMENTMarshalls Bricks & Masonry’s Mayfair Vintage facing bricks have been used by housebuilder Backhouse on its Merlin Rise development to achieve a high-quality, reclaimed brick aesthetic that also aligns with the sustainability goals of the business.In line with the company’s sustainability aims, Backhouse chose to use concrete facing bricks rather than a conventional clay alternative. Unlike clay bricks, concrete products do not require firing and as a result, only a small amount of additional energy is used in the manufacturing process. Concrete bricks are net absorbers of CO2 due to their continuous carbonation over their lifetime. Therefore, across the total lifetime of the product, concrete’s carbon footprint is as little as 49% that of traditional bricks.BY SELECTING THE MAYFAIR VINTAGE BRICK AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO A TRADITIONAL CLAY BRICK, BACKHOUSE HAS SAVED 93 TONNES OF CARBONCharles Phillpott, Senior Buyer at Backhouse said: “We are focused on creating places that are sympathetic to their location, respect the existing environment and we are serious about how we work with existing communities. Placemaking is at the very core of our developments and we constantly strive to use sensitive methods of construction and materials. Marshalls’ range of facing bricks not only allows us to choose from a range of colours and finishes, it also means we are incorporating an element of sustainability into the homes we build by the very materials we select. This makes our sustainability goals easier to achieve and is at the heart of what we want to do as a business”.Kevin Cafferty, Commercial Director at Marshalls Bricks & Masonry said: “There is nothing more rewarding than seeing the products we are so passionate about actually in-situ and forming part of someone’s home. The Merlin Rise development is testament to Clifton Emery Design and Backhouse; they have designed stunning and sustainable homes. We hope to see more of this sympathetic approach to design from other house builders and architects”.The Merlin Rise development was Highly Commended in the Development of the Year category (20-100 units) at the British Homes Awards 2021 and was shortlisted for the 2021 AJ Architecture Awards, Housebuilder Awards and Building Awards.
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Hanson Brick Plant

Hanson Brick Plant

Eternit

Profile 6 was specified on the 'super' brick plant because it is a high strength fibre cement sheet that is unaffected by the humid and aggressive environments found in this type of plant.
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Vandersanden introduces 25-year Guarantee Against Gypsum Efflorescence across their range of bricks

Vandersanden introduces 25-year Guarantee Against Gypsum Efflorescence across their range of bricks

Vandersanden Brick

Brick manufacturer Vandersanden, recognised for its innovation, sustainability and craftsmanship, now offers a 25-year guarantee against gypsum efflorescence on its facing bricks and brick slips, ensuring long-lasting, sustainably attractive facades. Vandersanden was the first company to develop a viable, large scale coating solution to their brick range, to provide superior protection against gypsum efflorescence as well as secondary protection against the effects of pollution. This innovative and environmentally sustainable process is available across a range of Vandersanden’s portfolio. The company is the only brick manufacturer to offer the 25-year guarantee. Mathew Davies, National Specification Manager for Vandersanden comments;“This guarantee offers specifiers the peace of mind that the buildings they design will retain the beauty of their original facades. Over time bricks can discolour and lose their lustre because of wet weather, air pollution or gypsum efflorescence. The result can have a detrimental effect on a building’s visual aesthetic, compromising the architect’s design vision. Our brick guarantee, means that brickworks will not be affected by gypsum efflorescence and facades built from Vandersanden’s wide range of bricks, will stay looking good for longer.” Innovative CoatingVandersanden worked with Belgian University, KU Leuven, to develop the solution which treats bricks with an innovative coating after the firing process. The process penetrates to a depth from 5mm to 15mm whilst retaining the original colour of the brick. The liquids contain no harmful substances or chemicals that can damage the brick or the environment and is applied at Vandersanden’s manufacturing facilities in Belgium and The Netherlands. A coated brick has exactly the same pore structure as a non-coated brick and the number of pores and their size remain the same. However, as the walls of the pores are covered with a water-repellent layer, the water droplets are no longer attracted to the walls and will not be absorbed. As the pores remain open, the bricks also retain their resistance to frost. To find out more click here RIBA certified CPD to enhance knowledgeVandersanden offers a RIBA certified CPD on how to prevent brick stains and efflorescence as part of their CPD webinar series. This CPD explains about the discolouration issues commonly experienced with brickwork facades and the reasons behind the different types of staining that occur, and also covers the preventative methods that can help avoid gypsum efflorescence and the protective role that innovative coated bricks can play. To find out more and register for the CPD, click here Inspirational ProjectsVandersanden has a long history of collaboration with leading architecture practices, with their products specified in a wide range of both commercial and residential buildings. Vandersanden’s coated bricks feature in a number of inspirational projects, including: Cosway Street; One of the first residential developments created and offered for sale by Westminster City Council, this project in Marylebone, London, designed by David Miller Architects, is a collection of 49 contemporary homes set around an attractive communal garden. Vandersanden’s Cayenne, Woodland Mixture and Lima bricks are integral both to the pre-cast Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) panels, forming the facades, and the traditional hand-laid brickwork lining the balcony spaces. Learn more here Oasis Academy: Setting an aesthetic benchmark at the heart of the regeneration of London’s Royal Docks, Oasis Academy Silvertown is a new Department for Education school created by architects Rivington Street Studio. The landmark building serves 11-16 year olds and achieves a BREEAM ‘Excellent' rating while its striking appearance owes much to the use of Vandersanden’s Perla bricks.Learn more here The Spa at South Lodge: Set amidst the rolling hills of the South Downs, the Spa at South Lodge is a sanctuary of relaxation and a shrine to well-being. Natural form, organic textures and harmonious colours were required to complement the existing hotel building and the surrounding countryside. Designed by Hove-based architectural firm, Felce and Guy, this prestigious 44,000 sq. ft building sits harmoniously in its beautiful, natural setting with Vandersanden’s Lithium bricks selected to provide regular form, nuanced colours and natural texture for the project. Learn more here To find out more about the 25-year guarantee and Vandersanden's coated bricks or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link
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Using Cast Iron Imperial Air Bricks with Metric Ducting

