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Academy install

In 2009, Trent Valley Academy opened its main four storeys, 15000 square metre building set on a 12 hectare site in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire. The £35m purpose built facility is attended by just over 1000 pupils, staff and guests. When Andy Smith was appointed as Facilities Manager to the Academy in 2009, he felt that there were some clear deficiencies in the site security arrangements, especially around the prevention of anti-social behaviour with the aim of protecting pupils and staff.

The six Pan-Tilt-Zoom (PTZ) analogue cameras offered poor quality images and covered very little of the active parts of the campus. The requirement to manually shift viewpoints also required a skilled and constantly alert operator which did not fit well at school.

Smith approached Proxis, a Leeds-based security firm that had installed CCTV at several schools including Minsthorpe Community College and Bingley Grammar School. After a risk assessment and site survey, it was decided that an initial 12 MOBOTIX cameras would provide base line security covering high traffic areas within the campus. The initial install would also allow senior Academy managers to understand the mega-pixel and in some cases fully hemispheric cameras with the ability to cover an entire room with a single ceiling mounted, 360 degree “fish eye” lens.

The installation proved an unobtrusive method of monitoring a wider area with video and sound. All video is accessible using the MOBOTIX Control Centre software from any authorised PC within the school while footage is held securely indexed on fully redundant NAS servers for an extended time.

The initial pilot project was welcomed and expanded to an extra 14 cameras to cover the inside of the school in corridors, lunchroom, locker and recreation areas. Smith says: “The installation of MOBOTIX was a light bulb moment for many of the senior staff. Many hadn’t realised what can be achieved with a static camera and how few are needed to cover a large area.

“Members of staff dealing with disciplinary matters were highly impressed with the system and once a few incidents had occurred, which were successfully dealt with due to the evidence provided by the MOBOTIX system, word got out amongst the students and discipline improved greatly.”

In total, 99pc of the site is monitored by discreet CCTV which blend into the décor as devices similar to smoke detectors. In the last few years, the Academy has upgraded its external cameras to MOBOTIX giving it visibility over car parks down to the ability to recognise car registration numbers. Smith believes that the school which has few instances of bullying, vandalism or aggressive behaviour is able to act far more effectively to any incident with the backing of CCTV images. 

The MOBOTIX products, which use no moving parts, have meant the Academy has suffered no CCTV failures over the last four years. “The project has been a tremendous success for us,” says Smith, “While Proxis has delivered on time and to budget with their normal level of professionalism and expertise that has allowed us to do more with far fewer cameras then was ever thought possible.”

Proxis have been suppliers of MOBOTIX products since 2005 and are members of the MOBOTIX Partner Program.


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