Harold Pinter Theatre wireless fire protection

Harold Pinter

The Harold Pinter Theatre in London’s Victoria district has undergone an upgrade, incorporating Apollo’s REACH range to establish a state-of-the-art wireless fire system comprising more than 100 devices.

Formerly known as the Comedy Theatre until 2011, the Pinter Theatre dates back to 1881 and boasts an elegant three-level horseshoe auditorium with seating for 796 spectators. Preserving this listed building while integrating a modern fire system posed a delicate challenge, but the introduction of wireless fire devices has revolutionized the process.

Sam Robinson, the Project Manager at Barlows (UK) Ltd., stated, “Striking the right balance between preserving a historical structure and implementing cutting-edge fire safety has always been a delicate task. However, wireless fire devices have proven to be a gamechanger.” Working in collaboration with the theatre management and Apollo, they successfully designed and implemented a system comprising 110 wireless devices connected to four hubs.

The REACH range provides a tailored survey kit that simplifies the design of a comprehensive system covering all crucial areas within the building. With a 100-meter range, only a few hubs are needed to cover the entire space efficiently. This wireless technology takes fire safety to new heights, surpassing the previous Xpander range, which was already commendable.

REACH Wireless is specifically designed to address challenging installation scenarios in structures with limited or complex access, such as listed buildings, outbuildings, and temporary structures, where wired installations or extended site downtime are not feasible.

The system’s battery life is reported to last up to five years, and it boasts enhanced RF communication capabilities and compact casings, making it suitable for standalone wireless systems or hybrid networks combining wired and wireless devices.

Craig Mole, Product Manager – Wireless at Apollo, commented: “The Harold Pinter Theatre is exactly the sort of building where wireless fire technology comes into its own. Not only is it simpler and quicker to install, the amount of cabling required is reduced by up to 90 percent, which means less impact on the fabric of the building, reduced necessity to seek permission for the works, and less need to ‘make good’ once the installation is complete. It also has advantages in a working building like a theatre, where any closure is going to result in lost income.”

“We’re very proud of a theatre, which is a living and working piece of genuine Victoriana in the heart of London, so we naturally want a fire system that protects our visitors and actors, while having minimal impact on the fabric of the building, said Barnaby Hallam, Technical and Building Managerat the Harold Pinter Theatre. “Working with the Apollo team, we were able to tick all the boxes and the finished system is doubly impressive, being both fit for purpose and also much less intrusive than the old wired network.”

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