Using Cast Iron Imperial Air Bricks with Metric Ducting

Cast Iron Air Brick Company

Although we have cast iron slotted air bricks in metric sizes to perfectly engage with modern plastic ducting and periscopes, there may come a time when the installation requires imperial old patterned cast iron air bricks. Connecting these can be especially difficult which is why we've introduced these aluminium sleeves known as the metimp adapators (short for metric imperial). They are available in two sizes, single air brick size to connect up to a periscope duct and cavity wall sleeve or the double brick size for connecting to a larger wall sleeve
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Bell Phillips Architects choose Vandersanden bricks for colour, texture and contrast at Orwell House

Bell Phillips Architects choose Vandersanden bricks for colour, texture and contrast at Orwell House

Vandersanden Brick

For its architecturally striking Orwell House scheme in Bethnal Green, London, Bell Phillips Architects (BPA) has specified hand-formed, multi-coloured Antro bricks from Vandersanden, the brick maker renowned for its innovation, craftsmanship and sustainable manufacturing practices. Antro provides just the right balance of colour, texture and contrast for this affordable housing project, designed by BPA for London Borough of Tower Hamlets and forming part of the Berthold Lubetkin-designed Dorset Estate, originally constructed in the 1950’s and 1960’s.Comprising 20 flats in total, Orwell House is a new, wedge-shape, in-fill development, just off Colombia Road, to the North-West of the Borough. BPA’s imaginative design for this six-storey building features balconies and a roof terrace that look out across Ravenscroft Park with the steel-framed volume of Orwell House contained by Vandersanden’s multi-coloured greyish brick envelope. On the two shorter sides, this brick envelope is fronted by balconies clad in pink, glass-reinforced concrete (GRC) panels. This bold chequerboard patterning echoes the tones and patterns used by Lubetkin to animate facades on buildings across the existing estate.Completed in July 2020, Orwell House is a Finalist in the Housing Awards 2021. To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Vandersanden Bricks are Top Class for WilkinsonEyre at City, University of London’s New Law School Building

Vandersanden Bricks are Top Class for WilkinsonEyre at City, University of London’s New Law School Building

