Wednesday, 2 January 2013


Laidlaw Interiors Group (LIG) has supplied ironmongery and doorsets as part of a £19 million pound refurbishment of the Bristol Old Vic.

LIG supplied a range of products from Laidlaw Solutions and Leaderflush Shapland for the refurbishment of the Bristol Old Vic. The full scale renovation, which included everything from electrics to carpets and seats, aimed to update the 1970s décor and make the theatre fit for modern day usage. LIG companies’ products were fitted to both the back of house and throughout the Georgian Theatre Royal - the oldest working theatre in the country.

In recognition of the strong historical architecture, Laidlaw produced bespoke bronze pull handles and ironmongery for inside the actual theatre, to ensure it remained sympathetic to existing elements. The back of house was fitted with ironmongery from the Orbis Commercial range where functionality reigned over aesthetic finish. Leaderflush doors, from their Audiodoor range, were fitted throughout the actual theatre because of the specialist acoustic requirements. The doors provide acoustic performance of up to 40dB, meaning performances can go on undisturbed.

 The work was started in February 2011 and has offered a fascinating insight into the early origins of the theatre, uncovering the original flag flooring of the pit and pit corridors.  Sarah Smith is the project director who oversaw the upgrade of the buildings in this phase of the project. “The overall aim was to make the buildings fit for purpose for the 21st Century, this included a full refit of the Theatre Royal, a 1766 Georgian theatre and all adjoining buildings to provide greater comfort and better suit the various artistic endeavours that happen in the space. However it also aims to be sympathetic to the historical design and this is why we brought Laidlaw Solutions and Leaderflush Shapland in for our ironmongery and doorset requirements.”

John Isaacs, Key Account Manager at Laidlaw Solutions, said: “The requirements of such a prestigious building meant that we had to incorporate a bespoke element in the theatre area to ensure the finished effect bore some resemblance to the original interior. In the back of house area, functionality was key and our Orbis range was the perfect fit for the needs of the users.”

Marcus Porche, Regional Sales Manager South, at Leaderflush Shapland also had to fulfill specific needs on the Bristol Old Vic project. “As a busy, working theatre, a specialist level of acoustic protection was required from the doors, which is why we installed our Audiodor range as it has an acoustic rating of up to 40dB. This provides a high level of comfort for audience members as well as reassuring performers that any outside noises won’t disrupt performances.

This phase of the Bristol Old Vic project was completed last summer and the theatre re-opened in September 2012.

Read this article and more from our Building Hardware section online.

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