Summer News 2011

Summer News 2011

summer NewsletterWe have three great stories of recent canopy installations, an introduction to our fantastic new range of play products and cycle racks and some really cool links for children, schools and parents.

We have also included an introduction to our new funding guide.

If you have any comments or questions relating to anything in this newsletter please feel free to leave a comment below.

“Our Awning Has Made a Huge Difference to Our Pre-School.”

The staff and children at Freethorpe & District Pre School in Norwich are really feeling the benefits of their all-new waterproof retractable awning installed by the canopy experts Able Canopies.

The Pre School which is based at Freethorpe School opened in 2009 and has since gone from strength to strength caring for up to 24 children per session. “We are continually looking to improve our setting to ensure that we are providing a fun and stimulating learning environment for our children, which is in line with the aims of Ofsted and the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum that we follow” explains Lisa Anguish, Pre School Chairperson.

“We decided to have a retractable awning installed to enable better usage of our outdoor area. The children love going outdoors but weather conditions meant that this was not always possible. The awning is waterproof and offers a minimum of 97% UV protection so will keep our children safe in all weather conditions.” The Pre School chose an electrical awning which is remote controlled with a heater.

Freethorpe & District Pre School is a registered charity and rely heavily on fundraising activities to sustain the setting. The staff had been working hard to raise enough funds for their awning organising various fun events which the children took part in. They was also fortunate to receive funding from the NR13 Project which is a community safety initiative organised by Broadland District Council.

The children use the awning for various activities including planting, painting outdoors as well as sand and water activities. The awning also allows general free flow access to the outdoor area giving the children much more freedom and access to the fresh air.

“Having our awning in place has made a huge difference to our pre-school. The children are able to have much more access to the outdoors which they love. We have been able to do more outdoor activities such as planting seeds and growing vegetables, and offer new fun and stimulating learning opportunities whilst enjoying the benefits of being outside. It is even better than we anticipated and we have received lots of positive feedback from the community. The children love it and we have been able to build it into a learning opportunity for them as they recognise the importance of keeping safe in the sun.” – Laura Saunders, Pre School Manager

Able Canopies supply, manufacture and install quality canopies, awnings and shelters specialising in the education sector. The staff at Freethorpe & District Pre School were very satisfied with the service and product received from Able Canopies “The staff were all very friendly and helpful and the service we received was efficient and professional.

“We Can Play in Any Weather” At Wordsley Preschool & Playgroup

Children and staff of Wordsley Preschool & Playgroup in Stourbridge celebrate the results of their brand new state-of-the-art shade sail system.

Following the installation of a new canopy attached to the preschool, the nursery is enjoying another exciting addition; a colourful and contemporary shade sail in the garden area.

Nicky Bailey, manager of Wordsley Preschool, and the rest of the staff are thrilled with the new canopies, which were funded by The Early Years Capital Grant.

“We have recently had some fencing put up to border the land at the front of the nursery, enabling the children to have free flow in and out of the garden – the only thing against them was the weather,” explains Nicky. “Since the installation of the new canopy and the shade sail, the children are protected from the sun and bitter elements during the colder months. It’s changed the whole face of the outside area, giving the nursery a really modern aesthetic.”

Both the wall mounted canopy and the vibrant shade sail were designed, manufactured and fitted by leading schools supplier Able Canopies. Able Shade Sails, which are available in a wide range of colours and offer extremely high levels of UV protection combined with strength and durability, have also become very popular in parks, picnic areas, car parks, restaurants and pubs.

Along with the quality of design and manufacture, Able Canopies’ team of fitters are all CRB checked and have received extensive health and safety training.
“The service provided by Able Canopies was of an excellent standard; the canopy and shade sail were erected with little disruption and in a very short space of time,” says Nicky. “We would definitely recommend Able Canopies to any other establishment and look forward to developing the outside area further – enhancing the excellent results already in place!”

Cool Links – Games, Crafts in the Sunshine, After-School Recipes and More…

Our teams are always on the look out for fun and exciting links, making education fun for kids, schools and parents!

Check out the links below:

  • Heros for kids – A new website full of fun things for kids including: games, stories, competitions, printable colouring pages and much more. You can also send in your own drawings to be shown on the website’s drawing gallery.
  • Kaboose A website full of recipes including a section for after-school snack that kids can make.
  • Primary Games“The fun place to learn” A website full of fun and educational games for primary school children including easy to make crafts.
  • Family Education A large list of fun outdoor activities for children between the ages of 6-10.
  • Enchanted Learning 1000’s of craft projects for children to make including how to make a fire truck form a carbaord box and how to make your very own farm using a range of recyclable materials – Why not try making crafts in the sunshine under your canopy.

If you find something interesting or fun here why not tell others about it, or include them in your next schools newsletter : )

Hurstpierpoint – All-Weather Walkway

  • Case Study: Hurstpierpoint College, Hassocks, West Sussex
  • Product: The Kendal Cantilever Walkway
  • Size: 5m x 24m
  • Additional Options: Powder Coated Racing Green Red

Hurstpierpoint College required a canopy to provide shelter at the front of their nursery, and contacted Able Canopies for their advice and help. Initially the College enquired about a waterproof Shade Sail installation, yet they were not too sure. Able Canopies arranged a surveyor to complete a free full site survey to discuss their options and the type of canopy he felt would be most suitable for their needs and budget.

After the survey had been completed the college needed to decide between the product they liked the most: The Keswick Cantilever Umbrella and The Kendal Cantilever Walkway – both being waterproof tensile fabric structures.

Hurstpierpoint College decided on the Kendal Cantilever Walkway as it is a very attractive canopy and it could span greater lengths. The College had also discussed the possibility of installing their own foundations as they had ongoing building works on site and felt it would be easier to use their own contractors.  Able Canopies agreed that this would create an opportunity to work alongside another Contractor, who was already established on site at the college.

Able Canopies recruited a Structural Engineer, to provide all the structural calculations for the walkway. The structural engineer worked closely with Able Canopies fabrication engineers, the onsite contractors and Able Canopies Contracts Department.  The Structural Engineer provided calculations for either a ‘piled base’ or a slab foundation system.  The school and their own Contractors decided that they wanted to install the foundations using piles.  All parties worked together to ensure that this stage of the installation went smoothly.  One of the problems with using this type of pile cap is that there is a very small margin for error when installing the bolt cage at the top of the pile.  Able Canopies worked alongside the Structural Engineer to design a bolt cage which allowed the correct amount of movement needed making it a perfect fit.

Product Facts – The Kendal Cantilever Walkway

• Waterproof tensile roof
• Unmatched strength with a weight of 590 g/sqm
• Standard 3m, 4m and 5m widths and an unlimited length
• Roof fabric available in 40 colours
• High UV protection
• Ease of maintenance with a consistently smooth appearance
• Supported by maintenance free tubular steel posts which have a diameter of 180mm upwards depending on the size of the tensile roof
• Steel posts can be powder coated to the colour of your choice
• Posts can be galvanised if required for ultimate corrosion protection


Download our Product Brochure

Able Canopies Ltd. design, manufacture and install commercial grade canopies, shade sails,
awnings and shelters across the UK. We specialise in servicing the education, leisure,
healthcare and retail sectors and have extensive experience working with
schools, councils, architects and contracting firms.
For more information on our products and services please contact us

Follow us on our social media accounts for the latest funding advice, new products & latest news:
Twitter | Facebook | Google + | Linked In