British Gypsum inspires creative thinking for Network Rail

October 2017

British Gypsum inspires creative thinking for Network Rail

British Gypsum has used its innovative Thistle Magnetic Plaster to transform Network Rail’s design office in York into a creative and interactive work space.

Network Rail approached British Gypsum with a brief to create an area that would enable team members to work more collaboratively, in line with the organisation’s revised workplace guidelines for its new properties.

The design office in particular needed an area with plenty of room and flexibility to help employees map repair work, plot proposed new routes across the network and even devise new electrical designs. These tasks can require drawings many metres in length, which can’t be easily visualised on a computer screen or on small-scale print outs.

In Network Rail’s previous design office, large whiteboards were fitted on the walls, but these did not provide the necessary space for designs to be effectively developed and revised.

With this in mind, British Gypsum specified Thistle Magnetic Plaster, which was applied to several walls to turn them into magnetised surfaces, allowing documents to be temporarily attached and moved as required. Clear lacquer paint was also used to create a wipe-clean surface that can be written on and amended as needed.

Garry Bimpson, Senior Architectural Technologist, explained: “When creating the space, we wanted to develop a workplace that would engage our employees and support them in their day-to-day roles which, by their very nature as designers, are incredibly creative.

Network rail use Thistle Magnetic Plaster in office space“Using Thistle Magnetic Plaster has allowed us to do just that and the office is now geared towards a collaborative and productive way of working. The plaster and lacquer paint on the walls provide large, re-usable surfaces ideal for developing and amending live large-scale technical designs that all our team members can view and add to straight away. Being able to easily map out ideas in such an interactive way during brainstorms means we don’t need to continually feed into computer documents or share print outs, saving the team a lot of time.”

Following the success of the project, Network Rail has now installed Thistle Magnetic Plaster in its Derby and Edinburgh offices, and has further projects planned across its other sites.

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