Chester Zoo has grown rapidly since its foundation in 1930 so that today it is spread across more than 125 acres, and is home to more than 15,000 animals and 500 different species. It attracts more than 1.9 million visitors each year - making it the most popular UK visitor attraction outside London. With further growth planned, Chester Zoo began a site-wide vulnerability assessment, led by the zoo’s then head of security, Nigel Peers, out of which flowed a series of recommendations for modernisation of the zoo’s security. Zoo security requirements The Zoo needed a fully-integrated and networked camera system to enable the security team to spot and act on all threats faster; tighten perimeter security; improve visitor and staff health & safety monitoring; and support keepers in assuring the welfare of the animals in their charge. The new system needed to be centralised to support the fully-professionalised security patrolling team. However, video also needed to be distributed effectively to enable health & safety officers, keepers and researchers, to view specific sets of camera images when necessary. All this was only possible working in close partnership with IP video specialist systems integrator NW Systems Group. Improving image quality and coverage NW Systems, once on site, initially discovered that many of the legacy CCTV cameras were generating poor images. NW Systems replaced approximately 60 faulty CCTV cameras with new Axis network cameras. Meanwhile, all remaining CCTV cameras were networked using AXIS M7016 and M7014 Encoders, alongside all new network camera transmissions. A total of 160 new Axis cameras were installed and networked by NW Systems across the original or ‘core’ zoo, The Islands and elsewhere, together providing much more comprehensive coverage site-wide. AXIS P3225-LVE cameras were installed in numbers across The Islands, partly because of their versatility and robustness making it possible to site them both inside and outside animal enclosures. Special attention was paid to siting of cameras for total discretion. Where surroundings required, camera housings were camouflaged, thereby offering highly unobtrusive surveillance. In addition, the newly centralised control room was fitted with the very latest video management software (VMS) from Milestone Systems. The new IP video system also supports post-event follow-up - including supplying timely, high quality video footage to the Police when necessary Tightened security at main entrance and car park NW Systems also provided increased coverage across the recently renovated Jubilee Quarter, the Zoo’s main entrance and large car park serving it. It also installed several Axis Q6000-E PTZ Dome Network Cameras, alongside Axis C3003-E Outdoor Network Horn Speakers, clamped onto existing lighting masts throughout the car park. This enables the Zoo’s security team to monitor activity around the 1000-vehicle capacity car park, for the protection of visitors and their belongings. The loud speakers can be used to transmit live messages to arriving visitors to guide them towards the entrance and to deter any potential wrong-doing. Animal welfare and keeper safety needs NW Systems was also called in to help solve a specific concern of the Zoo’s Lead Elephant Keeper, associated with opening large gates to let the elephants out of the Elephant House into the wide-open habitat and back into the elephant house at night. The existing remote door control system was now supported by high quality live views provided by five-megapixel AXIS P1357-E network cameras covering the doors. These same cameras were also being used to capture the magical moments of elephants giving birth to their babies – three baby elephants have been captured on these cameras over the last 18 months. The video sequences were shown live via the Zoo’s website and recordings have been also been kept for marketing purposes. Rationalise, network and centralise security operation Over a three-year period, working in close partnership with the UK’s largest visitor attraction outside London and largest zoo in the UK, NW Systems has helped Chester Zoo to rationalise, network and centralise its security operation, underpinning the professionalisation of the Zoo’s security team. NW Systems has also provided the right platform for distribution of high quality video images to meet zoo keepers’ specific operational and research needs. The new system also now supports keepers’ animal welfare and behaviour research requirements - helping them to spot and discourage inappropriate visitor interaction with animals. It provides vital evidence in case of any incidents which might result in insurance claims. The new system also now supports keepers’ animal welfare and behaviour research requirements Potential threat identification From a security perspective, helping the Zoo’s security team to identify potential threats more rapidly – using video images to brief patrolling officers on where to go and what to anticipate on arrival. The system enables the security team to assess and prevent escalation of any threat by moving rapidly and effectively to the scene and then, once there, acting in a way that is proportionate with a pre-identified threat. The new IP video system also supports post-event follow-up - including supplying