Architecture and design practice KSS were appointed to redesign the changing suite for Premier League Southampton Football Club. Rockfon® Mono® Acoustic was chosen to help ensure the perfect environment for pre-match preparedness at the club’s 32,384 seater St Mary’s Stadium.

Pacy and Wheatley Acoustics Director Craig Wheatley, “We were very pleased to be tasked by KSS to create the innovative ceiling at Southampton FC. Mono Acoustic was the perfect fit for the aesthetic and acoustic requirements of the installation which revolved around a central, elliptical lighting feature.”

Realising the architect’s vision

The curved layout of the changing room space and the high specification brought to every facet of its interior demanded precise engineering and detailing throughout.

KSS Associate Director Michael McCollum commented, Excellent acoustics are fundamental to creating the right atmosphere, and good speech intelligibility is critical. The wall and floor finishes are necessarily of resistant materials, and so the acoustic analysis determined a class A acoustic absorber was required for the ceiling. Rockfon was specified by KSS as it was able to conform readily to the curvilinear geometry of the room and to achieve the double curvature demanded by the central recessed, back lit oculus.  In terms of design, Mono Acoustic provides a high quality, monolithic appearance fulfilling the brief for a single, unifying, neutral ceiling element, enclosing but not dominating the space.”

Design freedom and enhanced performance

ROCKFON Mono Acoustic is a unique product which combines the elegance of a monolithic ceiling with the high performance characteristics and sound absorption previously thought only possible with modular suspended ceilings. To create a continuous finish, the ceiling tile substrate is installed and then finished with a specialist Elegant acoustic render to create an elegant, smooth-white, surface. The ceiling allows for easy incorporation of lighting and audio along with other mechanical systems whilst delivering Class A2 fire protection. The system also offers dimensionally stability at up to 100% relative humidity and can be installed in temperatures ranging from 0˚C to 40˚C.

One team, one dream
Pacy and Wheatley worked alongside high specification fit out and construction specialists, ITS Interiors, in order to realise the envisioned design in a manner fitting for this proud Club whose history stretches back over 135 years.

ITS Director Chris Howe said, Rockfon Mono Acoustic was used to great effect in Southampton FC’s state-of-the-art changing rooms. We constructed the ceiling substrate, including the bespoke central elliptical former, off-site in kit form. Once this was installed and painstakingly prepared, the Pacy and Wheatley team applied the Elegant Render. We then installed the illuminated ceiling section to create the central focal point. ”

Craig Wheatley, “The space does not benefit from natural light, so the fact that ROCKFON Mono Acoustic achieves 87% light reflection and 99% light diffusion, is highly desirable. It provides Class A sound absorption to significantly decrease echo and reverberation, helping create the perfect environment for these elite athletes to communicate with their teammates and to focus.”

Simon Slade of Rockfon enthused, “It’s always exiting to be associated with a high profile client. It also creates a positive pressure to make sure things turn out perfectly. We know that everyone involved with the project worked towards a shared goal and that Southampton FC are not only very pleased with how the space looks but, importantly, how it performs.”

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