Alastair Henman, Managing Director at fencing solutions specialist Zaun, looks at the role of perimeter fencing and highlights the importance of a bespoke approach for a variety of applications.

A perimeter fencing system can play several different roles depending on your project requirements. If, for example, you are looking for a suitable boundary for a school project, then the key factors are security and aesthetic appeal. Security comes first as keeping pupils and staff safe and secure is a priority, whilst also protecting the school from the threat of intruders, criminal activity and anti-social behaviour. However, the aesthetics of the perimeter solution also needs to be considered, avoiding a fortress or prison-like appearance that may be detrimental to a school’s reputation.

At the opposite end of the scale are important factors for applications like fencing for sports pitches. Here, the main implications are usually keeping a ball, whether tennis, hockey or football, in the confines of the pitching arena. Noise issues are another factor that needs to be considered, particularly if the pitch is in a built-up area near a housing estate. There are also the costs associated with maintaining a sports fence that is susceptible to damage from a ball constantly hitting it at force.

For those working in the landscaping sector, there is obviously a wide range of projects where a perimeter system is needed, from schools and sports pitches to parks, playgrounds and commercial buildings, to name but a few. Not one project is the same, makes it essential the solution you choose is fit for purpose. Those looking to invest in a fencing solution will want peace of mind that it is a worthwhile long-term investment, considering its whole-life cost, its ability to perform to the highest standards and meet industry expectations.

Sporting the latest look

At Zaun, we believe that no matter what the application is, it is important to look at its individual requirements and any potential problem areas that may arise. A recent example of this was a multi-million-pound project to develop a second Olympic standard pitch at Cannock Hockey Club. Zaun was tasked to develop an innovative solution specifically tailored towards hockey pitches.

The Club had come across several issues on its other pitches where traditional mesh fencing had been installed around the perimeter that featured wooden boards at the bottom. The heavy impact from balls had caused a substantial amount of damage over time and required vast amounts of expensive repair work, as well as an excessive amount of noise being produced from balls rebounding off the boards.

Following a site visit, Zaun determined a suitable and unique mesh fencing solution that now forms a strong part of its sports and play fencing range.

Utilising 8mm wires in a tight 25mm by 50mm pattern clad to the bottom section of the fencing, Zaun’s Hockey range effectively withstands and absorbs ball impact during play. Noise issues were also eliminated by installing fixings every 200mm incorporating synthetic rubber inserts to reduce rattle. Tested under the same conditions, Zaun’s Hockey fencing range only produced a noise level of 68dB compared to the traditional wooden hockey boards that reached levels of 97dB.

Had it not been for Zaun’s Hockey fencing range, an unsuitable perimeter could have been installed that would not have been able to cope with the rigour of such ball games as hockey.

Not just a fence

Zaun understands that fencing doesn’t just mean providing a perimeter; it can be utilised to resolve further issues. This was the case for Paget High School in Staffordshire, which required a cost-effective yet secure means to store individual bikes, encouraging pupils to cycle to school as a healthier and more environmentally friendly way of travelling.

In response to this, Zaun developed a brand new range of robust mesh bike lockers that could be individually locked and hired out to students each school year. Unlike many similar products currently out there in the marketplace, the solution had to be financially affordable, unlike many similar products currently out there in the marketplace that seemed overpriced. Zaun identified this issue and manufactured, delivered and installed the bike lockers to Paget High School at an affordable price.

What’s next?

Perimeter fencing provides more than just a boundary nowadays. As the UK fencing market becomes increasingly saturated with a wide selection of products, it can be difficult to determine the best solution. Zaun strives to make every step of this process as simple as possible – everything from design and manufacturing, right through to installation advice and aftercare.

Not only can we help to point you in the right direction, but we can also update you with the latest technological developments, including Zaun’s revolutionary Armaweave range. Designed specifically for high-security applications such as airports, utility plants and other areas of critical national infrastructure, its innovative woven pattern requires no welding to hold it together, making it the first of its kind on the market.

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About Zaun

Zaun Limited is the sole remaining manufacturer of welded and woven mesh fencing systems that manufactures the entire system in the UK.  Zaun makes the mesh, fencing panels, posts, clamp bars and fixings at its state-of-the-art five-acre production facility in Wolverhampton in the West Midlands.  Products have been tested and approved by testing organisations including CPNI, LPCB and Secured by Design.

Zaun works very closely with all stakeholders within the business including employees, local, national and international suppliers and a long-established customer base of fencing contractors to design, manufacture and supply high-quality fencing systems, increasingly often providing expertise in integrating PIDs and other systems into holistic security solutions.

Zaun was founded in 1996 and remains a private company solely owned by co-founder Alastair Henman with a regional office in Dubai.  They are certified to the ISO 9001 quality standard. It is also a member of the Perimeter Security Suppliers’ Association (PSSA), of which Alastair Henman is a director.

Zaun is a proud British manufacturer and founder member of the Made in Britain campaign, a key player in the UK fencing market and one of the fastest-growing companies in an increasingly competitive industry.

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