timely, high quality video footage to the Police when necessary. The result is a state-of-the-art IP camera system which transmits video from nearly 300 Axis cameras to a modern, IP-based centralised control room. It also offers the potential to deliver live and recorded video to patrolling officers’ mobile devices on the ground when the time is right. Vanderbilt networked intruder alarms have also been installed by NW Systems to further protect key buildings around the site. "Chester Zoo now has a video security platformwhich is highly reliable, expandable and future-proof" Beyond standard security surveillance Nigel Peers, Security Manager, Chester Zoo, summarised: “Chester Zoo now has a video security platform which is highly reliable, expandable and future-proof. We know that whatever our requirement in terms of intelligence, video analytics and integration with other physical security systems such as intruder alarms or access control systems; it’s possible to bring it all together with our new IP video system displayed in the Zoo’s new security control room. Speed and appropriateness of response to threats is now assured.” Frank Crouwel, Managing Director of NW Systems, added: “I’m very proud that we’ve been able to work with Chester Zoo every step of their three-year journey to upgrade and harden their physical security provision; while also creating a camera system which supports many other operational requirements from visitor and staff health and safety, to animal welfare and behaviour research, as well as retail management and loss prevention.” Gareth Simpson, Head of Site Operations at the Zoo said: “I’m very pleased that we selected NW Systems to help transform our security provision, working alongside our Security Manager Nigel Peers and the rest of my team. They’ve been highly responsive and sensitive to our unique, multi-dimensional needs which go way beyond standard security surveillance: using cameras for everything from visitor and staff safety, animal welfare monitoring and behaviour research studies, right through to meeting and exceeding tightening Crowded Places terrorist-threat mitigation requirements and supporting the Police with any enquiries. NW Systems is a great long-term partner for us.”
Morphean VideoProtector offers cyber security and cross-platform compatibility NW Systems, an IP video specialist, has signed a partnership with Swiss-based Video Surveillance as a Service (VSaaS) provider Morphean which will see NW Systems offering Morphean’s VideoProtector platform to professional security and IT resellers, as well as UK-based end-users direct from this month. Morphean VideoProtector platform Morphean VideoProtector is a highly robust, resilient, and scalable cloud-based video surveillance service, underpinned by Axis Communications. AXIS One-Click Camera Connection feature, together with Axis’ wide range of high quality cameras, ensures that the very best and most suitable cameras available in the market can be connected to the internet with a minimum of fuss. Axis also provides Morphean VideoProtector users with access to the AXIS Camera Application Platform (ACAP) offering numerous downloadable features and analytics capabilities including people counting, perimeter protection, motion detection, heat mapping, Point of Sale, loitering, advanced intrusion detection, queue management, window break detection, aggression detection, car, and smoke alarm detection, and much more. Cyber security Because Morphean’s service is delivered and maintained in the cloud, it offers consistently high levels of cyber security protection, as well as cross-platform compatibility to support users viewing cameras on Android, Apple iOS as well as on MAC and PC desktops. Because Morphean’s service is delivered and maintained in the cloud, it offers high levels of cyber security protection, as well as cross-platform compatibility Martyn Ryder, Sales Director Northern Europe, Morphean said, “We are very pleased to have NW Systems on board as a Super VSP here in the UK. NW Systems is well known to be one of Axis’ leading partners in UK, offering integrated solutions that include enterprise CCTV, access control and intelligent video analytics.” Easy to use and reliable “Their specialist IP video ecommerce site gives them access to a large and highly-engaged security/ IT integrator and end-user community. While they are buying surveillance cameras there, why not simultaneously plug into the world’s most reliable Video Surveillance as a Service offering?” Frank Crouwel, Managing Director, NW Systems said, “The time is right for Video Surveillance as a Service. So many business and leisure-time applications we use today are delivered via the cloud: Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce, Sage Live, Spotify, data back-up services like Amazon Web Services’ S3, to name but a few. So, people trust cloud services to deliver quality of service and value for money. For small chains of restaurants, jewellers, car dealerships, and numerous other high-value goods retailers with limited IT and security support capability on the ground, VideoProtector offers an easy-to-use, highly reliable video surveillance capability complete with analytics-based alert notifications to smart devices and desktops of authorised users.”
