Ollywood transforms busy Birmingham meeting place with Drytac Polar Street FX

Ollywood used Drytac Polar Street FX to create a new floor graphic in Birmingham’s busy Brindleyplace, a project that required durability and safety on wet surfaces.

Brindleyplace, a busy area in central Birmingham, has been transformed with a giant floor graphic created by Ollywood using Drytac’s durable outdoor floor media Polar Street FX.

A popular meeting point in an area of the city packed with offices and corporate spaces, Brindleyplace is undergoing a campaign to encourage people to ‘#RediscoverBrindley’ following COVID-19 restrictions. Avison Young, a global real estate advisor managing the project, commissioned Newport-based Ollywood to print and install the floor display. As well as grabbing attention, the 35m-long floor graphic serves to direct pedestrians to nearby restaurants and attractions including the Ikon Gallery and SEA LIFE aquarium.

In addition to requiring the durability to withstand heavy foot traffic including high heels, the floor graphic had to be securely installed between two water features. Ollywood, who has worked with Avison Young on several other projects across the UK, sought advice from its media supplier Soyang to find a material that could do the job.

Soyang recommended Drytac Polar Street FX for its slip rating and for its durability on surfaces that get wet,” comments Oliver Williams, Managing Director, Ollywood. “Floor graphics are quite common at the moment to promote social distancing but I’ve noticed many that are peeling, they’re not made for long-term outdoor use.

Polar Street FX is priced slightly higher than other floor media but it is better – it does the job it’s meant to. Because it’s aluminium-based it’s more durable than vinyl and Drytac is stricter than other brands about slip ratings. I’d rather use a slightly more expensive product than end up with a bad result.”

Drytac Polar Street FX is a 250µ (10 mil) textured printable white matte aluminium film, coated on one side with a high-tack adhesive for safety and security in public environments. It has been designed to be non-slip and scuff-resistant without the need for lamination, making it perfect for fast-turnaround outdoor floor graphics jobs.

The installation in Birmingham took place on an autumn day in October – just eight weeks after the initial site visit and concept discussions – but the Ollywood team overcame the difficult conditions.

“The application of floor graphics is always tricky on cold, wet days,” says Oliver, “but the Polar Street FX went down perfectly, even alongside the water features. We take care over our preparation but it’s worth taking the time.”

Oliver’s management skills and attention to detail stems from a previous role as a chef in the RAF. After leaving the military he worked with Waitrose on a festival food truck project, where he became interested in the design and build side of event production. Finding that few businesses bring together all of these services under one roof, he established Ollywood to meet this market demand 18 months ago.

“We’re looking forward to more projects like the Brindleyplace floor graphic,” says Oliver. “Polar Street FX is a great product we can use for jobs like this as it really showcases what’s possible. We’re also keen to try different Drytac products as new projects come up.”


We offer the correct ratings and insurance backed warranties to make your life easier. With hundreds of certifications on our print media and laminates we’d be happy to help you plan your next project.

Download the Drytac Floor Graphic Guides to help you select the proper floor material and navigate various environments.

Read more

Cardiff University starts new academic year with Drytac social distancing signage

Cardiff University's in-house print department has printed more than 40,000 signs to prepare the campus for students and staff – the majority on Drytac SpotOn wall media.

Cardiff University’s in-house print department printed more than 40,000 signs to prepare the campus for students and staff – the majority on Drytac SpotOn wall media.

Cardiff University’s Print Services worked around the clock to prepare the campus for the new academic year, including printing thousands of social distancing graphics on Drytac professional self-adhesive media.

The university has benefited from an in-house print service for over 30 years, originally called Graphic Services and recently renamed Print Services. It fulfils all manner of printing needs, from business cards, flyers, booklets, stickers and posters – both academic and advertising – to pop-up banners, mounted poster boards, wall displays and floor graphics. It also provides laminating and thesis-binding services.

During the summer of 2020, Print Services was presented with a new challenge: to help prepare the entire Cardiff University campus for the new academic year in line with COVID-19 guidance on social distancing.

“From July onwards we were printing pretty much non-stop in order to help the Estates division get the 200-plus buildings on campus ready for re-occupation and re-opening in time for the autumn semester,” says Gareth Middleton, Senior Print Services Assistant, Bute Print Unit, Cardiff University.

“By our rough estimations, in that time we printed somewhere in the region of 2.5 to 3sq km of signage – more than 40,000 items. The majority of these were A4 wall signs which were printed on Drytac SpotOn and then guillotined or cut by hand from the roll.”

As well as the unprecedented amount of work that needed to be completed by the end of September, the print team had other hurdles to overcome.