Vandersanden Brick

High quality Anicius facing bricks from manufacturer, Vandersanden, are a key ingredient in the success of the new home of the City, University of London’s Law School designed by award-winning global practice, WilkinsonEyre.This impressive WilkinsonEyre scheme has retained two of the site’s existing buildings and integrated these with two distinct new-build blocks that form a corner at Sebastian Street and Goswell Road in London EC1 to create a new 7,240m2 City Law School Building.The new facility provides high quality academic space to support the University’s strategic plans, while, at the same time, creating a sense of community and place on a site that has previously been under-utilised.The scheme is conceived as a series of united blocks and includes two retained 1920s light industrial buildings arranged around a central atrium space. At the corner of Sebastian Street and Goswell Road, a striking seven storey glazed tower employs an innovative ventilated double-skin with patterned interlayers to control temperature and glare. The four blocks each retain their distinct, individual character yet function as one coherent building.As well as bringing all law students together under one roof, the new building will boast several innovative features, including a mock court room; and dynamic social spaces that encourage creativity and interactive learning, alongside the law school library, which is given an added sense of presence by the continuation of the brick detailing, internally.The building will also house a legal clinic, where students will be able to put their learning into practice by advising real people on real legal issues. The attractive features extend to the outside with a relaxing outdoor space.The form of the building negotiates between the scale of the Georgian residential streets and the larger more varied grain of Goswell Road, a key arterial road into the City of London.The choice of brick to help manage this blended transition between the new development and existing buildings was, therefore, significant with the Anicius brick from Vandersanden, successfully meeting WilkinsonEyre’s design ambitions.Its attractive colour hues and texture met the requirement of the architect’s CGI visualisation that had been approved by the planners and the Conservation Officer, the building being on the edge of the Northampton Square conservation area, and the brick was specified on review of a large sample panel supplied by Vandersanden.Anicius is a hand-formed, multi-coloured brick from Vandersanden with a sanded-coated and creased structure. The base colour is a warm brown which is muted by subtle tones of white, grey and ochre, achieved through the use of specific sand types in the brick’s surface covering.A total of 210,000 bricks have been used by contractors BAM to create the external walls of the new City Law School Building and meet the desired characterful aesthetic.The choice of the Vandersanden Anicius brick for this project was the result of much research into finding a brick with the desired aesthetics, which would also meet the technical requirements, including the detailing around the chamfered reveals of the library windows. In the end, this brick was a unanimous choice amongst those involved in the decision-making process.To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Chelwood

Chelwood

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

Chelwood House by Napier Clarke is a clean, modern building in Chesham Bois, Amersham. It was built to replace an existing suburban house and is located within an area of special character meaning it was vital to seamlessly blend into the local area.Napier Clarke elected to use local brick and charred timber to ensure the house’s materials were able to sit visually well within the immediate area. Chelwood’s impressive size (5 bedrooms, 5 bathrooms, living space, snug, kitchen/ dining, play area, garage, utility room and an attic yoga room) and modern visual leanings were expected to be a challenge for local planning authorities. However, the building’s sympathetic materials and centrepiece vaulted roofs were inspired by the local area and the proposals were accepted.Chelwood introduces a cantilevered brick upper floor to its design which contrasts the simple design of the ground floor. Internally, the same materials used in its external spaces are repeated, creating a series of truly dynamic focal points.Chelwood uses legacy Michelmersh products in its production and recently won the Individual Housing Award in the 2022 BDA Brick Awards.
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Creek Road, Greenwich

Creek Road, Greenwich

Ibstock Brick Ltd

This 2018 Brick Awards winning project, the development on Creek Road, comprises of 83 contemporary homes and 1,800 sqm of commercial floor space. The architectural brief called for the brickwork to mirror an existing type and colour dating back to Victorian times. The selection of building materials was pivotal to the realisation of the project, and after careful consideration of the various options a decision was taken to centre the construction around one primary brick type: British manufactured Ibstock’s Funton Old Chelsea Yellow bricks, locally sourced from our Ashdown Factory, East Sussex.
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Brick Kiln Lane

Brick Kiln Lane

Forterra Building Products

The ChallengeBrick Kiln Lane is a development of seven, four and five-bedroomed, cottage-style units situated at the end of residential road in a quiet, rural area of Leicestershire. There are two different designs: four L-shaped and three rectangular. Each of the seven houses needed unique elements of detailing – including window variations, render and brickwork – to distinguish it from its neighbour.The SolutionHampton Rural Blend brick was chosen to complement the character style of the development. Combined with recessed mortar joints, the brick blend, which is made up of several shades, creates a more aged appearance that helps the houses to sit comfortably within their environment.The BenefitsThe brick detailing on the units includes dentilation around the eaves and gables, and segmental arches over windows, all of which are in keeping with the traditional architectural style of the units and serve to enhance their aesthetic appeal.
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Fish Island Village

