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October 12, 2023


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case study

Access control installed at famous film location

Access control by Paxton was installed at Royal Connaught Park, a former Edwardian school converted into a gated residential development of luxury apartments.

Previously, the location has been used for films such as Monty Python’s Life Of Brian, The Avengers and Harry Potter. In the famous fantasy movie series, it was Royal Connaught Park’s dining hall that was transformed into the Hogwarts Great Hall, where students gathered for sorting ceremonies and Halloween dinners.

The now residential development in Hertfordshire is using Paxton10 access control and video management system to offer remote management of their underground car park, installed by Harlow-based Gamma Systems.

The Royal Connaught Park features private swimming pool, health & fitness suite, outdoor tennis court and on-site parking with over 100 residents.

Underground complexities

According to Paxton, the development covers 100 acres of parkland, with the facility team wanting an access control system that offers a remote-management feature, to save time in going to each residential block. Also taken into consideration was the apartments’ high-quality branding and premium décor, for matching aesthetic and durable options to meet the requirements.

Andrew Barrs, Servicing and Maintenance Coordinator at Gamma Systems, said: “Originally we looked at a GSM system, but because of the location is in an underground car park, the phone signal was really poor, and it just didn’t work properly.”

A Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) system sends signal and communicates with mobile phone towers to grants access to users over a phone. As opposed to Paxton10 where the door controller is networked, communicating over IP and avoiding the use of phone signal.

Royal Connaught Park’s dining hall that was transformed into Hogwarts Great Hall for Harry Potter.

Andrew continued: “A couple of days before that installation, I was on a Paxton10 training course. When we found out the GSM system didn’t work well in an underground area, I thought of the Paxton training and Paxton10. Its web-based nature and features, like remote management, would be very helpful on this site, so I recommended to my customer.

“The Paxton10 installation process is all self-explanatory. Our team just did it without realising we’ve done it because it is so easy to do.”

Smart credentials 

According to the firm, Paxton10 is currently securing five car park entrances at the Royal Connaught Park, with over 100 users on the system. If the site manager needs to add extra users, they are said to be able to programme the key fobs on site.

Andrew also introduced the licence-free Bluetooth smart credentials with Paxton10, should a resident prefer to use their smartphone or smartwatch to access to the car park.

Further reading: A guide to mobile access control systems 

For enhanced customer experience, Gamma Systems provides system maintenance and technical support, such as for programming key fobs or issuing smartphone access.

Paul Mcevoy, Site Manager at Royal Connaught Park, said: “The Paxton10 system is fantastic. It is really easy to programme, and the system works great.”

Gamma Systems has also installed a few Paxton10 cameras on site, maximising Paxton10’s functionality of combining access control and video management on one single platform. This allows a more comprehensive and intuitive access control experience for Royal Connaught Park. There is also a potential plan to expand Paxton10 to the other 14 blocks in the estate, which will allow the system administrator to manage all the car parks in the development on one system.

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