Gareth explains: “Due to the campus being locked down and restrictions on building occupancy, only two of us were granted access to our unit in the Bute Building where the wide-format machines live. Added to this, that building was undergoing a massive refit and renovation project so rather than our usual peaceful (especially in the summer!) leafy campus setting in Cathays Park we had to work out of the middle of a building site!”

Cardiff University Print Services chose Drytac SpotOn White Matte, a 100μ (4 mil) vinyl film designed for short-term applications such as wall displays. Also available in White Gloss, Clear Gloss and Clear Matte finishes, SpotOn features Drytac’s innovative ‘dot pattern’ adhesive that enables easy bubble-free application without tools, and clean and simple removal.

“All the wall signage is being used internally and – hopefully! – for the short to medium term,” says Gareth. “Drytac SpotOn gives a great solid, vibrant finish using our Roland TrueVIS VG-540 and is quick and easy for the Estates team to handle and apply in large quantities.”

Gareth adds that the print team also uses the Clear Matte version of Drytac SpotOn.

“It’s great for all the same reasons as the SpotOn White, plus the added advantage of being able to mount it on the inside of windows or on glass screens without blocking out all the light.”

With social distancing expected to continue for the foreseeable future, Drytac has ensured its factories in the UK and North America have been working to meet unprecedented demand for graphics media for wall displays, floor graphics and other applications.


To meet these new social distancing requirements, it is important to use the right graphic media for each job. Understanding the location of the graphic and the surface it will be adhered to is key.  Download our Social Distancing Graphics Guide now!


We offer the correct ratings and insurance backed warranties to make your life easier. With hundreds of certifications on our print media and laminates we’d be happy to help you plan your next project.

Download the Drytac Floor Graphic Guides to help you select the proper floor material and navigate various environments.

Read more

Protecting surfaces with antibacterial and antimicrobial technology

Drytac Antimicrobial Film

Drytac explains how new products imbued with antimicrobial technology can help protect surfaces from bacteria, fungi and mould in between cleaning.

Authored by Shaun Holdom, Global Product Manager, Drytac.

Keeping surfaces clean has never been more important. Doors, keypads, counters, tables – anywhere that people touch ­– must be cleaned regularly. Now there are some new products available that provide additional protection from within.

Microorganism-Fighting Technology

These products are imbued with microorganism-fighting technology during the manufacturing process, so it becomes part of the material’s physical structure and will not wash off or wear away. When bacteria contaminate the surface of the film – from human contact, environmental conditions or simply lack of cleaning – this technology helps inhibit bacterial growth. While not a replacement for regular cleaning, the treatment boosts the cleanliness of the surface in between cleanings.

Antibacterial vs Antimicrobial

There are two types of product to choose from: antibacterial and antimicrobial. Antibacterial films will protect only against bacteria, while antimicrobial films are effective against bacteria, plus fungi including mould, algae and mildew. The different effects depend on the chemistry – typically copper, silver or zinc.

Copper, Silver or Zinc Additives

The ions in copper prevent cell respiration and damage the bacterial cell membrane or viral coat to destroy it. Positively charged silver ions target and kill bacteria, fungi and certain viruses through several different means. Zinc-based additives, are broad spectrum antimicrobials, making them effective against many microorganisms including bacteria and fungi. The broader spectrum performance of antimicrobial substances makes them suitable for use in all environments.

Silver based technology can migrate out of the film and may become ineffective over 3-5 years.  Zinc based technology is designed to lock into the film and to protect the surface typically up to 15 years.

15 Years of Protection with Drytac Protac AMP Surface Protection Film

PRINTING United 2020 Product of the Year winner, Drytac Protac AMP Film is a 150μ (6 mil) textured polyester film incorporating Microban® technology, that provides antimicrobial surface protection. When microbes meet the Microban reservoirs in the film, the cell wall of the microbes is disrupted – resulting in 24/7 protection for up to 15 years, even if the film is cut. Protac AMP uses an organic zinc technology, providing the wide spectrum of protection most beneficial to sensitive environments. Every batch of Protac AMP is tested for antimicrobial performance providing the utmost confidence and peace of mind for any application. It also achieves up to 15 years’ adhesive durability indoors and 5 years’ outdoors and has so far been used on drinks machines, tray tables on aircraft, and in schools and healthcare facilities.

Read more

Drytac wins three PRINTING United Product of the Year awards

Drytac has won three 2020 PRINTING United Product of the Year awards, recognizing the innovative Drytac Protac AMP, Polar Street FX and SpotOn SynTac solutions.

