VIVIX® by Formica Group panels used to restore nursery to its former glory

When the Scott Wilkie Nursery in London Borough of Newham required structural recladding on an allocated budget, Newham Council selected VIVIX® by Formica Group for the exterior façade panels.

The nursery exterior had lost its lustre over time and required an aesthetically pleasing, robust and cost effective façade to bring it back to life.

Stewart MacLachlan, RIBA MSc architect for the in-house technical team for the London Borough of Newham, undertook the renovation and explains: “The borough was keen to give the school a much needed facelift and to improve the front of house appearance. The colour palette was chosen by the school, and since the façade was specified for a nursery, it needed to be bright and welcoming. We installed 8mm VIVIX panels in Spectrum Blue and complemented it with accent panels of Spectrum Yellow.”

More than simply a choice of aesthetic, the sustainability credentials of the specified materials were a further influencing factor. Stewart continues: “It was imperative the panels were resistant to impact, abrasion and the elements, and that they were easy to maintain. This is what attracted us to use VIVIX panels as an external cladding. Using timber as a material requires regular maintenance, and metal is an expensive format whereby the thin sheets are prone to dent, so I was looking for an acceptable alternative that was aesthetically pleasing. Working for the council it is essential budgets are met but without compromising on quality; we approach refurbishment with an eye on longevity.”

VIVIX panels manage moisture by means of an air cavity between the inner structure and outer cladding, effectively keeping the building dry, insulated and more energy efficient. Stewart adds: “Knowing VIVIX panels provide insulation was certainly a factor in their selection. It’s also convenient that the panels are simple to overlay and cost-effective.” Compatible with a variety of fixing systems, from simple timber battens to proprietary metal systems, VIVIX panels are manufactured with renovation requirements in mind. Available in 6mm, 8mm and 10mm thicknesses, the panels can be cut into a variety of shapes and sizes and can also be field modified as needed.

VIVIX panels incorporate Formica Group’s commitment to sustainable principles and practices. Manufactured in Europe to ISO 9001 standards, the laminate delivers minimal environmental impact as determined by Formica Group’s product Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). LCA tracks the ecological effects of a product throughout its lifespan from raw material procurement, manufacture and transport, to its use, reuse and disposal. All of Formica Group’s European manufacturing sites and distribution centres have achieved the internationally-recognised Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) Chain of Custody (COC) certification from leading accreditation body, BM TRADA. This ensures that materials used in the production of Formica® High Pressure Laminate (HPL) and wood-based bonded items are from sustainably managed sources. Formica Group is also the first global laminate manufacturer to be awarded the Carbon Trust Reduction Label for its product ranges.