Case Study: Top marks for Stannah at two of Kent’s most popular schools!

5 Stannah Maxilift passenger lifts deliver essential people-moving power in two of Kent’s most popular schools.

Dane Court Grammar School

Three Stannah 13-person Maxilift MRLi passenger lifts are providing vital access for all in this mixed, 11-18 grammar school for 1,200 students. Founded in 1957 and an Ofsted 2007 outstanding school in all areas, Dane Court is also a Specialist Language College and was awarded the Intermediate International Schools Award in 2006. A Maxilift provides access over two storeys in the new Sports Hall, with a similar model operating between three floors in the totally refurbished North Wing housing the Humanities, Geography and Maths departments. Another Maxilift operates over three storeys in the ‘Heart’ area of a new building which accommodates Food Technology, Graphics, C.D.T., I.C.T., Sciences and English, a library and offices.

St George’s Church of England Foundation School

Two 13-person Maxilift MRLi passenger lifts are also providing access for all in this mixed, 11-18 Business & Enterprise secondary school for 1,200 students opened by the Bishop of Dover in 2010. A Maxilift provides access over two storeys in the new multi-functional atrium, or Heart, area of the school; with a sister model operating between two floors in the technology area.

Building Schools for the Future

Part of the ‘Building Schools for the Future’ initiative – a £55 billion school buildings investment programme that was axed just 6 years into an estimated 15-20 year lifespan – Dane Court and St George’s were radically transformed in 2010 at a total cost of circa £43 million.

Working with Kier Regional

The key contractor for the BSF schools in this area is Kier Regional, part of the Kier Group – a leading construction, development and service group specialising in building and civil engineering, support services, public and private house building, property development and the Private Finance Initiative (PFI). Kier Regional offers a wide network of UK construction businesses which combines local knowledge with national presence enabling it to respond to a wide range of markets and sectors. Stannah has worked in partnership with Kier Regional on numerous projects. This ongoing alliance, together with sound experience of providing lifts for the education sector, has ensured that both Dane Court and St George’s are fit for the 21st century.

“Massive investment is helping us to maintain and develop the educational standards that have helped us rank as one of the 100 most improved schools nationally and in the top 10 for CVA throughout Kent. The Stannah Maxilift passenger lifts are providing an invaluable and secure support service, opening up the whole school for anyone who cannot use the stairs.”
Kim Stoner, Principal, St George’s C of E Foundation School


…on Stannah Maxilift specification

Main contractor, Kier Regional, specified the hydraulic, wall-mounted Maxilift MRLi for its economical style and rugged reliability. With full-height headroom, downlighter-effect ceiling and half-height mirror, it is available in a choice of neutral colour schemes, with a number of optional extras which can be added to enhance the interior finish.

…on MRLi flexibility

By housing the drive system and controller in the pit, the MRLi is a truly motor room-less lift. This saves space, conserves good looks and improves performance whilst reducing building and operating costs. Additional benefits include low headroom, low pit and a structure-supported shaft.

MRLi @ Dane Court: the hydraulic oil container is located in the lift pit, with the controller in a wall-mounted cupboard next to the lift. This ‘adjacent remote’ feature means the controller can be sited up to 5 metres away if necessary, which conserves the aesthetic appearance of the lift fascia.

MRLi @ St George’s: the hydraulic oil container is also located in the lift pit, but the controller is located at ground-floor level, recessed into the lift shaft wall on the right-hand side of the lift, with a firewall behind it for added protection.

…on Hydraulic-drive

For low to medium rise applications, hydraulic is the drive of choice for many reasons, including:

Emergency release – a simple push-button function allows the lift to lower automatically, making it safer for the lift owner and the lift engineers.

Reduced maintenance costs – fewer pulleys and shorter lengths of wire ropes reduce wear and tear, making components last longer with less lifetime costs.

Energy saving – hydraulically driven lifts only use power in the upward action; gravity controls the lifts’ descent, with a nominal amount of energy operating the valves.

Environmentally friendly – hydraulic oil has a very long lifespan, often matching the longevity of the lift itself. If it ever needs replacing, it can be recycled or used to power electricity generation.

Reduced building costs – there is no need for an expensive, reinforced load-bearing lift shaft as all the heavy loading is transmitted to the pit. Consequently, fewer lifting beams are required, saving on time and finances.

…on Security

All five lifts can only be accessed by card-carrying staff and mobility compromised students, maximising security and appropriate use of the lifts. The card proximity units were also installed by Stannah as part of the contract.

…on Equality

By making the brand new educational facilities totally accessible for anyone who would find it difficult, if not impossible, to use the stairs, the Maxilifts guarantee that both Dane Court and St George’s meet the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.

…on Sustainability

BRE Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) is the leading and most widely used environmental assessment method for buildings. It sets the standard for best practice in sustainable design and has become the de facto measure used to describe a building’s environmental performance. Stannah passenger lifts, escalators and moving walkways can generate BREEAM credits which can help buildings achieve the best possible environmental rating. This project was designed to help the two schools achieve a ‘Very Good’ rating. The Stannah Maxilifts generated a BREEAM credit for each school by complying with the following:

  • An analysis of transport demand and patterns for the building had been carried out by the design team to determine the optimum number and size of lifts and counterbalancing ratio on the basis of anticipated passenger demand.
  • The energy consumption for at least two types of lift or lift strategy ‘fit for purpose’ had been estimated and the system with the lowest energy consumption specified.

…on Maintenance

All five Maxilifts were installed with a Stannah 1-year, full maintenance package as part of the contract.

Serviced by the Dartford branch of Stannah Lift Services, a nationwide network providing 24 hour, 365 days a year support, this covers service, repair, modernisation and refurbishment of all types of lifts, stairlifts, escalators and moving walkways – not only those from the Stannah product range, but also other lift manufacturers’ equipment.

Stannah also offers a bespoke lifts service, custom-building lifts to meet customers’ specific requirements.

…on the Stannah Promise

Stannah is committed to delivering:

  • The best quality products
  • Superior service
  • Good value for money
  • And, last but not least, complete reliability

…and on a 150-year lift manufacturing pedigree