In The News – Work starts on the new Cineworld in Hounslow as the first phase of the High Street Quarter’s major regeneration project.

The ten-screen multiplex cinema will be built using over 1,300t of hot rolled steelwork and will be fully acoustically isolated using the Farrat CineFLOOR PRO and CineSTEEL PRO systems.

BHC Steelwork - Cineworld Hounslow starts on site

When designing an auditorium, it is critical that the acoustic performance of the cinema screen is not compromised by rigid connection to any surrounding structures.

Systems within the CineFLOOR and CineSTEEL ranges ensure that the most important secondary structures in a cinema are kept totally independent of the main structure, the structural floor slab and any adjacent screens. This keeps cinema sound where it belongs and prevents unwanted noise intrusion.


Isolating Cinema Floors:


Isolating Cinema Raked Seating and Steelwork:

  • CineSTEEL PRO is a NEW grade of high-performance sound insulation developed by Farrat, used to isolate cinema raked seating and secondary steelwork structures.
  • CineSTEEL is primarily intended for use with concrete stadia and is is widely compatible with a variety of steel frame type and baseplate/bolt combinations.
  • If you’d like to learn more about the Farrat CineSTEEL range ahead of launch, please contact our Building Acoustics Team here.

Farrat has designed and delivered acoustic isolation solutions for many of the world’s largest and most striking multiplex cinema projects and the Building Acoustics team at Farrat has decades of experience creating state-of-the-art acoustic environments within cinemas.

For further information:

Farrat supply Structural Thermal Breaks to insulate connections across a 15,000t steelwork package, being erected at the new Edinburgh St James retail scheme

Edinburgh St James with egg shaped W Hotel

Edinburgh St James is one of the most significant construction and regeneration projects currently under way in the UK and the largest city centre development Edinburgh has seen for decades.

The £1bn project is replacing a 1960s shopping centre with 79,000m² of new retail space, alongside a new five-star W Hotel, an Aparthotel, 152 prime residential apartments, more than 30 restaurants and the city’s first Everyman Cinema.

Numerous column grid patterns requiring hundreds of tonnes of transfer structures, are helping to create the large retail-led mixed-use scheme, with a steelwork package totalling 15,000t of steel being fabricated by the appointed steelwork contractor BHC.

Following specification by the Architect, Farrat are set to supply over £90k of Farrat TBK Structural Thermal Breaks to thermally separate steel connections across buildings in the project.

Edinburgh St James main retail mall, which sits above a car park
Edinburgh St James - smaller residential grid sits above the retail elements of the project

As of March 2019, BHC had erected approximately one-third of the overall 15,000t of steel, a total that amounts to the company’s largest ever project. The steelwork package is due to complete in June 2020, with the project opening in phases, beginning with the retail and leisure element anticipated to complete in 2020, and the remainder of the development in late 2021 when the W Hotel and residential parts will be ready.

Farrat’s BBA certificated Structural Thermal Break materials provide building design professionals with a robust solution to minimise energy loss. Suitable to mitigate against planar, linear and point load thermal bridging, Farrat Structural Thermal Breaks can be used anywhere a penetration or transition exists in a building envelope to help achieve building performance standards. Performance characteristics include low thermal conductivity, high compressive strength and very limited creep under load.

Full specifications are available for import from NBS Plus.

Farrat Anti-Vibration Materials used to enhance high-speed Hyperloop pod

Our Industrial Team recently supplied undergraduate engineers from Colorado School of Mines, with high-performance Anti-Vibration Materials to dampen vibrations affecting their prototype for the 2019 SpaceX Hyperloop IV Competition.

The competition intends to revolutionize the worlds transportation systems, challenging student teams to design and build a high-speed pod that can be propelled through a low-pressure tube at theoretical speeds of up to 760mph!

Farrat Anti-Vibration Materials will help to stabalise the prototype pod wheels when travelling at high speeds, damping vibrations ranging from 0 to 30 Hz.

