Specifier Review

Quick change for Elta at Alexander McQueen

Ten units from UK fan manufacturer Elta Fans have featured in the recent refurbishment of the latest London retail outlet for McQ, the high-end contemporary brand from the luxury fashion house Alexander McQueen.  London architectural practice Pod was employed to re-design the interior layout of number 14 Dover Street, a five-storey Georgian townhouse in the heart of Mayfair.  Building tenant, McQ, part of the internationally renowned Alexander McQueen brand, wanted the building interior – which consisted of ground-level retail space and four office floors – transformed from the original, narrow, intricate and mazelike layout into a single, open series of connected retail space across all five floors.  The Elta units were intended to provide emergency smoke extraction and pressurisation of the lift shafts and stairwells for the newly refurbished layout.

The order, for the two long-cased Smokevent Axial 1250mm fans and eight long-cased Axial 500mm fans from Elta Fans secured through distributor SK Sales of Thanet, was initially placed as single units.  But a last-minute change of plan saw the fans to be used as ‘Run & Standby’ pairs in ‘Series Set’. This meant that the two units intended to provide pressurisation within the lift shafts, had to be changed to 560mm fans bolted together and supplied with larger motors. The remaining six original 500mm units, which were for the pressurisation of the stairwells, simply required the necessary change of blade angle carried out at Elta’s Kingswinford factory, to enable them to be bolted together for use in tandem within the required set-up.

M&E sub-contractor for the prestigious project was HSE Building Services based in London Bridge. The main consultant was London-based firm Kehr & Tucker who specified the use of Elta Fans’ units from the outset.  Elta Fans’ long-cased SmokeVent fans are of robust, heavy-duty construction to offer strength and durability.  Unit casings are heavy-gauge, sheet steel, roll-formed, welded and hot-dip galvanized.  The range has been specifically developed for emergency smoke extraction as part of the main extraction system or as dedicated units for the emergency clearance of smoke or fumes.  The adjustable-pitch, aerofoil-section impellers have blades made from high-quality, die-cast aluminium.

The all metal, long-cased 500mm Elta Axial fan is also of a very durable and robust construction. The casings are constructed from a heavy-gauge, mild-sheet steel, rolled, spun flanged and fully welded, then hot-dip galvanised to BS EN ISO 1461:2009 after fabrication.  Motors and adjustable-pitch, axial impellers are both mounted within the length of the casing – the impellers being factory-set to meet specific customer requirements and supplied with blades made from high quality cast aluminium, GRP or carbon-loaded composite.

Mark Pucknell, Manager of the Thanet branch of SK Sales, remarked: “We have long had a very good working relationship with Elta Fans.  Naturally we were in continual contact with them throughout the ordering and manufacturing process.  As a result, all alterations and revisions were fully discussed before implementation, drawing on the expertise and experience of ourselves, plus that of Elta which includes manufacturing bespoke fan units.  This ensured a successful installation in this very prestigious project, with all the changes achieved quickly and efficiently to ensure they did not impact on the store’s opening date.”

McQ is part of the luxury fashion house  founded by the late British fashion designer and couturier, (Lee) Alexander McQueen, best known for his in-depth knowledge of bespoke British tailoring, and the energy of his provocative shows.  McQ is a contemporary brand founded in 2005, distilling the vision of current creative director Sarah Burton into youthful, modern pieces that draw on the archive of the house. Sarah Burton designed the dress worn by Kate Middleton during her wedding to Prince William in April, 2011.