A super-school in Lincoln is being protected from vandalism and burglary by round the clock remote CCTV monitoring.
The Chad Varah Primary School was formed from the merger of the former Myle Cross Junior School and St Giles Infant School. Major extensions were added to the former St Giles site to create the new school and all the pupils and staff moved to Myle Cross as a temporary home for 12 months whilst the £2m facelift was carried out.
With the schools being in an area that has experienced problems with vandalism in the past, project staff were concerned about how best to protect the site whilst it was under development.
The team at Mouchel – the outsourcing company which provides the building maintenance consultancy services to Lincolnshire County Council – undertook a feasibility study into security options.
The most effective solution they identified was a remotely monitored CCTV system, operating to the exacting BS8418 standard, which was specially configured, designed and installed by GBSG.
“We had a rather unique situation with the development of Chad Varah Primary School because we had to protect two sites but intended to be able to re-use security equipment from the temporary site once work was complete,” explained Rob Martin, lead consultant at Mouchel.
“Remote monitoring was the most effective solution to the problem of site security at this school, which is located in what can be a rather challenging area. As well as protecting the building, it also provided security for the contractors’ compound during building works. It helped to stop crime before it took place, unlike stand-alone CCTV which simply records an event and leaves little likelihood of prosecution.”
When the CCTV system was installed at Myle Cross, but before it had been commissioned, there was a break in. But operators spotted the intruders and responded to the event through the tannoy system that was in place ready for commissioning. “It stopped them in their tracks, and has continued to do so. We have had no problems at all with vandalism or break ins,” added Rob.
Tannoy plays a key role in remotely monitored CCTV, with the remote operators using it to alert intruders to the fact that they are under surveillance and that the police will be called.
Following the completion of the building redevelopment work , a BS8418 remotely monitored system with wrap around package was installed to protect the newly completed site from intrusion out of hours.
The new school facilities, described by headmistress Julie Harrison as the perfect space in which pupils can learn, provide the 440 pupils with a new sports hall, an IT suite and state-of-the-art classrooms.
BS 8418 is a Code of Practice for the installation and remote monitoring of detector activated CCTV systems. It set outs recommendations on best practice for the design, installation, commissioning and operation of detector activated CCTV systems. Official Police policy is to only issue Unique Reference Numbers to CCTV systems which comply with BS 8418, to overcome the problems with false alarms.
“GBSG are great to work with, they give us genuine advice and their best appraisal of the situation, backed up with clear costs. I always know where I stand, and have had a very good working relationship over the years.”
Rob Martin, Lead Consultant, Mouchel.