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A combination of contemporary performance and a design versatility which can meet the aesthetic of traditional buildings has made neaco’s Spectrum balustrade and structural glass range a popular specification for church developments.

In recent years a variety of major church refurbishments and redevelopments have featured Spectrum, a pre-engineered modular system which offers a huge range of design options and finishes. These projects required Spectrum to integrate within buildings which are centuries old, demanding the ability to adapt to their distinctive ecclesiastical style and structurally restrictive features.

Neaco’s Managing Director, Alan Green, comments: “Church developments have very particular demands. They invariably involve the sensitive refurbishment of a historic listed building with a design scheme which refreshes its interior yet works in harmony with its original character and layout. It’s a difficult balance to achieve but I’m pleased to say that our Spectrum range has been very successful in doing so across several extensive redevelopment projects, including Holy Trinity Church in Ripon, Norton St. Phillip Church in Somerset and St. Peter’s Church in Arnesby. The launch of Timberline, our wood-effect aluminium balustrade system, means that we are now better equipped than ever to meet the aesthetic demands of traditional church buildings.”

At Holy Trinity Church in Ripon, Spectrum Clearline structural glass was specified by RBA Moody Bros (Contractors) Ltd for balustrading on a mezzanine floor. The installation formed part of an exciting and sensitive reordering of the historic building, which dates back to 1827, undertaken to create more space for church and community events.

A spokesman for RBA Moody Bros said: “Neaco were engaged to supply and install the bespoke structural glass balustrading for this prestigious project as a result of their technical and costing assistance during the tender and design process. Once the order was placed with neaco, their positive attitude continued – they worked diligently and pro-actively with ourselves and the project engineers to ensure that all the ‘tricky’ detailing relative to the facetted balustrading was thoroughly investigated and practically resolved in a manner that in no way compromised the aesthetic aspirations of the client.”

At Norton St. Phillip Church, Chedburn Design and Conservation designed new facilities for the Grade II listed building in Somerset. The project won Country Life’s Village Church for Village Life Award as the finest example of a church being adapted to serve the 21st-century needs of its village. Spectrum balustrade formed part of the development’s key design feature: a steel, glass and wood structure known as The Hub which has transformed the use of the building. Neaco’s stainless steel balustrade with glass infill was selected to complement traditional oak panelling.

Angela Dudley of Chedburn said: “We were very happy with Neaco’s contribution to the project. They produced a balustrade design which was ideally suited to our requirements and their team of installers completed the work to a very high standard.”

At St. Peter’s Church in Arnesby, Neaco worked from a brief which required unobstructed access to the church bells above the balustrade for occasional maintenance purposes. They collaborated with Corporate Architecture to produce a solution in which the whole unit, including glass panel infills, could be easily lifted from its anchoring set into the floor.

Jason Edwards of Corporate Architecture said: “We’ve used Neaco’s Spectrum balustrade on previous projects and knew it was a system of proven quality, but Neaco helped us to modify its usual specification – rather than using permanent wall fixtures, everything is secured in place with a base in which the removal of a few key fixings allows the balustrade to be removed, thereby allowing easy access to the church bells. The design works superbly and we also specified Neaco’s flat-bar stanchion option to maximize visibility for the view of the church’s stained glass.”

The Spectrum balustrade range features a comprehensive choice of infills, from toughened glass and rails to mesh and grilles. Neaco’s portfolio also includes balconies, inclusive bathroom facilities and aluminium open grille systems.