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Building Products March 2018

BRICKS, BLOCKS AND PAVERS MARCH 2018 | BUILDING PRODUCTS 19 it was important that the building did not compromise the significant street presence of the former building, with its distinctive 1930s Art Deco architecture. To achieve this, the brick for the new building was chosen to match the colour and texture of the original ones – a challenge as the old Jacobean bricks were originally made in North Wales and no longer available. Following a long brick matching process, a bespoke blend was eventually chosen as the best compliment to the original cinema building. With the original 1930s bricks on the old Odeon cinema no longer available, brick matching was always going to be a challenge, with several sample brick panels submitted to the architects not considered to be the best match. After sending a selection of bricks to site, a bespoke blend was agreed upon. Constructed using a very unusual bond pattern, a new control panel was built on-site and the ‘theatre blend’ brick was created. The new structure comprises approximately 123,800 ‘theatre blend’ bricks, all of which are standard, rather than feature bricks, creating a flow between the original building and the extension externally. An elegant composition, the bold mass of glass and brick elements give the building a real presence as an arts and entertainment venue within Chester city centre. Winner of the Best Public Building category in the Brick Awards 2017, the judging panel remarked on how the new brickwork, alongside the old, ‘fundamentally creates an iconic building which complements not only the surrounding architecture but also the city of Chester itself’. www.furnessbrick.co.uk Brick matching was always going to be a challenge


Building Products March 2018
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