Traffic volumes in rush-hours fell nearly 25 per cent below normal levels once the real-time cameras were installed Hosted video service provider NW Systems has designed and developed an 18-camera system for Durham County Council to help them monitor and manage city centre traffic congestion affecting the city’s main arteries during major road works, bridge repairs and traffic signalisation projects. Real-time views The Council’s Traffic Signals and Urban Traffic Management and Control (UTMC) team commissioned NW Systems to develop an HD quality camera system to provide real-time views over potential congestion hot spots associated with major repairs on Millburngate Bridge. This bridge crosses the River Wear close to the city’s historic centre and handles approximately 48,000 vehicles each day. During the period of the bridge repairs, traffic was restricted to one lane each way, potentially causing major congestion if not managed carefully. A combination of early warnings to motorists in case of traffic congestion and a highly proactive public information campaign proved to be the answer to keep the traffic moving. Traffic volume decreases by 25% Malcolm Sinclair, Team Leader, Traffic Control & UTMC, Durham County Council, explained: “For the live camera system to be effective, road users needed to be able to quickly load and view live views via our website - using this information to plan their journeys to avoid the worst of the traffic.” The new traffic cameras proved their worth very quickly: traffic volumes in rush-hours fell nearly 25 per cent below normal levels for that time of year and the Council’s traffic camera web pages became the most popular pages on its site, drawing an average of 30,873 page views per week throughout the seven week period of bridge repairs. It has not stopped there. Following the Council’s decision to continue using the live cameras to provide views of road works associated with new traffic signalisation projects at Gilesgate and Leazes Bowl roundabouts, Durham’s traffic cams remain the number one search topic for visitors to the council’s website. Effective crowd management Malcolm Sinclair, Team Leader, Traffic Signals & UTMC, Durham County Council, summed up: “Live traffic cameras here in Durham have proved vital in helping us manage traffic flows when the city’s road system is under stress. They stimulate motorists travelling at peak times to seek alternative modes of transport, change their routes or set off earlier to avoid delays. They’ve also helped reduce the workload on our help desks which otherwise have to gear up to handle much higher volumes of enquiries and complaints during major road works.” Frank Crouwel, Managing Director, NW Systems said: “Our experience in running managed and hosted video services, for a number of construction and property development companies over recent years, gave us the wherewithal and technology know-how to offer Durham County Council a shrink-wrapped, mobile Live Traffic Monitoring service which is highly cost effective. It gives them the flexibility to move cameras to new areas of potential congestion, while only paying running costs when the traffic cameras are needed.” Save
The new system combines Axis cameras and door controllers with Imron access control software and Milestone VMS Wirral-based IP video specialist NW Systems has installed one of the UK’s first fully integrated IP video and access control systems to help fast-growing transport-on-demand service provider Cabfind, secure its new headquarters in Birkenhead in Wirral. NW Systems recently installed a pure IP-based, fully integrated access control and video surveillance system to cover both the inside and outside of Cabfind’s new headquarters in Birkenhead, Wirral. Integrating surveillance and access control The new system combines Axis IP cameras and door controllers with Imron access control software and Milestone front-end video management software (VMS), to ensure entries via all key doors are covered and video recordings collected for viewing on authorised desktops and smart devices. NW Systems met Cabfind’s demand for HD quality surveillance through deployment of some of the latest Axis network cameras designed for high performance in even low light conditions, thereby delivering high quality images around the clock. NW Systems went further to install AXIS A1001 Open Platform Network Door Controller at key entrances together with AXIS 4001-E smart card readers, located on the building’s door frames. The Axis door control hardware units were linked to Imron’s IS2000 open architected access control software platform, holding records of Cabfind’s identity card holders which are checked at point of access, around the clock. Our IP video expertise hasnow extended into deliveringone of the UK’s first fullyintegrated access control andIP video management systems NW Systems was able to configure the system in such a way that the Imron access control platform was fully integrated with Milestone Systems’ Access Control Module, itself an extension to Milestone XProtect Express video management software (VMS) which manages the display of live and recorded video alongside door entry and exit events. This integration enables Milestone XProtect Smart Client users to view IS2000-generated access control and alarm transactions alongside time-synchronised video recordings, on authorised Cabfind desktop PCs and smart mobile devices. Superior security and operational efficiencies The new system not only offers superior security but also delivers operational efficiencies by automating many of the tasks that previously would have consumed the time of Cabfind’s IT, HR and security teams. Michael Luddington, CFO, Cabfind.com, said: “As well as delivering a highly streamlined access control and surveillance system in our headquarters today, NW Systems has developed a fully networked system which is capable of being expanded as we strive for further efficiencies. For example, we may extend the use of the door control system, enabling it to double as a time & attendance system to help us better manage our people going forward.” Frank Crouwel, Managing Director at NW Systems, summarised: “I’m very proud that our IP video expertise has now extended into delivering one of the UK’s first fully integrated access control and IP video management systems – all on a budget that shows us that many more companies could benefit from integrating previously separate access control and CCTV systems.”