We do not want to give too many details of the vibration damping system away ahead of the competition entry submission, so in the meantime, take a look at the competition trailer below or  learn more about Farrat Anti-Vibration Materials for Industrial Applications here.

Designing a resilient support or connection and selecting the correct vibration isolating or damping material for it can be complex, but Farrat’s Industrial Team are here to help. We can guide you in your selection, so that you are confident that the material supplied is the optimum solution.

Please contact us with your specific requirements and we will work with you to develop a solution that considers: performance, longevity, environmental conditions, installation and budget.

Farrat join the British Constructional Steelwork Association (BCSA) as Industry Member

Farrat are now a member of the BCSA

Farrat have been granted Industry Membership to the BCSA following independent assessment of our role as a UK manufacturer and supplier of Structural Thermal Breaks.  

The BCSA is the national organisation for the steel construction industry in the UK.

Industry Members are recognised as principal companies involved in the direct supply of components and materials used in structural steelwork and must have a purchase, design and supply facility within the UK.

Farrat are proud to be joining the BCSA in line with our continued commitment to the steelwork sector as an accredited & reliable manufacturer and a top-tier supplier of Structural Thermal Breaks.

60 Years Farrat – Phil’s Story



Areas Of Expertise: Mechanical Design / Product Development
Education: Bachelor of Product Design
Time at Farrat: 12 Months

What is your role at Farrat?

I am a Mechanical Designer at Farrat Isolevel but my role is varied and impacts multiple areas of the business. Recently, I’ve been working on a number of live Structural Vibration Isolation projects, as well as maintaining and updating drawings / models for Farrat’s Machine Mounts, with the aim to improve the overall quality & clarity of their design.


Tell us about your journey to date?

I’ve always been interested in mechanical design and took this through to university level. In 2015, I graduated from the University of South Australia with a Bachelor of Product Design.

Before joining Farrat, I spent 3 years developing modular building systems for offsite construction and lead the product development of a lightweight, flat-pack building system. This background has proven to be key, with many of Farrat’s products targeted at construction applications.

I’ve been at Farrat for 12 months now. After joining Farrat this time last year, I’ve worked on complex vibration isolation projects and made key design changes to help improve product quality across multiple product ranges. I am continuing to work closely with the quality manager to implement process changes aimed at improving the flow of design data throughout the business.


Tell us about your experience as both a team member & a leader, and what it means to you?

Over the past 12 months feel I have become a respected and trusted member of the technical team here at Farrat. I continue to learn a lot from my immediate colleagues and as my knowledge grows with my time at Farrat, I aim to transition myself into a leadership role.


Phil working on optimising the Farrat LA16 Range

What drives you?

I am an ambitious person with the ability to think outside the box. I enjoy providing innovative ideas to solve restrictive design constraints and I believe I thrive in situations which allow me to focus on finding user centric solutions. Furthermore, I enjoy being able to continually develop new and existing solutions for Farrat’s portfolio of products.

I’m always eager to develop new skills and try to surround myself with people who can support this development. Farrat has proven to be an excellent environment for me, where I work alongside both intelligence and experience.


Are there any memorable projects & initiatives that you’ve worked on at Farrat, that you feel has made an impact?

I have been working to support the implementation of a number of major software changes to help the design office become more efficient as a growing company. We’ve introduced a number of products; Autodesk Inventor as our predominant 3D modelling package and Autodesk Vault to fill a critical requirement as an automated CAD data management system. Once these changes have been fully deployed, they will not only help relieve the strain on the design office and add extra capacity, but provide a rigid process structure for design changes & approvals that will benefit many other departments.

I look forward to seeing this in action and observing the benefits across the company.


Why Farrat?

Still being in the relatively early stages of my career, I know the knowledge and training I gain over the coming years will provide a crucial foundation for my future ambitions. I feel that not only can Farrat provide me with this foundation, but also put in place a pathway to help me achieve these career aspirations at Farrat.

If you would like to hear more about Engineering opportunities at Farrat, visit our Careers Page.

Alternately, get in touch with Phil on: +44 (0) 161 924 1600.