Fish Island Village

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

Fish Island Village by Haworth Tompkins is a residential development located in the heart of Hackney Wick, London. The development was designed with the intention of preserving the area’s industrial heritage while incorporating modern and sustainable living spaces. The brick-fronted buildings, which are inspired by the local warehouses and factories, give the development a unique character and sense of history.To maintain the authenticity of the area, Fish Island Village made use of clay bricks in the construction of its buildings. The main type of clay brick used was the classic red-brown London Stock Brick. However, in addition to the London Stock Bricks, Fish Island Village also utilized other types of clay bricks, such as Freshfield Lane’s Danehill Yellows, to add texture and depth to the buildings. These different types of clay bricks were carefully selected to complement each other and enhance the overall look and feel of the development.Fish Island Village won the Urban Regeneration category in the 2022 BDA Brick Awards.
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A greener living experience for Paspoel Anders

A greener living experience for Paspoel Anders

Vandersanden Brick

Paspoel, a Belgian hamlet, has experienced huge population growth since 1950. Over the past few decades, social housing company, Woonzo, built a number of residential blocks, called Paspoel Anders, which had since become obsolete, so were demolished and replaced with new, modern buildings, featuring brown/black nuanced ‘Flemming’ bricks from Vandersanden. With a clear preference for a textured facing brick with a timeless character, a brick height of 5cm was selected to allow flexibility for interplay, with bricks protruding by a few centimetres on some facades relative to other surfaces. A thin-bed mortar gives the brick a sleeker lookTo find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the View more' link 
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Allies and Morrison choose 50mm format Vandersanden Brick for Award-Winning Westbourne Park Baptist Church

Allies and Morrison choose 50mm format Vandersanden Brick for Award-Winning Westbourne Park Baptist Church

Vandersanden Brick

Hand-formed Crème bricks from high quality manufacturer, Vandersanden, are core to the design vision behind Westbourne Park Baptist Church, a recently completed mixed-use development in West London, designed by award-winning architects, Allies and Morrison. A Baptist church was first established on this site, close to the Royal Oak Underground station, back in 1875. This original church was damaged beyond repair during the Second World War but its replacement, erected in the 1960's, had become outdated, was poorly configured and expensive to maintain. A community-led project and partnership between social housing provider, Dolphin Living, and Westbourne Park Baptist Church, appointed Allies and Morrison to design a scheme that would include new accommodation for the church, a family centre, and the Paddington Children's Library alongside a community hall and 33 intermediate affordable homes. Winner of a Highly Commended accolade in the Civic Trust Awards 2021, the Allies and Morrison design creates an exemplar in the integration of religious, community and residential uses through a compact mixed-use development. A 'campanile' provides a focal point that announces the presence of the church at the heart of the scheme. The main building itself features large windows which signal the location and provide generous direct daylight into the five upper floors of apartments. As well as reflecting its multi-use character, this scheme also addresses the sensitive heritage of the site and its residential context. Here, the choice of brick as a material was significant. Allies and Morrison selected Vandersanden’s Crème facing brick in a 50mm size for the project. “We went through an extensive design review process in brick selection before settling on Crème from Vandersanden,” says Richard White, Associate at Allies and Morrison. “This hand-formed cream-coloured brick helps elevate the status of the design, forming a consistent and restrained material and colour palette of brick, steel, aluminium and glass that sits harmoniously with the stucco of the adjacent villas. The geometry of the brick modules is important both in expressing the building’s aesthetic and helping to harmonise its scale with its architectural context.” Crème is created from a combination of different clay forms which yield a white base colour, then coated with specific sand types to bring a grained, creased texture and shades of yellow to the overall final appearance. At Westbourne Park Baptist Church brick headers and stretchers are layered alternately in each course with headers centred on the stretchers of the course below in an attractive Flemish bond. At the same time, the 50mm format of the Crème brick, in combination with splayed reveals on the campanile, pulled headers on the building’s uppermost recessed storey and evenly placed vertical break lines help order the building’s massing as it steps down to mediate between the taller mixed-use buildings of Porchester Road and the smaller-scale residential character of the historic Westbourne Park Villas. Approximately, 150,000 bricks were sourced for the project.To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link 
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Dujardin Mews

Dujardin Mews

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

Designed by architect Karakusevic Carson Architects with Maccreanor Lavington, Dujardin Mews is a multi-award-winning collection of 38 new homes and is the first social housing to be built in Enfield in 40 years.Built to replace nearby high-rise social housing towers, Dujardin Mews is a traditional street of attached houses but with a distinctly unique style. The homes achieve a Code for Sustainable Homes level 5 with reduced running costs thanks to their designs. Freshfield Lanes First Quality Multi bricks help the project blend into the area and allow a soft, traditional red brick glow to palette the area.Dujardin Mews has won a host of awards since 2018 including a Civic Trust Award, A RIBA National and London Award, A Brick Award and more.
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Realising a build to rent vision with Vandersanden

