Wednesday, 24 April 2013

When Carpet needs to be Tougher than Tough

We work with a youth club for teenagers so you can imagine the wear and tear the flooring gets. They used to have a wooden floor which was great for being tough, sturdy and easy to clean but there were problems. The noise was a real issue, the sound just echoed and bounced around the room, you couldn't hear yourself think, and with a mix of kids wanting to do different things, it was hard on those who wanted to chat or do a craft project in peace when others were doing a noisier activity. It also wasn't great from a health and safety perspective; as much as you tell the kids not to run around and to be careful there were often tumbles and a fall on wood can be quite nasty. There was one incident when someone spilt a drink on the floor. It wasn't cleaned up quick enough and another child slipped on it and fractured their wrist. Of course you don't want kids getting hurt, but it also puts you in danger of being sued by an angry parent who thinks their child has been hurt due to your negligence.

It was this incident that made the club organisers decide that something needed to be done. They'd recently had a fund raising event and so we decided that new flooring would be a good use for the money raised.  They looked into lino but were worried both about it getting scratched and looking unsightly, and it becoming torn and being difficult to repair and a tripping hazard. They had kind of dismissed carpet as not being hard wearing enough, but after seaking to us about tough flooring solutions they decided upon commercial contract carpeting. They read that it is used in busy offices, healthcare environments, and hotels, but when they saw that it was also used in schools they knew it would be ideal. If it could stand up to several hundred kids walking over it every day, then it would be fine for their lot! 

They talked through the youth club's needs until we fully understood their requirements. They chose a nice dark blue carpet. They had their new carpet fitted which didn't take long at all; it was all done and dusted within an hour or so. 

Their Feedback...  

"Well it's been amazing. A year later and it still looks like new. It's so easy to clean, spills seem to sit on the surface rather than soaking into the pile. It's very tough and hard wearing, but is soft enough to sit on. The main benefit has been the noise reduction though. It's like a different building which is great for the kids, and also for the sanity of the staff!"