Innovative plaster products from Knauf Drywall have simplified and accelerated the development of a purpose-built £3 million plus entertainment complex for Cofton Holiday Park, the award-winning four star holiday park near Dawlish, Devon. The new complex will cater for up to 2,000 people and features indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a country bar, function room, amusement arcade, gym and soft play area.

Knauf Drywall Cofton Park

The new facility is a major investment for the family-owned holiday park that will extend its season through offering facilities that are not affected by the weather and will also support its drive for five star status.

Knauf Airless Spray Plaster in particular was invaluable for plastering the ceilings in the country bar and for the first floor family room, both of which have  areas over  500m2 and are 3m high. Peter Alderson, Director of main contractors Devon Contractors, said that the product offered significant benefits in terms of both finish and time.

“The original specification called for the ceilings to be taped and jointed, but we were concerned that sunlight from large glazed screens on both levels would show up imperfections and tape lines commonly associated with the tape and jointing method,” he explained.  “The alternative would have been to skim the ceilings which would have been difficult without day joints due to the expansive areas and costly in terms of time and money because scaffold would have been required. We found the spray plaster which was applied from a tower platform to be the perfect solution, not only is the application quick, the finish is excellent and allows the continuation the following day without the use of day joints leaving a perfectly flat ceiling.”

The Knauf Airless plaster also simplified achieving the ambitious and imaginative ceiling and bulkhead designs developed by ARA Architects, according to Kevin Smith, director of CAP (Ceilings & Partitions).

“The bulkheads are complex forms, being curved and featuring lighting troughs and ellipses among other shapes, so it would be difficult to achieve a good finish using traditional skim plaster,” he said. “The Knauf Airless plaster is not only easy to apply but has other advantages – it is pre mixed, has a low water content of just 28%, so it dries more quickly. It also dries white, so it requires less paint for the decorative finish.”

Knauf Airless plaster is one of the four products in Knauf Drywall’s range of Readymix Plasters that are specifically designed for fast-track construction programmes and can significantly cut on-site timescales while improving health and safety with no mess, fewer movements and no water required.

Less prone to chips and cracks than traditional plaster, they offer an excellent quality finish and are supplied pre-mixed to the correct consistency for spray application, no direct water supply is required on site and wastage is less than 1%. Up to 1,000m2 per week can be finished by a three man gang, and surfaces can be emulsioned within 24 to 48 hours, so the plaster can be applied by the same teams applying the paint finishes.


The range also meets the increased need to demonstrate sustainability: reduced waste, in terms of material on site – less than 1%; packaging (being recyclable plastic) and, more particularly, water on site. Furthermore, any waste material requires little or no waste stream management; and transport requirements are reduced with one 25kg bag covering up to 20m² of wall.

The holiday park’s new swimming pools also feature Knauf Aquapanel Interior and Knauf Aquapanel Interior skim coat for the walls and ceilings. “This is ideal for this application because the product is impervious to water, doesn’t grow mould or delaminate so you won’t get any problems two years down the road,” commented Mr Smith.

Robust and easy to install, Knauf Aquapanel Interior eradicates the costly effects of tile failures in bathrooms and other wet areas. The glass fibre reinforced cement board is completely unaffected by water and maintains its strength even when fully immersed. The ideal complement to ceramic, mosaic or natural stone tiles, Knauf Aquapanel Interior is easy to install and can be cut using the “score and snap” technique, so it does not require any special cutting tools or pre-drilling.

Elsewhere in the new clubhouse and family rooms Knauf’s standard 12.5mm wallboard was installed, with Knauf Fireshield being uses to provide compartmentalisation for the corridors and exits. In total, the project involved 3000m2 of Knauf plasterboard, 300m2 of Knauf Aquapanel Interior, 400m2 of Fireshield and 2000m2 Knauf Airless plaster.