Ottakar's is one of the countries leading book chains. When it started in 1987, the ambition was to create a chain of bookshops offering high levels of range and service. The formula obviously works as there are now ninety-two Ottakar's stores throughout Great Britain. The company recently opened a second shop in Edinburgh. Located on George Street, the store trades on three floors. Mindful of its responsibilities under the terms of the Disability Discrimination Act, a Companion Prestige platform lift, supplied by Leicester-based movemanSKG, has been installed providing alternative access to the upper floors.
As a national book chain, Ottakar's strives to offer the same levels of choice and service across the country. Each store is, on the other hand, encouraged to retain its own individual identity. Kate Mitchell is the companies Property Manager. "We design our stores to suit the needs of the communities they serve." She says. "For example, the new Edinburgh store stocks a comprehensive selection of Scottish books. We also make every effort to ensure that all areas of the store are available to everybody. Lifts for the less able are an essential part of the refurbishment plans for our multi-floor sites."
movemanSKG Prestige platform lift is the ideal choice for inclusion in refurbishment projects, where a traditional passenger lift is not practical. It has a self-supporting shaft and requires very little building work to install. The Prestige operates on a 240-volt single phase power supply and normally requires a shallow 50mm pit . In this particular instance, it was not possible to dig a pit and so the lift is surface mounted with ramped access to the ground floor entrance.
At the George Street site, the installation is as unobtrusive as possible. The lift fits neatly into the existing stairwell and the shaft is glazed on three sides, reducing its overall impact. It has a lift height of 4.85 metres and provides access for wheelchair users, or indeed parents with push chairs, to the store's upstairs coffee shop and reading area.
Turn Key Projects has been responsible for the design and fitting out of all Ottakar's stores. Owner and Director, Chris Stopforth, is particularly impressed with the movemanSKG product. "The installation of the Prestige was very simple and straightforward. My client is extremely pleased with the overall result and the performance of the lift." He comments. "It would not have been possible to install a passenger lift without considerable modification to the building. The Prestige is a perfect low-cost solution to the problem of providing disabled access."
The Prestige is specifically designed for use by the less able and is an ideal solution to compliance with the Disability Discrimination Act. It is fully compliant with Part M of the UK Building Regulations and is CE marked as a declaration of conformity with the EC Machinery and Eletromagnetic compatibility (EMC) directives. This is a guarantee that the product is fit for the purpose for which it is sold and that reasonable precautions are taken to protect the user against injury.
"Should we have a similar requirement for a platform lift in the future," Chris Stopforth continues, "I would have no hesitation in specifying movemanSKG. The product is excellent and the service from design through to installation and commissioning is first class."