Cinematic quality

Acorn Aluminium was appointed to manufacture and supply a diverse range of products in systems from Senior Architectural Systems and Pilkington for the new ARC Cinema, Daventry.

The UK and Ireland box office is expected to top £1bn by the end of the year as movie-goers head back to the big screen as Covid restrictions have been lifted.

The ARC Cinema is part of the renaissance in cinema-going, with digital laser projectors in its four screens, state-of-the-art immersive surround sound systems and luxury electric recliner seats as standard.

Opening in March this year, it’s the centrepiece to West Northamptonshire Council’s £12.5 Mulberry Place Development, Daventry.

Designed by architects Marchini Curran Associates and delivered by the main contractor Willmott Dixon, the two-year project has created an iconic building, which sits at the heart of the local authority’s wider regeneration plans.

The architect’s use of glazing has been instrumental in defining the aesthetics of the building, flooding light into the main foyer, while multicoloured panels create a vibrant and inviting energy around the building.

It also features grey powder-coated curtain walling and inline sliding doors, each element manufactured, supplied and installed by Acorn Aluminium. 

ARC cinema Davenport - aluminium sliding doors
The new ARC cinema in Daventry. Appointed by Willmott Dixon we manufactured and supplied curtain walling and Pure Bifolding Doors from Senior Architectural Systems, plus a ribboned multi-coloured Profilit Screen from Pilkington United Kingdom Limited

Our approach

Appointed by the main contractor Willmott Dixon, we delivered a diverse range of products in systems from Senior Architectural Systems and Pilkington. 

This includes the SF52 Curtain Walling System, SPW501 aluminium commercial doors and PURe Slide doors. 

We also worked with the architects, main contractor and Pilkington, to deliver the buildings defining multi-coloured ribbon screen in Profilit by Pilkington. 

“Profolit is an annealed u-shaped glass system. The best way to describe it is that you fit it into a cast surround, installing each 30mm channel individually. 

“It’s not necessarily something that we do a lot of and it requires a high degree of attention to detail to fit, but the end product is absolutely stunning and it’s seeing a growing application in the commercial environment.

“In this case the multi-coloured ribbon effect that it delivers, defines the entire appearance of the building, making it colourful, vibrant and welcoming.” 

Paul Stevens, Managing Director, Acorn Aluminium.

Product overview: Pilkington Profilit

Pilkington Profilit is a U-Shaped profiled glass with a wired reinforcement running throughout its length. 

A highly durable and flexible curtain walling solution, it can be installed on a vertical or horizontal access bringing diffused natural light into buildings.

Originally developed for industrial applications it can be installed as a single, double or triple wall, to deliver an enhanced level of thermal performance with u-values of as low as 0.61W/m2K. It can also be coated to deliver an enhanced level of solar control. 

It’s easy to maintain and replace and is available in a wide range of different colours, maximising design flexibility. 

Pilkington Profilit:

  • Provides high-light diffusion
  • Can be attained in large curtain walling sizes
  • Allows the construction of curved walls
  • Rapid and easy maintenance and replacement
  • Can be fitted in single or double walls 
  • Available in several colours

Product overview Senior Architectural Systems SF52 Curtain Walling

The SF52 curtain walling system from Senior Systems, is defined by a consistent slim 52mm sightline, delivering levels of thermal efficiency far beyond current building regulations. 

It also offers an exceptional level of flexibility and is suitable for both ground floor and high-rise applications, with full weather testing to CWCT and EN13830. 

It has a life expectancy of 40 years or more and is 100% recyclable at end of life. 

Senior Systems SF52 aluminium curtain walling:

  • Can be assembled in any combination of capped, vertically capped, horizontally capped or silicone glazed to create a unique external facade. A variety of caps allows even more aesthetic possibilities.
  • Choose from Zone drained or Mullion drained (fully capped only).
  • Large range of transom & mullion sizes with additional reinforcing sleeves and boxes from 50-250mm plus the option of concealed steel reinforcing to allow larger spans.
  • Raked heads for a range of apex angles can be achieved using a specially designed shear block.
  • Fully compatible with any of our windows (including frameless vents) plus both manual and automated doors.
  • Available in an almost unlimited choice of colours and finishes both externally and internally.
Acorn Aluminium ARC Cinema
The ARC Cinema installation included the SF52 Curtain Walling System, SPW501 aluminium commercial doors and PURe Slide doors

Product overview Senior Architectural Systems SPW501 aluminium commercial door 

In addition to the SF52, Acorn Aluminium also manufactured also used Senior’s SPW501 commercial aluminium door system in the entrance design to the building, maximising the flow of natural light to create a welcoming and open space. 

The high-performance, thermally broken polyamide aluminium framing system, is ideal for high pedestrian uses and applications, and is available in a standard and narrower 58mm clip and flush mullion, offering additional design options. 

It’s also available in a range of configurations, including standard pivot and anti-finger trap doors.

Product overview Senior Architectural Systems PURe Slide 

The PURe® SLIDE high-performance aluminium door range features Senior Architectural Systems innovative patented expanded polyurethane (PUR) thermal barrier, delivering ultra-low U values 

It’s available in inline slide and lift-and-slide configurations with slimline options with a 50mm interlock sightline for uninterrupted views.

  • Sash weights of up to 300kg
  • Heights of up to 3m
  • U-values as low as 1.1W/m2K 
  • Wide range of colours and finishes


  • End Client: ARC Cinemas 
  • Completed March 2022 and delivered by main contractor 
  • Commercial partners: architects, Marchini Curran Associates. Main contractor, Willmott Dixon. Glass, Pilkington
  • Four-screen landmark cinema

Closing thoughts

“The project was delivered during COVID lockdowns so inevitably there were one or two bumps in the road.

“Working with our partners, we were able to overcome them and support the delivery of a landmark leisure space, which maximises the use of glass, defining the building’s appearance and creating a welcoming environment for those who use it.” 

Paul Stevens, Managing Director, Acorn Aluminium. 

For more information, please contact:

Paul Stevens, Commercial Director, Acorn Aluminium

t. 0115 9282166



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