Realising a build to rent vision with Vandersanden

Vandersanden Brick

Part of the Wembley Park masterplan, this mixed-use development designed by GRID Architects delivers 396 Build to Rent dwellings for Quintain Living, together with a large health centre and retail along two streets. The specification of Vandersanden’s Majestic and Luna Taranis bricks responds to the setting of the development and helps visually separate the buildings.Repton Gardens is the next generation of Build to Rent developments at Wembley. The form is two long buildings on either side of a large amenity courtyard, with a smaller block between. The two main buildings are split into two, the southern half is 11 storeys high and the northern half steps up to 21 storeys. These brick-clad forms present a strong architectural statement within the huge regeneration of the area that is seen on arrival at Wembley Park station. From the first drawing, the facade material for the development was conceived as being brickwork. The architecture is simple and elegant but there was the desire to visually separate the elements of the two stepped buildings. To achieve this it was decided to use contrasting bricks with a light, but warm brick for the taller elevations and a dark - but again warm - brick for the lower areas. With this in mind, Vandersanden’s Majestic brick, which is a light grey with a hint of buff, was selected for the upper part while the darker Luna Taranis brick was chosen for the lower. The colour and texture of these bricks also contrast with the greyer, smoother brick of the existing, neighbouring buildings. “The brick choice was crucial,” explains Colin Veitch, director at GRID Architects. “We didn’t want the appearance of a normal mixed brick. The colour variation and texture that the Vandersanden product offers are an essential part of the richness of the overall design; they feel more natural and less engineered.”  GRID Architects had previously used Vandersanden products on Emerald Gardens, part of the same Wembley masterplan. “The bricks have a texture and almost handmade quality that you don’t get with many other brick types. When selecting the bricks for Repton Gardens we were looking at the colour first and foremost but, within that colour, the variation and the mix of slightly different colours within a batch. Another key consideration was the brick’s texture and the variation within that. We were very pleased with all these qualities and how they work together,” notes Veitch. The bricks were laid with a stretcher bond using a mortar as close as possible to the brick colour. Although slightly recessed, the joints are as flush as practicable so it feels like a homogeneous material across the wall. On the courtyard facades of the buildings, panels of corbeling were introduced to provide patterning - where the building cores meet there were no windows. To achieve this, every other course stands out by 20mm, creating light and shade to the facade. Appreciating the colour and texture of the buildings, both from afar and close up was an essential part of the vision. On arrival at Wembley Park station, the visitor looks towards Wembley stadium and sees the light coloured ends of these buildings at a distance and they appear to be smooth. Getting closer, the buildings reveal themselves differently as the texture, colour variations and tactility of the surfaces are perceived. Another goal was to tie together the external and internal visions. ‘Botanical living’ was the concept for both the inside and outside of the development. There is greenery, planting and colour in the corridors; it is about bringing nature inside. With this in mind, it felt right to have a natural feeling material on the outside; rather than a smooth and engineered product. Colin is enthusiastic about the resulting aesthetic. “The bricks have exceeded expectations and everybody is very pleased with the look of the project. Working with Vandersanden has been an incredibly positive experience!”
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Changing the perception of crematorium buildings with Vandersanden