Drytac has won three awards in the PRINTING United Product of the Year competition, bringing its total wins in this awards program to ten in the past three years.

PRINTING United Product of the Year recognizes the most outstanding print solutions available in 2020 produced by members of the PRINTING United Alliance, the USA’s largest member-based association in the printing and graphic arts sectors.

Each of Drytac’s winning products reflect the brand’s dedication to developing new, innovative solutions that meet customer demand. In the Laminates, Adhesives, Films, Coatings category, Drytac Protac AMP came top. This film incorporates Microban® antimicrobial protection to provide reliable protection from bacterial contamination and mold growth 24/7 for up to 15 years. This breakthrough in antimicrobial technology is already being used in healthcare facilities, schools and aircrafts.

Drytac Polar Street FX, winner of the Media – Adhesive Back (Not Vinyl) category, was released this year in response to the unprecedented demand for directional and informative floor graphics. A PVC-free aluminium printable media, Polar Street FX has been designed for exceptional quality graphics in high-traffic outdoor areas, such as busy shopping streets. It has several slip-rating certifications to ensure safety, without the need for lamination.

Drytac’s third PRINTING United Product of the Year award went to Drytac SpotOn SynTac media for walls and floors, in the Media – Non-PVC category. This product has been engineered to meet market demand for eco-friendlier non-PVC graphics solutions that are easy to use. SpotOn SynTac is a one-part, peel-and-stick media for wall graphics that can be also partnered with Drytac Interlam EcoTex laminate for easy, bubble-free application of vibrant slip-rated floor graphics.

Drytac Product of the Year

“We’re excited to announce three more awards from PRINTING United Product of the Year,” says Hayden Kelley, CEO, Drytac. “Our R&D team have excelled themselves this year in creating incredible new products in response to market trends and these awards are a tribute to that amazing work.”

A new virtual PRINTING United Product of the Year awards gallery is now available to explore online, with digital badges for winning products including Drytac Protac AMP, Polar Street FX and SpotOn SynTac.

Read more

Drytac helps ensure floor graphics are safe and legal in public spaces

Drytac guarantees flawless, certified floor graphics backed up with warranties and support – essential for every public space. New guides for the retail, construction and housing, stadiums, and schools and universities sectors explain more. 

Drytac, a specialist manufacturer of floor graphics media, has released several overview guides on this key applications. The four dedicated guides cover the essential aspects of floor graphic projects – such as safety obligations and insurance – in retail, construction and housing, stadiums, and schools and universities respectively.

The use of floor graphics has accelerated at an unprecedented rate in 2020, owing to the need for social distancing and directional signage that can be easily observed. Drytac is a major brand in this field, manufacturing floor graphics media – along with an extensive range of other sign and graphics products – around the clock at its factories in the UK and North America. As such, it has taken the lead on safety: the chief concern of any organisation using floor graphics for public use. 

The new guides provide a general overview of floor media, including locations and surfaces, types of graphic solutions and relevant Drytac products – and explains the legal responsibilities. A FAQ section explains slip ratings and certifications and the tests to achieve them, with advice on how to maintain graphics to avoid slips and trips. It also covers the legal responsibilities of the supplier, installer and customer. 

These legal responsibilities are based on testing and retesting of all Drytac products. Every batch undergoes in-house QC testing to ensure it achieves the British Standard BS 7976-2/European Standard EN 13036-4/North American Standard ASTM-E303 for slip resistance. Research has confirmed that this test and its result, called a Pendulum Test Value (PTV/BPN), is the most reliable and accurate method for evaluating slip resistance. The UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE) along with its global counterparts and many insurance companies have adopted this as the standard test method for assessing slip resistance. 

“At Drytac, safety is our priority,” comments Shaun Holdom, Global Product Manager, Drytac. “Slip ratings are not based on a one-off test sample done in a lab years ago, but on the results of the strictest assessment available, on every single batch.  

“We offer the correct ratings and insurance-backed warranties to make life easier for our customers, providing peace of mind that every Drytac floor decal offers legal and financial protection. In short, Drytac products keep you safe.” 

Drytac’s comprehensive range of specialist floor graphics media includes Polar Grip with Interlam Pro Emerytex for smooth outdoor floors, Polar Street FX for rough outdoor surfaces, SpotOn Floor 200FloorTac Textures and Polar Floor PET 170 for indoor public spaces and many other innovative solutions. Details on these products and more can be found in the overview guides, available to download for free via www.drytac.com/floorgraphicguide

Drytac can also supply a list of Drytac-certified print and install partners. Customers are recommended to get in touch for information or download the guides. 

Read more
7