Farrat acoustically isolate the Sky Room Auditorium at Milton Keynes new “architectural gem”

The long-awaited extension of ‘MK Gallery’ in Milton Keynes, opened its doors to the public at the weekend after being hailed as “an architectural gem” by national media.

Designed by two artists in collaboration with London architects 6a, the £12m extension includes five new exhibition galleries and a Sky Room auditorium, acoustically isolated using the Farrat CineFLOOR PRO acoustic floating floor system, which was installed by AcouStruct Ltd.

The Sky Room auditorium is housed in a new building for MK Gallery, which is located at the top end of Midsummer Boulevard where the city meets Campbell Park, establishing the centre of a new arts quarter.

The auditorium will be used for film, performance, lectures and large screenings with a sizable audience capacity, accommodated by sliding bleachers.

Farrat has designed and delivered acoustic isolation solutions for many of the world’s largest and most striking multiplex cinema projects and the Building Acoustics team at Farrat has decades of experience creating state-of-the-art acoustic environments within cinemas.

For further information:

Thermally insulating steelwork at the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas)

CEFAS will incorporate an exposed steel frame that will insulated using farrat structural thermal breaks

Farrat are currently helping to deliver a cost-efficient and sustainable HQ building for the Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (Cefas) by thermally insulating the exposed steel frame using Farrat Structural Thermal Breaks.

Based in the Suffolk, the UK marine science agency Cefas (The Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science) is constructing a new £18.3M contemporary headquarters building. The new headquarters will be a sustainable steel-framed landmark and form a central element of a much larger scheme that also includes the phased floor-by-floor refurbishment of an existing 1980s laboratory building.

The building has a composite design with steelwork supporting metal decking and a concrete topping. Most of the steel frame is based around a regular 6m column spacing, with internal spans of up to 12m.

This was deemed sufficient to provide the new building with modern open-plan office and meeting room spaces.

Farrat were recently contacted by the steelwork contractor to help minimise the risk of thermal bridges forming at several different penetrations and transitions in the building envelope.

CEFAS - Model of the steel frame

CEFAS – Model of the steel frame (courtesy of H Young Structures)


As the complete system needs to be optimised structurally as well as thermally, Farrat are supplying a combination of Farrat TBK and Farrat TBL thermal break plates in a variety of thicknesses and bespoke hole configurations, to ensure that the system is robust as well as thermally efficient.

The high compressive strength and low thermally conductivity properties of these Farrat Structural Thermal Break materials mean that they will transfer high loads and absorb any bending moments or shear forces, whilst acting as a thermal insulator.

The Cefas project is expected to be complete by May 2020.

Farrat’s BBA certificated structural thermal break materials provide building design professionals with a robust solution to minimise energy loss. Suitable to mitigate against planar, linear and point load thermal bridging, Farrat thermal breaks can be used anywhere a penetration or transition exists in a building envelope to help achieve building performance standards. Performance characteristics include low thermal conductivity, high compressive strength and very limited creep under load.

Full specifications are available for import from NBS Plus.

Case Study: Mall of Egypt

Mall of Egypt Case Study - Farrat Acoustic Isolation

Farrat’s new cinema floating floor range, CineFLOOR, was recently used to acoustically isolate the first VOX Cinema in Egypt located inside North Africa’s largest shopping mall. In this Case Study, we overview the acoustic challenge faced by the project team and the solution supplied by Farrat.

The Challenge
The Mall of Egypt, which officially opened in 2017 in Cairo, was developed by Majid Al Futtaim at a cost of USD $708m and is the largest mall in North Africa spanning 400,000 sq.m. The two-story complex brings Egypt’s first VOX Cinema, with a total of 21 theatres housing; 1x 4DX screen, 4x Gold screens, 1x IMAX screen, 2x screens for kids and 13 regular screens.

With a total of 2473 seats, the design and build of the cinema auditorium required expert configuration to ensure maximum entertainment value for viewers inside and minimal disruption to the surrounding 165,000 sq.m of retail space.

