Godalming College, is a sixth form college located in Surrey which offers a wide range of courses, both academic and vocational to students aged 16 - 19.
The institution prides itself on having created a strong sense of community amongst both students and teachers. In order to build on this quality, creating appealing and easily accessible breakout spaces around the college to facilitate interactions and headspace to study is vital.
The outdoor social spaces on the college campus remain a favourite lunchtime spot for many. However, it was identified that the flooring, which would provide no problem in dry weather, would become slippery and hazardous in wet or frosty weather.
Godalming College had previously worked with Watco on solutions to its indoor areas, and therefore enlisted the experts at Watco once more, to resolve this safety issue and ensure that it could be used reliably by students and staff year-round.
Once the Watco experts had assessed the surface material, it was quickly concluded that a durable, long-lasting, weather-resistant solution was a must. The durability was key to the high foot traffic that the popular seating area would experience from students and teachers.
Furthermore, it was identified that the decking would require added grip in order to prevent slips, trips and falls, because the current surface did not have any grooves of its own to offer traction underfoot.
“It was quickly concluded that a durable, long-lasting, weather-resistant solution was a must. In line with the Disability Discrimination Act, a yellow colour was chosen to signal the edges of the decking and where the steps were to support better accessibility for all users at the college.”
Following the inspection, Watco’s experts recommended the application of GRP Decking Strips which are suitable for heavily used commercial decking - perfect for a busy campus. The strips were provided predrilled and, because it’s a strip rather than a coating, they could be quickly and easily applied during the easter break – eliminating the need for downtime.
Safety remained a top priority on this project, with decking strips selected that feature chamfered edges to minimise trip hazards as no material is left to overhang on the decking. Furthermore, in line with the Disability Discrimination Act, a yellow colour was chosen to signal the edges of the decking and where the steps were to support better accessibility for all users at the college.
Finally, all aspects of the design were considered, with stone-coloured strips selected to blend in with the decking and maintain the aesthetic that had been created for the college’s outdoor spaces.