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An all-round winner

An all-round winner
Embrace Building Wraps has installed the UK’s first PVC-free printed scaffold wrap at Newson’s Yard in London’s Belgravia for client Grosvenor Estate.

The company digitally printed and then installed the first of two scaffold banners at the refurbishment site using Kavalan Sunlight Weldable PVC-free banner available exclusively from CMYUK.

Measuring 26m x 4.5m, the wrap features an image of a Robanna print on cotton supplied by Fermoie, local creators of stunning original fabrics which has premises nearby. The second banner will be installed later this month.

 Embrace Building Wraps was founded in 2006, and provides a comprehensive project management, creative print, installation, maintenance and removal service for all large format scaffold, building wraps and printed graphics for site holdings.

It is an approved subcontractor to a wide range of well-established contractors, including Multiplex, Bouygues UK, Byrne Group, Balfour Beatty, Kier, McLaren, Sir Robert McAlpine, Costain and Vinci Construction and also works with numerous demolition and fit-out specialists, as well as property developers including Erith, Knight Harwood, 8build, Argent Design, Grosvenor Estates, The Cadogan Estate, The Duchy of Cornwall and The Crown Estate, while Selfridges, John Lewis and The Lexicon in Bracknell are amongst its retail clients.

“As one of the UK’s leading printed building and scaffold wrap project management companies, we have been working extremely hard to find an effective and durable PVC-free solution for our clients,” says Embrace Building Wraps’ Managing Director, MD, Greg Forster.

“I’ve been looking for a credible environmental alternative since we started in 2006 but there’s never been anything suitable. What we deal in is large scale graphics, and when you start putting these wraps together, they act like giant sails, so we need a material that is able to withstand everything that Mother Nature throws at it!”

 Embrace conducted its own internal extensive like-for-like testing of Kavalan Sunlight in order for the material to become one of its approved products.

The first evaluation compared Kavalan’s print quality with the company’s solid PVC product that Embrace usually used and both substrates were printed with the same test image and placed side by side. Greg commented: “We were delighted to observe that the quality matched and that there was no discernible difference.

Next, Kavalan Sunlight underwent rigorous heat and vibration welding testing, which it also passed with flying colours. This was followed by a comparative pull test to demonstrate tensile strength, with Kavalan and the incumbent PVC product both registering similar results.

Kavalan Sunlight is fire-rated with EN 13501-1 and B1 classification. However, Embrace also invested in two additional flammability tests – BS 5867 Type B, with and without ink – with world-leading inspection, testing, verification and certification company, SGS in the UK and once again, Kavalan proved itself in these evaluations.

However, Kaalan also offered one clear advantage; although it has the look and feel of traditional PVC, Kavalan is up to 50 percent lighter, which means that it’s easier to wield, and has a lower carbon footprint when transported.

Greg continued: “We were pleasantly surprised. The lads on the site found it easier to lift these banners into place when compared with our usual material and when you look at our whole Kavalan testing process, it ticked every single box.”

 Embrace has long been upcycling spent printed PVC into second-life applications through its Banner Karma scheme and has an agreement with the National Farmers’ Union to provide used PVC banner for agricultural usage – free of charge.

Kavalan is an end-of-life responsible material, designed expressly for waste-to-energy processes as it can be incinerated without any harmful emissions to health or the environment. It too, can also be incorporated into the Banner Karma initiative, but with its final end being clean energy rather than landfill.

 Accordingly, Greg believes that Kavalan will become a specified material amongst his client base very quickly, and has already received a number of enquiries since the Newson’s Yard installation.

Grosvenor Estate has now been joined by Allum & Sidaway, a jewellers and bridal boutique in Salisbury, which has the distinction of being the first business outside London to use Kavalan Sunlight for a three-sided, single piece digitally printed scaffold wrap.

 Greg concluded: “Sustainability is a really important part of our business as a collective responsibility for our staff, our supply chain and also for our clients, especially those operating within in construction sector, who always want to be seen to offer an environmentally-friendly solution.

“We have added Kavalan Sunlight to our approved list of materials. It’s an eco-friendly credible solution that is suitable for use with many of our clients’ projects, with the extra benefit that it eliminates the need for further landfill – as far as we are concerned it’s an all-round winner!”

 For further information on Embrace Building Wraps, visit:

 For further information on CMYUK, visit:

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