Acton Gardens 6.2 Case Study

Client:   Countryside Properties

Contractor:   Countryside Properties

Architect:   A&Q Partnership

Location:   Acton, West London

Balconies:   87

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Acton Gardens 6.2, situated in the heart of Acton, is an award-winning urban village in West London designed by A&Q Partnership and constructed by Countryside Properties. Sapphire was invited to create the bespoke balconies for this project. Our team of experts designed, manufactured and supported the install of 87 modular bespoke balconies at Acton Gardens, a Countryside project.

Challenges at Acton Gardens 6.2

The main challenge in the design was improving privacy for residents and reducing the wind felt on the balconies on the higher floors while maintaining compliance and an aesthetic design. Due to the combustible cladding ban laminate glass wasn’t an option for the balustrades.


The Acton Gardens project required us to create some unique balconies in order to bring the design vision to life. Our designers worked closely with the architects at A&Q Partnership and devised bespoke balconies with vertical bar balustrades with a mesh panel on the bottom on both inside and out. This mesh along with matching privacy screens bring additional privacy for the balconies giving residents greater peace of mind. We then added a unique design finish for these bespoke balconies using a bespoke bronze/gold metallic powder coating. The finish of the balconies with the warm tones of the façade gives the building a golden glow.

Once the balconies were manufactured and tested against the high specifications and quality standards, our logistics team ensured the smooth delivery of the products, fully assembled for installation, to the site. This was crucial to ensure that the balconies reached the site on time for a quick installation without creating the need for on-site storage. Upon arrival, the balconies were lifted out of the lorries and easily installed directly on to the building, reducing both time and effort on site.

The Glide-On™ cassettes manufactured for Acton Gardens 6.2 had various benefits for the contactors, Countryside Properties. They helped reduce time on site, as the balconies were delivered fully assembled, cutting down on installation time. The cassettes were produced in a factory environment, ensuring a high level of quality control during the manufacturing and assembling process. The offsite manufacturing of the balconies also helped to reduce costs while increasing the quality of the balconies. Additionally, this method of balcony installation also reduced the duration of scaffolding on-site, resulting in a direct cost saving to the contractor. The easy installation process of the cassettes eliminated the need for workers on-site, reducing the risks involved while working at height. The fully assembled cassettes were delivered to the site just before the installation, minimising the need for on-site storage.

The use of MMC at Acton Gardens 6.2 in West London helped bring the designers’ vision to life without compromising on the quality or efficiency of the balconies installed.

Installation Process

Step 1: Cast in anchors were cast into the slab & incorporated thermal break connections offering superior rigidity to the balconies.

Step 2: Cassette® balconies were preassembled offsite, including the balustrades, decking & soffits.

Step 3: Cassette® balconies were transported with balconies ‘nested’ onto each pallet making transport both cost effective & safe. Balconies were pre-slung offsite ready for installation upon arrival.

Step 4: Once lifted into position, the Cassettes® simply Glide-On™ to the pre-erected support arms, before completing the simple mechanical fixings.

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