Changing the perception of crematorium buildings with Vandersanden

Vandersanden Brick

A new crematorium facility for Huntingdon Town Council, Huntingdon Crematorium is a collection of buildings equipped with ceremonial spaces and the appropriate crematory functions. The specification of Vandersanden’s Perla and Morvan bricks has resulted in buildings that have made a striking contribution to the landscape of the greenfield site while also helping to change the accepted perception of crematorium buildings. “We were looking for a way of making the process of going to an end of life ceremony uplifting and hopeful,” explains Mark Doohan, managing director at Benchmark Architects. “We had the idea of creating a curved, white, brick building within which there are beautiful, light filled and airy spaces.” When envisioning the scheme, the team at Benchmark Architects realised that by inserting a black brick wall across the site they could create a ‘canvas’ that provided the separation between the front of house and working areas of the crematorium. Against this, on one side, they packed three curved white brick volumes to create the key spaces, adjusted in height according to the hierarchy of their importance: the entrance lobby, waiting room and chapel. Out of sight, behind the wall, are the cremators, plant rooms, offices and other functional elements. The design focuses on a central drum flooded with natural light. The main building contains the ceremonial hall for 125 people, waiting rooms and crematory with capacity for two cremators. A second building contains a multi-purpose function room - that can be used for wakes - and a café with associated catering facilities and administrative offices. Having created the design vision, the choice of appropriate bricks was crucial. Good white bricks are hard to come by, often they’re tinged with yellow or beige; finding black bricks that are not simply colour coated or are a dark blue is equally hard, says Doohan.“We were delighted when we were able to find the Vandersanden bricks. We genuinely love the texture and through colour quality of Vandersanden’s white Perla and black Morvan bricks. They set off our concept perfectly, with the white brick capturing the light in the way that we envisioned when first sketching out the idea.” A double soldier course heads the windows to form a band around the building and is repeated close to the top of the main drum. There is also a recessed course 500 mm off the ground that creates a scored line at the base, bringing additional balance to the building. This is achieved by setting one course back by some 25 mm. Another advantage of the Vandersanden bricks is that they can be used in the ground below DPC level, visually rooting the building to the landscape. It was essential that the volumes were homogenous in feel so a good mortar match was vital. Lime mortar was selected and was aesthetically important due to its colour, texture and because its flexibility reduced the number of movement joints required. The lime used, NHL 3.5, was naturally white; for the black brickwork it was pigmented. When seen from a distance, only the overall form of the building is perceived but, on getting closer, the brick details start to stand out. Then, when really close, the contribution that the texture, pattern, shape and almost handmade quality of the individual bricks makes to the quality of the building becomes clear. We’re always keen to specify products where we get really good technical support, notes Doohan. “Vandersanden were excellent at providing advice and technical backup whenever we had a question. Since becoming aware of Vandersanden products, they are our go-to source for brick. As architects, we’re image-based creatures so the website is incredibly helpful. It’s an excellent way of being able to see the bricks in loads of different and inspiring building types. Many brick suppliers don’t show that connection. Most importantly, our client for Huntingdon Crematorium is delighted with the brickwork.”To find out more about the bricks used in this project or to see the wide range of high-quality bricks available from Vandersanden, click on the 'View more' link
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Ibstock Place School

Ibstock Place School

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

Ibstock Place School opened its newly built refectory in 2021. Designed by Maccreanor Lavington the competition-winning design is a dedicated space for the most communal part of the school. With a high ceiling and intricate woodwork, the open space is functional but uplifting.The high-level roof lanterns form a chimney to pull out hot air during the summer as well as fill the space with soft natural light, which is perfectly accented by acoustic dampening panels of oak.Handmade Bricks from Freshfield Lane were used in the construction of the cloister and work perfectly with the school’s previous uses of brick. Additionally, the choice of bricks helps set the building within its tranquil garden setting. The handmade Freshfield Lane brick helps the building age gracefully into the landscape while retaining a notable elegance. This sophisticated taste is mirrored inside by soft copper notes and long, hanging light fittings.
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The Grid

The Grid

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

The Grid is a four-storey project in Leeds, it consists of 11 apartments housing 38 beds with a cycle store, gym and laundry facilities. Its modern approach to design fits the aesthetic choices of university students while landscaped grounds offer an area of calm with limited parking for each flat.The Grid makes perfect use of Carlton’s Wolds Minster Blend and its internal contemporary leanings. The dark orange, red, purple and brown bricks create a harmonious visual synergy with the ageing brickwork in the surrounding area.
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Trafalgar Place

Trafalgar Place

Michelmersh Brick Holdings PLC

Trafalgar Place, London designed by De Rijke Marsh Morgan Architects (dRMM) is a Stirling-award shortlisted mixed-use project designed as part of the Elephant and Castle regeneration. It offers 235 homes set within a reinvigorated area, designed to replace 1960’s era mega blocks. Each new home comes with its own garden, balcony or roof terrace and has been designed to maximise light and space.A rich combination of MBH PLC’s Freshfield Lane clamp-fired Danehill Yellow, Anthracite, Selected Lights, Selected Darks and First Quality Multi bricks were used to create a stunning vertical gradient that helps to both blend in with the established vernacular while creating a modern identity befitting such an expansive redesign of the area. FabSpeed blended all the brick special products which had to be meticulously coordinated and blended to achieve the gradient colour change on the main facade.Additional care was given to the landscape, with pre-existing trees integrated into the project and a variety of open spaces created to allow residents to find solace amongst natural environments despite the site’s proximity to the wider city.Trafalgar Place won the ‘Best New Place to Live’ and the ‘Mayor’s Award for Planning Excellence’ at London Planning Awards, in 2016 and Best Housing Design Award at the 2015 Brick Awards.

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