KML Win Dulux Connect Award For Putting Sustainability At Heart Of Arts Centre Renovation


The Battersea Arts Centre has been enriching the lives of the local community for approaching half a century. 

But a devastating fire in 2015 forced it to close its doors, landing a significant blow to the cultural landscape of London and its countless visitors from across the capital and beyond.

In 2017, London-based painting contractor KML Decorators were brought on board by main contractor 8Build to help bring the venue back to life.

Exterior Battersea Art Centre
Exterior Battersea Art Centre

They carried out all interior and exterior decorating, including the letter writing of external signage, on the Grand Hall gallery and the turret on the top of the building - ensuring the highest environmental standards were at the heart of the process.

KML Managing Director Simon Knowles explains: “Focusing on sustainability is the way we approach every project.

“We recycle our paint and we dispose of it responsibly. We weren't just throwing cans in the skip, we were collecting them and returning them with the Dulux Decorator Centre can recycling scheme.”

To ensure the project was as sustainable as possible, KML also used low-VOC and water-based paints, such as Intercryl 525 protective coating from AkzoNobel’s International® brand, which contains fewer pollutants and at the same time results in better air quality for those who are applying it.

This approach resulted in KML being awarded the Dulux Connect Award for Sustainable Approach To A Project.

KML’s Kay Adams adds: “Winning the Dulux Connect Award is a recognition of the things that we work hard to do as a business in being environmentally sound, and sustainability is part of that.

“Year on year, sustainability becomes more important and talked about and the targets the construction industry has to meet are quite clearly set out, so we have to keep that in mind with every project.

“Going forward, we're trying to be more aware of it, so we do more recycling now and the products we use are also getting better, with lower VOCs and helping to clean the air, and there’s more availability to us to lessen the environmental impact in the industry.”

The team at KML also received fantastic feedback from both 8Build and Battersea Arts Centre on the finished project, which they completed in July 2018.

Simon recalls: “At its peak we had about 20 people on site.

“We had to do spraying work so we had a spray team on site, we had sign writers and general decorators.

“In some areas they wanted to leave the fire damage to show the history of the centre. The areas we were in were newly plastered areas, so there was a real mix of new and old in the building.

“The Battersea Arts Centre was very happy with the work that we did. 

“It was used as a community space and it's gone from a fire-wrecked building to being back open so everyone's very happy with it - it's a very community based project.”

To find out more about KML, visit: 

Exterior Battersea Art Centre
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