The brief was particularly challenging as cinema auditoria were adjacent vertically as well as horizontally.

Farrat were contacted during the design phase to design, manufacture and supply a workable sound insulation system, to acoustically isolate the 21 auditoria to VOX’s high acoustic performance standards.

Mall of Egypt - Site during construction

The Farrat Solution

Following an initial enquiry from the client’s architect, Farrat met with the main contractor and local architect in Egypt as well as the acoustic consultant in the UK, to discuss the full acoustic requirements of the project. It was determined that a minimum Natural Frequency of 12Hz was required within each theatre.

After reviewing the requirements against the Farrat range, Farrat CineFLOOR PRO was identified as the most suitable and versatile grade of acoustic isolation to configure the acoustic floating floors within all 21 auditoria.

CineFLOOR PRO is the most frequently specified grade of cinema isolation, as products within this range offer the highest ratio of acoustic isolation performance vs. price in the market.

The floors were also reinforced using CineWALL PRO as partition isolation – soon to be released to the wider market in 2019.

CineFLOOR PRO - 3D section with labels

Logistics & Installation

Once the CineFLOOR systems were manufactured, Farrat worked closely with AL Dhabi Contracting to liaise importing and installing the systems on site in Egypt.

AL Dhabi Contracting were founded in 1998 and are an authorised Farrat distribution partner in Egypt. AL Dhabi Contracting is also one of the largest drylining companies in the country and represent a number of prestigious UK drylining brands in the region, including Farrat.

Farrat handled all export logistics including packing materials in secure IPPC heat-treated pallets certified for airfreight to Egypt, as well as all export documentation including Certificate of Origin and Certificate of Conformity.

AL Dhabi Contracting then handled all import logistics including customs tariffs and delivery to site.

Once the materials arrived in Egypt, Farrat visited site on a number of occasions to inspect the integrity and placement of the acoustic isolators and to train AL Dhabi’s installation team.

Overseeing the installation process in this manner ensured that all details were correctly constructed and that the acoustic specification was fully achieved.

Mall of Egypt Export Consignment Ready for Air Freight

The Result

All 21 screens are fully acoustically isolated and open to the public at VOX Cinema, Mall of Egypt. Both the architect and the acoustic consultant are satisfied with the quality of the Farrat acoustic detailing, which meets the acoustic specification and the clients high acoustic standards.

Farrat has designed and delivered acoustic isolation solutions for many of the world’s largest and most striking multiplex cinema projects and the Building Acoustics team at Farrat has decades of experience creating state-of-the-art acoustic environments within cinemas.

For further information:

60 Years Farrat – Adriana’s Story

Meet Adriana - Project Delivery Manager at Farrat



Areas Of Expertise: Engineering, Acoustics, Structural, Project Management
Education: Chartered Engineer
Time at Farrat: 3 Years

Tell us about your background?

I’m a civil engineer from Sicily.

I completed my bachelor degree in Catania then I moved to Torino in Italy, where I studied for my Master Degree, after which I worked in Torino for 1 year where I completed my Chartership after graduating.

When I was at school in Sicily I was always interested in Maths and Creative Arts. I had considered becoming a lawyer, but then decided to push my studies towards Architecture and Engineering as they combined my two interests.

My first year at University was focused on Engineering and it was at this point that I realised that engineering is what I wanted to be doing, so I focused on this and took it forward.

I moved to the UK in May 2016 after completing my Chartership in Italy and within the first 6 months I took my engineering role here at Farrat.

This was an exciting time for me.

I speak four languages, with Italian being my native and English, French and German being secondary, but I was nervous about taking a technical role in English as my second language. However, I have found it a great learning experience – especially as Farrat is so multi-cultural, there are a lot of people in our team from different countries, so we get to practice together. Farrat also provided a weekly session with an English tutor that was very beneficial in my first year.


Engineers on Ice - Adriana pictured with Oliver Farrell (CEO Farrat) and Joe Flores (Atkins SNC-Lavalin) at the 2018 ICE Annual Event

Engineers on Ice – Adriana pictured with Oliver Farrell (CEO Farrat) and Joe Flores (Atkins SNC-Lavalin) at the 2018 ICE Annual Event

Why Farrat?

