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Bristol firm finally unveils its huge Olympic legacy

Tensile fabric specialist Base Structures, based on Feeder Road, built the huge basketball arena as well as structures at the Royal Artillery Barracks

Base Structures Olympic basketball arena

Base Structures’ Olympic basketball arena

A Bristol firm has finally had the chance to reveal itself as the builder of the largest single temporary structure used at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Tensile fabric specialist Base Structures, based on Feeder Road, built the huge basketball arena as well as structures at the Royal Artillery Barracks for the shooting competitions and installations around the Olympic site.

Work for the firm started in 2009 and continued right up to a few hours before the opening of London 2012 with final touches of signage being put into place.

But it is only now that the firm have been able to showcase their work, thanks to the Olympic Development Authority’s ‘No Marketing Rights Protocol’ agreement, which banned any construction suppliers to the Olympics from speaking about their involvement to protect the rights of the Olympic sponsors.

“We were delighted to be a part of the Olympics. It is fair to say we pulled out all the stops to show just how great British manufacturing is and it’s nice to finally be able to talk about it,” said John Dalton, managing director at Base Structures.

“It was an honour to see our hard work and expertise on a world stage and it makes me very proud to be British and of Base for playing our part in the national celebration.”

The Basketball Arena was Base’s biggest project to date. It comprised cladding a ‘skeleton’ 3D frame measuring 30m high and spanning 96m, swathed in 20,000sqm of tensile fabric to create the illusion of a gigantic ice cube. The individual roof panels alone weighed 0.75 tonnes each.

The firm, at St Vincents Trading Estate, was set up in 2001 by a team of industry specialists and now employs a 50-strong team with a £5million-plus turnover.

4 Responses to Bristol firm finally unveils its huge Olympic legacy
  1. Construction
    March 7, 2013 | 2:52 pm

    Indeed although that was in breach of the NMRP and didn't reveal the extent of Base Structures' role – which was the entire membrane cladding installation among several other structures. Great that you were able to write about it though.

    • bristol247
      March 7, 2013 | 3:10 pm

      Many thanks. I have checked with Base Structures and yes, indeed, the BC article in July was in breach of the Olympic 'No Marketing Rights Protocol'. Fortunately it didn't cause the firm any trouble.

      • Martin
        March 7, 2013 | 5:00 pm

        I don't work in marketing.

  2. Martin
    March 7, 2013 | 11:12 am

    A remarkable piece of unveiling. Which was unveiled here last July: http://bristolculture.wordpress.com/2012/07/31/ol

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