According to a recent BBC article, more than £1m was spent by councils on repairing vandalism at schools in the past year – 2015. The exterior image that a school or college projects is crucially important to students and their parents. But how do you balance the need for security with the image you need to convey?
Over the last 12 years, Briscoe Lane Academy in Newton Heath, Manchester has suffered from persistent vandalism. The school backs on to woodland and the staff would regularly come into work to find smashed windows and broken glass in their classrooms. The numerous incidents of vandalism arose at weekends when the Academy was unattended. The school had rusty, damaged, barbed wire fitted to some of their windows, but this still didn’t deter hooligans from carrying out their reckless acts of damage. As a quick fix, Briscoe Lane fitted a thick, plastic cover to protect the windows from objects being thrown at them. This worked in terms of preventing window damage but it quickly became yellow and looked dreadful. The students couldn’t see outside, there was very little natural light, nor could they open the windows fully to let in fresh air. The school wanted to install new windows but were loath to make a huge financial investment without the benefit of a light, airy environment for the students and staff.
In May 2015, the school commissioned AA Projects to replace all of the windows throughout the school. Alex Speechley, AA’s Building Surveyor recommended Crimeshield by Window Security Solutions. He had installed Crimeshield previously at another school and knew that this attractive but secure window grille would be the perfect solution for protecting the school’s windows from the problematic acts of vandalism.
After consultations with Window Security Solutions’s site audit team, Briscoe Lane Academy chose to fit Crimeshield to 64 of their windows. The work took place during the summer holidays, whilst the school was closed. Window Security’s installation team fitted 162 Crimeshield grilles in total and the project was completed within 4 weeks.
Alex was extremely satisfied with the efficient service provided by Window Security Solutions and the quality of the Crimeshield products.
- Aesthetically pleasing, providing discreet window protection against vandalism
- Features a sturdy perforated screen which retrofits onto existing window frames and gives the impression of tinted glass from afar
- Allows windows to fully open and let in fresh air
- Offers a visible deterrent to potential thieves and vandals
- The grilles allow over 60% of light to enter the window enabling good visibility
The end results were a significant improvement on the previous barbed wire window security. The windows not only look attractive, but they are protected, without any detriment to the views and light from the inside. The school wanted the ability to open the windows fully during lessons and Crimeshield allows for this. The Academy focus on team-work and pupils and staff alike find it a happy place to be.
We spoke to Kath Farnley, Site Manager for the Academy who is delighted with the results;
“Crimeshield looks fantastic! It gives an attractive smoked-glass effect and most importantly staff and pupils feel that they are in a safe, secure environment. Now we can all enjoy the views of the woodlands and the light is fantastic. We would absolutely recommend Crimeshield and Window Security & Safety to any school who need to manage security while maintaining a happy, working environment. The service we received from Cardea from quote to installation was outstanding”
Debbie Ollerenshaw, Briscoe Lane Academy Trust Business Manager, is also very impressed with the benefits of Crimeshield;
“Our Academy is in an area of high deprivation and has suffered from extensive vandalism in the past. We wanted a product that was as aesthetically pleasing as possible within budgetary constraints. We are very impressed with the end result – it is very subtle. Crimeshield offers the protection you need without looking obtrusive. The level of service we received from Window Security & Safety was excellent. They are a great company to work with and we would definitely consider them for any other suitable projects in future.”
If you would like to find out more about protecting the windows in your schools and improving security, speak to one of our experienced window security specialists on 0161 413 0766 or send us an email.