I saw something good for me at Farrat.

It is a family run company where you are continually faced with technical problems and challenged to solve them. That means you are always pushed to learn, as it is your responsibility to solve this problem.

In larger companies, you are not pushed to learn in this way. You are not pushed to challenge yourself and go beyond your limits.

I like that my role challenges me each and every day, I am always learning and looking to discover the best answer for my client.


Do any projects that you’ve worked on at Farrat stand out?

The first big profile acoustic isolation project I worked on was the Royal Academy of Music in London.

When I was reviewing the steel assemblies I was excited because it was more challenging than just standard rubber acoustic isolators and it meant that I was going to be working closely with Ryan our Technical Director to develop this solution.

Working with Ryan is brilliant because he is very calm and experienced. He is always reassuring ‘do not worry, we have the solution, we can do this’. I like this style. He also has great rapport with the clients and is respected amongst his peers such as the structural engineers, acoustic consultants and the contractors. You can learn a lot by working with him.

The first big project that I worked on in structural / building vibration isolation was Regents Crescent in London.

I also started working on 60 Curzon Street at a similar time, which is still ongoing (it is a big project!). So this was another step up for me because I was juggling the two projects at the same time, working with our Technical Director Oliver, who is also our CEO.

St Giles Circus

St Giles Circus in London is currently being constructed around a number of complex site constraints caused by underground rail.

One that I am very proud of is St Giles in London. I knew about the project early on and basically kept asking the client if there is any solution that they need until they finally said yes! They would asked me “why are you asking so early” and my response was always “because I know that at least if we start now and prepare the proposal early it gives us a lot of time to adapt to any challenges quickly”.

This actually was the best thing because the site did turn out to be very challenging. We definitely prepared the proposal at the right time because we spent almost a year adapting around unforeseen constraints and have avoided any major delays due to being well prepared.

We actually delivered everything for that project last week, so I felt very proud to see them being dispatched from the yard.


What were the key challenges for you on this project?

This was something new in a sense of managing the relationship with the client.

My role evolved to act as the connection between our engineering team and the client, making sure everyone is happy within two very big project teams.

I realised how difficult it is to communicate and prioritise everyone’s needs on large projects. I always work to make sure that the client receives the best possible customer service, but I also have to ensure that the team working for me receives that same level of service and respect.

So learning how to be a bridge between teams was a great skill I learnt on this project.

What are you working on now that St Giles has been dispatched?

Now I am focusing on the big projects for structural / building vibration isolation.

More and more projects are now being constructed above or adjacent to underground/over ground rail and this is where our solutions are absolutely critical to mitigate against the vibrations.

We are very busy with this type of project and we are really doing something special for these. For example one project, Anthology in London, we are delivering within just 4.5 months.

If you had told me we would be doing that when I first started at Farrat I would have asked “how is that even possible?!”, because 4.5 months is nothing, it is very fast when you have to consider the design and the manufacture. But in this project we are manufacturing and delivering some items whilst others are still in design phase, so it is really a great effort.

There are also some other big projects coming through, I cannot say what they are yet but just that it is a big year for our structural team! We are finding that a lot of people are now coming to us because of word of mouth and recommendation, which is always great and makes me proud of the work we are delivering.


What are your ambitions for the future?

Well, I want to be a flamenco dancer! (laughs), as I have always liked theater and cinema – it is really a passion of mine other than engineering.

I am also trying to be the best engineer that I can be and continue to learn and progress in project management.


And finally, what drives you to come into work at Farrat each day?

My ethics.

My client has come to me because he needs this solution and I have told him that he can have it on this date. I gave my word to him, I have made a promise and so I must stick to it.

I believe that attitude is so important. You must have good ethics to be in this role and you simply cannot let people down.

If you would like to hear more about Engineering opportunities at Farrat, visit our Careers Page.

