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Cardiff University Starts Academic Year with Social Distancing Signage

Cardiff University's in-house print department printed more than 40,000 signs to prepare the campus for students and staff

Drytac

Cardiff University’s Print Services worked around the clock to prepare its campus for the new academic year, including printing thousands of social distancing graphics.

The university has benefited from an in-house print service for more than 30 years, originally named Graphic Services, and recently renamed Print Services. It fulfills 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 took on 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 onward, we were printing pretty much non-stop 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,” explains 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 3 square kilometers 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.”

On top of the workload, the print team had other hurdles to overcome.

Gareth adds, “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, leafy campus setting in Cathays Park, we had to work out of the middle of a building site.”

“All the wall signage is being used internally and, hopefully, for the short- to medium-term,” he adds.

Alexandria Bruce

Alexandria Bruce is the editor of the GRAPHICS PRO Daily, covering news and guidance in apparel decoration, awards and engraving, and sign and digital printing.

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