Leeds Arena


SFS intec’s specialist fastening systems were used to secure the striking shingled, multi-coloured, metal façade on the First Direct Leeds Arena.

Using SFS intec fasteners resulted in significantly reduced fixing times and helped keep the project on its critical timeline.

Products Specified

Comprising of 6,000 square metres of aluminium shingles in five different colours, the cladding was installed in layers onto stainless steel clips and held in place using 35,000 SFS intec aluminium BULB-TITE® rivets.

In addition, 3,000 self-drilling SL3/2 fasteners were supplied to fix the perforated, aluminium mesh rainscreen panels to the structural backing wall. 7,000 low profile, Irius fasteners were also used to fix Kalzip’s system, Kal-Plank, at the rear of the building. The design and construction acheived a BREEAM ‘Very Good’ rating.

Product Solutions

Craig Winstanley, specifications manager at SFS intec was the technical sales advisor for the area at this time. He remembers, “We specified our austenitic stainless steel SL3/2 fasteners to fix Top Hats onto the outside of the structural backing wall. By not having to drill these panels for BULB-TITE® rivet application, the contractor saved considerable installation time. Furthermore, the SL3-/2 fastener also provided the same pull out strength as our BULB-TITE® rivets. This meant it didn't strip out threads with the thin skin of the structural panels.

Material Specified

“Another reason for selecting this fastener was due to its product properties - being made of austenitic stainless steel, the fastener is non-corrosive with aluminium, unlike many other steels – an aspect that was hugely important for guaranteeing a long-lasting, aesthetic finish of the façade.”


Howard Preston, design manager at Lakesmere, the contractor selected for the project, said : “All systems specified for installation at the arena were chosen for their ability to be installed quickly, while guaranteeing a high performance fixing which is hard wearing against corrosion - essential when ensuring a long lasting, visual design. We specified the fasteners from SFS intec specifically for their durable qualities, ability to work harmoniously with the stainless steel clip and also for their low profile, discreet head designs.”

Project Success

The result provides a spectacular display surface for the coloured lighting which transforms the exterior façade at night by reflecting the mood of the concert within.

The 13,000 capacity concert venue features an impressive uninterrupted interior construction, designed to allow all seats perfect sight-lines to the stage. The complex 3,500 ton steel structure was topped out by a 45 metre long proscenium beam spanning the width of the building.

Headed up by Leeds City Council, the £60 million project was completed in 96 weeks and opened in September 2013. The venue has helped increase job prospects and the region's economy.

A succcess story for Leeds, Yorkshire and all involved in designing and building this venue.


SFS Group Fastening Technology Ltd.
153 Kirkstall Road
UK-LS4 2AT Leeds
T +44 113 2085 500