Alternately, get in touch with Adriana in our Building Acoustics Team on: +44 (0) 161 924 1600.

Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety

Building Regulations and Fire - Farrat Independent Review



February 14, 2019
Author: Chris Lister, Commercial Manager

Synopsis of amendment

Following the recent amendment to the Building Regulations for Fire (England & Wales) SI 2018/1230 Farrat have been looking at the implications for Structural Thermal Break materials in the new legislation.

The statutory Instrument, issued in Dec 2018 sets out the effective prohibition of combustible materials in the external walls of high rise residential buildings over 18 meters. The amendment implements these changes via explicit regulation rather than guidance, making it an effective ban on any materials not reaching the prescribed certified standard.

The standard for prescribing performance in this case is BS EN 13501-1:2007+A1:2009 entitled “Fire classification of construction products and building elements. Classification using test data from reaction to fire tests” The prescribed level of performance required under this standard for use over 18 meters is European Classification A2-s1, d0 or A1.

BS EN 13501-1 defines the classes A1 and A2 as follows:

  • Class A1 will not contribute in any stage of the fire, including the fully developed fire.
  • Class A2 Will not significantly contribute to the fire load and the fire growth in a fully developed fire

The characteristics “s” and “d” are defined as follows:

  • s1 Weak or no smoke
  • s2 Medium Smoke
  • s3 High Smoke
  • d0 No dripping at all
  • d1 Slow dripping recorded
  • d2 High dripping recorded

The amendment only recognises classifications from European Norm standard. The older British Standard classification, which was recognised in previous guidance, is not included in the new regulation.

The New regulation applies to the building external envelope or specified attachments such as, balconies, bris solei or solar panels on ‘relevant’ dwellings, residential or institutional buildings above 18 meters or 6 storeys. Where the building is a hotel or hostel, boarding house or any other building type above 18 meters the regulations revert to the current Approved Document B requirements for fire of limited combustibility A2,-s3, d2 or better.

Within the new regulation for ‘relevant’ buildings above 18 meters, some building elements of the external envelope are exempt from the A1 & A2 fire performance rating.

This exemption includes door and window frames, glazing, fixings, gaskets and significantly for Farrat, thermal break materials.

Significance of the amendment to Building Regulations for Structural Thermal Breaks

Following their exemption from the recently amended standard for a fire classification, Structural Thermal Break materials, as currently supplied into the UK construction sector and deemed to be for the purpose of meeting the thermal bridging requirements of Approved Document L, can continue to be used under their existing limitations.

However, as with previous base line regulatory exemption, where building designers identify fire performance of construction materials as a higher significance factor, the testing and classification of all component’s planned for use will come under scrutiny.

To this end, alongside the continued development of new materials with Structural and Thermal properties, performance in respect of fire has become a main element in product manufacturers list of required characteristics.

As with all insulating materials there is generally a trade-off between insulation value and structural integrity. In the field of structural thermal breaks this balance is critical. Where structural performance is elevated to pole position, the goal is to achieve as good a thermal conductivity as possible without compromising structural properties.

With the introduction of fire into the equation the balance becomes three way, with Structural performance required to be maintained in the event of a fire whilst still functioning as a thermal break under everyday conditions.

The development of a new Structural Thermal Break material by Farrat has achieved this.

Farrat has utilised it’s full material R&D capabilities to develop the UK’s first Fire-Resistant Structural Thermal Break material: Farrat TBF.

If you’re interested in learning more about Farrat’s TBF Fire-Resistant Structural Thermal Break material ahead of the official launch,  please contact Chris Lister, Commercial Manager, on

Chris Lister, Commercial Manager at Farrat

T: +44 (0) 161 924 1602
LinkedIn: Chris Lister



Joining our UK office in October 2018, Chris is an Associate Member of RIBA and life member of Port Sunlight Rugby Club as Chairman.

Chris has over 30 years experience working within the UK Construction Product sector and leads our Thermal Breaks Team in the UK.

Areas Of Expertise: Product Design, Project Management, R&D
Time at Farrat: 6 Months