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 sara Doors help Otter Brewery keep its cool…

Otter Brewery has installed a sequentially opening loading bay door system supplied by sara LBS to support its naturally cooled ‘eco-cellar’

In an attempt to drastically cut its energy consumption, Otter Brewery has built an ‘eco-cellar’, which uses low carbon insulation and natural cooling to obviate the requirement for electrical cooling systems. To maintain the controlled environment in the cellar, the brewery needed to install a suitable protective door system. sara Loading Bay Specialists has satisfied this requirement by providing a fail safe sequential two-door system that ensures the cellar is never exposed to the outside environment.

Otter Brewery is a family run business that has been established for nearly 20- years. It is one of the most high tech small breweries in the UK, and produces a whole range of award winning beers and ales. The brewery is located in the Blackdown Hills, which is classed as an area of outstanding natural beauty and of specific scientific interest. As a result, Otter Brewery takes its environmental responsibilities extremely seriously and has recently built an ‘eco-cellar’ that is naturally cooled.

In recent years the brewery has enjoyed significant expansion. With the brewery’s previous layout, up to nine separate chillers were needed to chill all of the beer that was produced in various buildings and chambers. This was prohibitively expensive and counter productive to the brewery’s environmental goals. The solution was found in the new ‘eco-cellar,’ which is built partly underground, with a living ‘sedum’ roof and low carbon clay honeycomb block walls that provide state-of-the-art insulation.

The new cellar has been so successful that the correct room temperature is maintained without the use of any electric chillers using the natural temperature of the ground. However, in order to maintain the temperature in the cellar, Otter needed to find a door system that wouldn’t expose the cellar to the outside environment. Inefficient door systems are notoriously damaging to controlled environments, especially when there are no air conditioning systems in place. A door system was needed that could be in frequent use without affecting the insulation of the cellar.

sara Loading Bay Specialists was able to work with Otter, both pre and post sale, in order to design and install a solution tailored to Otter’s needs. sara designed a two door sequential locking system that ensures one of the doors is always closed. Two doors from the company’s Sprint range of high speed loading bay doors were used for the application.
David McCaig, MD of Otter Brewery, commented: “The customer service provided by sara was exemplary. Paul Rudge, the sara Sales Engineer listened to our needs, and came up with a door system that matched all of our demands. The energy savings from the cellar that these doors have helped to achieve has meant that the doors will pay for themselves in a matter of years.”

A Sprint 3000 was selected for the external door of the cellar. The door has galvanised steel frames and a curtain of individual aluminium profiles, which can be easily replaced if damaged. The door is designed for low maintenance, even after long term heavy use, utilising sara’s Disc Drive mechanism which limits noise and wear vibration. The door reaches operating speeds of 2.5 m/s using the MCC Vector control system, which is fully programmable to each application’s needs.

For the internal door sara recommended the Sprint 355, a high speed roller door, with a transparent curtain which provides visibility for safety in high tech areas. Curtain tensioning provides smooth and steady movement with an in-line motor available for applications where side clearance is restricted. MCC Vector control is available as an option, which allows users to programme a dual height opening function.

The Sprint 3000 is available between 1220mm - 7000mm wide and 2500mm – 5000mm high. Between each profile there is a flexible rubber weather seal which provides protection from the elements. The door is wind resistant to EN 12424, class 3; which will protect against hurricane force winds. The Sprint 355 is available between 1000mm – 4000mm wide and 1500mm – 4200mm high. The high visibility transparent PVC curtain comes as standard and is wind resistant against high winds to EN12424, class 2 standard.

Both doors were supplied with sara’s unique ‘non-contact’ safety beam, this continuously scans ahead of the door curtain to act as a fail safe security system. If the beam is broken the door stops, preventing the risk of damaging equipment or, more importantly, of injuring personnel standing beneath the closing door. While similar safety systems exist on the market sara’s is the only one not to need an accompanying spiral cable; these stretch over time and become vulnerable to snagging.

Commenting upon the application, Mike Bunn, MD of sara LBS, said: “Rather than simply providing a product we pride ourselves on delivering a full package to our customers. This includes support through the design and installation stages and beyond. Working with Otter Brewery we were able to use our expertise to help develop a truly energy efficient cooling cellar.”

As well as providing the two door sequential locking system sara has also installed three other loading bay doors at the Otter Brewery.


sara Loading Bay Specialists
sara Loading Bay Specialists Limited is a major force in five key market sectors within the UK: high speed doors, loading bay equipment, industrial doors, aluminium ramps and drawbridge levellers. sara is a total package supplier, combining excellence in product supply with the highest levels of pre and post sales design input and technical support. Its solutions are an important benefit to the end user, specifier, and main contractor.


For editorial enquiries contact: David Bedford, DMA Europa Ltd, 2nd Floor, Snuff Mill Warehouse, Park Lane, Bewdley, Worcs. DY12 2EL. Tel: 01299 – 405454 Fax: 01299 403092 E-mail:

For further information contact: Mike Bunn, sara Loading Bay Specialists Ltd, 4, Garnett Close, Greycaine Estate, Watford, Herts. WD24 7JX. Tel: 01923 208888 Email: Web:


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