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A very basic coloured elevation drawing with a handful of sizes arrived in my inbox around 16 months ago showing the proposed wall panelling for a new building at Cirencester college, I priced it basing it on the info available and submitted it to the relevant parties.

As with all other jobs that are part of a big build that can go on for months and sometimes years we are usually invited to review our price, thankfully we were asked to review this one. It has been no secret in my blogs as to the ever increasing cost of material over the past few months, this job was no exception so I reviewed it and re submitted my costings and hoped for the best.  Thankfully the cost increase was approved and we received the order.


I took a ride down in late October to survey site, obtain measurements and deliver samples.  I arrived to a very clean and tidy site which looked to be right on schedule, I took the relevant sizes required and discussed my proposal with the management team on site.

My proposal was to fix a black melamine board to the wall which would carry any dips in the wall and ensure a smooth surface to stick and fix laminated panels to, this was agreed to a degree as a deeper section was required to ensure that the margins in the ceiling looked correct.

I went away and produced drawings of my proposal and submitted them to be approved.

With everything approved we could make a start.


Once the bonded panels arrived at the workshop we could make a start on cutting and edging all the panels required.  I produced a cutting list and gave it to Owen to sort out, taking the reigns he set about machining all the black back panels and labelling them with there corresponding location letters, once Danny returned from self isolation he cut and edged all the wood grain panels, then it was a team effort to clean up all the components which were then packed up into their relevant bundles.

This was going to be what we call a site job, this means the majority of the work was to be carried out on site, all we could do was get as much done in the workshop as possible.  Because of the nature of a site job, you can’t prepare everything as you just don’t know some sizes until other items are installed, so we resigned ourselves to a long week on site.


6 am starts were the order of the week and there were no exceptions, we had a mission ahead and we were gong to throw everything we had at it!  Arriving on site Danny spotted a cherry picker and had the excellent idea of using it to transport all the components to the first and second floor.  This would save our legs and time, did I mention that these were on the first and second floor?  Anyway, once everything was on its relevant floor  (twice as quick as planned) we could fix the battens to the wall which would take the black MFC panels.  Once all the battens were fixed we could ascertain a height to laser a straight level line across the 19 metres of the atrium.  To do these we bought a brand new green line laser level and laser finder, we love our new toys but this was a brilliant bit of kit, much easier to see than our red line laser.  At this point we could fix the top panels which would take the grooved panels, at this stage we all knew how to progress and we split into two teams and attacked each floor at the same time.  Black panels were going up as quick as they could be found from the pile and before we knew it the woodgrain panels which returned into the reveals were being fitted.

Once the reveals were all lined this gave us the positions of the facing panels and with everything labelled with a system that corresponded to a drawing the panels went on without any issues and before long it was starting to look the business.  With the middle panels on we could then take sizes of the panels which would meet up with the reveal linings, because the panels are all edged we had to take them back to the workshop and cut them on the wall saw and run them through the edge bander.  This takes a few guys off site for an hour or so but it’s definitely worth it!

The last piece of the 19 metre long jigsaw puzzle are the skirtings. Not the nicest of jobs as you are grovelling around on the floor, but it has to be done.


The final task of the job was to go over the whole job with a fine toothed comb to make sure we had cleaned every panel, made sure everything was secure and that the job was top notch and what the client was expecting and more!  I’m sure we had some funny looks as 7 guys carefully and slowly walked up and down the corridor checking and checking again, but, it was worth it as the finished article was awesome!

A massive team effort on this one, everyone pulled together to pull it out of the bag and get it done in record time!  We received some nice comments from the clients whilst on site and we were informed that we would be receiving the order for the next phase.  That will be an exciting job as there are around 8 TV surrounds!

A job well done! Team work makes the dream work!!1

Have a great weekend!


Tags: Bespoke, Commercial Furniture, Comunal Furniture, Displays, Education Furniture, JFW Ltd HQ, JFW Process