Johnstone's gives a lesson in colour

Striking and imaginative colours from leading paint manufacturer Johnstone’s has helped provide an historic college with a distinctly contemporary makeover.

Hurstpierpoint College in West Sussex is an independent, co-educational, day and boarding school for pupils aged 4–18 years old.  Founded in 1849, it has an architectural design that was intended to resemble Oxford and Cambridge universities, with adjoining inner and outer quads and the chapel and dining hall sitting adjacent to one another.

Bryant Decorators Ltd, of Hove, had to remain sympathetic to the original architectural design when tasked with bringing to life classrooms, corridors and staircases in a new block at the college. The new facility was designed to be in keeping with the traditional nature of the existing buildings, yet bring a modern feel to the college.

Using Johnstone’s Acrylic Durable Matt, which has an incredibly robust washable formula making it the ideal choice for removing dirt and stains through simple cleaning regimes, Bryant Decorators took full advantage of the vast colour choice provided by Johnstone’s tinting system to ensure the college received a finish to be proud of.

Nineteen colours, including shades of blue, red, purple and yellow were used to create contemporary feature walls throughout the building, resulting in a spellbinding visual treat for students and teachers alike. A stunning example of where colour was used to dramatic effect was in the building’s presentation room, where striking wooden beams, which are a prominent feature throughout the building, contrast against the bold blue of the feature wall and the light bursting through the windows to provide a unique setting for learning.

The project took nine decorators just short of 10 weeks to complete and director of Bryant Decorators Ltd, David Bryant, says he would have no hesitation in turning to Johnstone’s products and colour solutions again on the jobs in the future.

He said: “We found the Johnstone’s products incredibly easy to work with, which meant there was one less thing to worry about as we had to work around other trades and spend time preparing to reach difficult areas to decorate. The outcome was impressive and something that we are incredibly proud of. We would definitely consider using Johnstone’s for future projects.”

The work was so impressive that Bryant Decorators were nominated for the prestigious Johnstone’s Painter of the Year competition, which recognises painting contractors whose work has excelled over the past 12 months. Tony Walker, Technical Manager – Specification at Johnstone’s added: “Work was completed within budget and also two months before the client’s deadline so Bryant Decorators should be incredibly proud of their achievement.” 

A new CPD from Johnstone’s has recently become available titled ‘Understanding Colour’, which provides architects and specifiers with valuable information on the science of colour, how colour is seen through our eyes and how useful it is in everyday life. Specifiers wishing to take advantage of this new CPD material should e-mail  or call 0800 023 2170.

For more information on Johnstone’s please visit

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