MechSlip plays huge part in Cirencester College transformation

Innovative brick cladding system MechSlip has played a prominent role on a project at Cirencester College thanks to Aquarian Cladding Systems.

The ongoing transformation of the campus, both in terms of buildings and biodiversity, included a new state-of-the-art ‘Digital Skills Centre,’ a fantastic new facility which will hugely benefit students and transforming digital education at the college.

Jake McVitty, Aquarian’s Technical Sales Executive worked closely with the main contractor EG Carter & Co Ltd, and the architects for the project, Roberts Limbrick, on the selection of a brick cladding solution with non-combustible A1-rated mechanically-fixed brick cladding solution MechSlip chosen for the scheme.

As well as assessing the technical performance of the systems it was imperative that the brick finishes met the architects’ aspirations and with such a wide range available in MechSlip the Bradgate Medium Grey and Ivanhoe Cream Original, both from Ibstock Brick, were selected. MechSlip was installed on the project by specialist cladding contractor Central Classing Systems Ltd.

A benefit from start to finish

It was EG Carter & Co’s first MechSlip project, and it left a lasting impression on the company, which stated that it would certainly use the brick cladding system on future projects thanks to the many benefits during both pre- and post-construction.

Thomas Jones, Associate Director at EG Carter & Co explained: “MechSlip allowed us to have better

quality control on site when compared to standard masonry and more programme certainty which meant that installation time on the project was reduced.

“As a trusted and tested system, the relatively simple components led to easy detailing and drawings, while reduced weight on the frame and reduced wall thickness helped hugely with the design.

“We are very pleased with the outcome of the MechSlip system on the Digital Building at Cirencester College. The system worked well, reduced our risk for traditional masonry on the scheme and has delivered a great looking building that both ourselves and our client are very proud of. We would certainly consider using this system again.”

The perfect installation

It was also the first time Central Cladding’s had completed a brick slip system and Ellis Sausman, Estimator at the company, also agreed they would use the system again in the future.

“Due to the number of recesses and cladding junctions, we needed a product which was easily adaptable, which MechSlip was,” explained Ellis. “And in terms of specific design requirements, the fact that the main contractor could get semi watertight with the SFS and CP board early was a real help. Well-developed construction details were available pre-construction so we could adopt the design easily and, while it was a challenging project from tender stage, through design and the build process, we are all very happy with the project and how the building turned out. The feature recesses really stand out to us as a key design feature.”

The perfect partnership

Central Cladding worked with Aquarian Cladding, specialist supplier of brick cladding facades, and Ellis said: “We were incredibly happy with the service Aquarian Cladding provided. Technical Sales Executive Jake McVitty really helped us through the tender/design stage. As well as help with the costing point of view, from a technical perspective he was also deeply knowledgeable. With Aquarian, we were in the best hands.”

Jake himself added: “This project is a perfect example of the effectiveness of MechSlip with it offering several benefits to the scheme and ticking all of the boxes for the client. I enjoyed working closely with our customer Central Cladding Systems as this was their first brick slip cladding project, and I truly feel the end product speaks for itself and looks fantastic.”

Jazz Rigden, Aquarian Cladding’s Sales Director, said: “We are delighted that both EG Carter & Co and Central Cladding found MechSlip to be the perfect solution on the Colchester College project and we are extremely proud of MechSlip’s ability to adapt to and thrive in challenging environments.

“It is unlikely any other brick cladding solution could have been used as cost-effectively and efficiently as MechSlip to create a façade of such high quality.”

Since completion and opening in May, the Gloucestershire Digital Skills Centre was shortlisted in the ‘Best use of a brick slip cladding system’ category at the 2022 Façade Awards UK.

As key distributors of Gebrik, MechSlip and NaturAL-X, Aquarian Cladding Systems work with architects, contractors, developers and installation specialists. For more information, call 0808 223 9080, or email