Inflated fabric building for Olympic Water polo

Written by in Sport

Most sport is best played outdoors but with the unpredictable British weather games can often get cancelled or relocated inside. While the weather cant be changed, the addition of a tensile fabric canopy can provide shelter for the participants and spectators allowing the game to continue.

Whether its the addition of a simple shelter, a temporary clubhouse or a more complex, permanent structure, tensile fabric can be used to create the most dynamic and innovative buildings. If youre unsure of the benefits of using tensile fabric in general, check out our earlier blog Why tensile? but more specifically for sport use some of the benefits include;

Permanent or temporaryTensile fabric lends itself for temporary structures because it is lightweight, easy to handle and easy to install and demount. Some structures are designed to be demounted and erected annually, others seasonally for us, it doesnt matter and is up to the client how often they erect the structure. However, the materials we use have durability and can last between 20 and 30 years meanings temporary is not the only option; plenty of tensile fabric structures are designed for permanent use in all weather conditions. Room for growth

Unlike many solid materials, tensile membranes have good levels of light transmission and ETFE foils even allow UV rays to be transmitted through which encourages grass to grow naturally whilst keeping us sheltered and dry! For spaces where clear materials would cause excess glare and/or solar gain a milky, white ETFE foil can be used to limit light transmission whilst allowing those vital UV rays to permeate the membrane and boost natural growth.

Creativity is no issueUnlike traditional building materials, tensile fabric membranes can incorporate undulating curves and dramatic shapes without compromising the integrity of the structure. Fabric can also be printed with slogans or logos, can be opaque, translucent or transparent and are available in a wide variety of textures and colours. 

Our structures can allow the architects creativity to run wild, safe in the knowledge that we will do everything possible to realise this.

Weather proof

A tensile fabric canopy can provide shelter from wind, rain and snow allowing players underneath to continue to enjoy their game whatever the weather. Structures can vary from a simple canopy, to something including short or elongated side panels.


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Author: Architen Landrell

For over 30 years, Architen has been at the forefront of the tensile fabric industry.

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+44 (0) 1291 638 200

Architen Landrell, Station Road, Chepstow, NP16 5PF, UK


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