NW Systems’ cloud-based video service called RemoteManager includes provision of high resolution time lapse video Hoylake-based security solutions provider, NW Systems has installed a carbon-neutral IP video solution to help leading property investment and development firm Eshton Group, showcase the construction of the largest building it has ever commissioned. Mobotix IP cameras The 543,620 square foot Exertis Distribution Centre sits within the new 70-acre, Burnley Bridge Business Park at Junction 9 of the M65 on the west side of Burnley. The new site already provides a total of 680,000 square foot of commercial office, industrial and commercial warehousing space. NW Systems selected a Mobotix M24M 3-megapixel high resolution IP camera, fitted with a specialist 90 degree lens. The IP video specialist positioned this camera at the top of a six-metre rigid pole designed for CCTV installations. The Mobotix camera was chosen for this installation because of its ability to operate with less power than many comparable high specification network cameras. This factor made it possible to power the camera via two compact solar panels supported by a three-phase generator wind turbine system. This solution is already proving much more cost effective than the diesel generator or hard-wired alternatives which Eshton was keen to avoid. The IP camera was connected to the internet via a secure high speed 3G cellular broadband connection. The camera also has local storage capacity on an in-built 64GB MicroSD card providing redundancy for rare occasions where internet connectivity is lost. Keeping track on the progress of the project NW Systems’ cloud-based video service called RemoteManager also includes provision of high resolution time lapse video recordings based on professionally-edited video recordings stored over the course of each phase of construction. The first time lapse video, covering the first three-months of construction of the new Exertis Distribution Centre, has just been completed. Live images are being displayed on Eshton Group’s website throughout the building’s construction. Jonathan Chapman, Director, Eshton Group said: “We are using NW Systems’s service to view progress of the build from our headquarters in Leeds or via the mobile if travelling between meetings. It is great for showing stakeholders the progress of the project. In addition, time lapse video recordings will give us a powerful new dimension to our marketing activity. “It is great to be capturing the building of such a landmark project as Exertis Distribution Centre from start to finish. NW Systems provided the right construction monitoring and marketing solution for Eshton at the right price. I hope to use them again on other Eshton-led construction projects in the future.” Frank Crouwel, Managing Director, NW Systems, summarised: “We’ve proved here that a highly cost effective solar-powered remote monitoring solution can be deployed to help construction firms and developers monitor their projects regardless of the remoteness of the locations and lack of utilities on site during the construction process. We see lots of opportunities to offer this service to others in the construction world now it has been proven to work well in showcasing the largest commercial building project commissioned in the north-west so far this year.”
The five IP cameras deployed by NW Systems at Glencairn provide 24-hour coverage Hoylake-based security solutions provider, NW Systems has installed a highly effective IP video system for Renaissance at Glencairn, a luxury residential care home for the elderly based in the Grange suburb of Edinburgh. In-depth coverage Such has been the success of surveillance system that images from one of the cameras has also provided vital images of a van moving at speed past the property. These images, positively identifying vehicle and driver, provided vital police evidence which helped them convict the driver for a crime which took place in the area. The camera covering the front of the office was also able to capture images of a refuse lorry backing into one of Glencairn’s imposing stone gate posts causing several hundred pounds worth of damage. However, because the images could be copied and sent across to the company concerned by the care home manager, they agreed to pay for all repair works. The five IP cameras deployed by NW Systems at Glencairn provide 24-hour coverage of the patio area to the side of the house; a large courtyard garden to the rear; the public footpath on the rear boundary if the property; the front of the house and front car park and finally a secondary car park to the side of the house. NW Systems fitted four JVC VN-C215V4U fixed dome IP cameras. These cameras offer excellent day/night capability, switching between colour by day and black and white after dark and, delivering crisp images even in low-light conditions 24-hours a day. Other highlights The IP66-rated, vandal-resistant aluminium dome housings protect all these cameras from attempts to damage them and from harsh weather, making them ideal for outdoor surveillance. These cameras were complemented by a Pelco IP110DN offering 1.3 Megapixel 100 degree day/night view to the rear of the care home. Cameras are supported with specialist infrared (IR) Raytec Raymax 25 lighting units. These offer 120 degree wide angle IR to cover the darker areas to the rear of the property at night. This was necessary because bright white security lighting would have been unpopular with neighbours and residents alike. All cameras were linked to an HP server, pre-installed with Milestone XProtect Essential software for video recording and management. The whole system was installed and made live within two working days towards the end of the building works to convert the property to a care home. NW Systems provides ongoing remote support in case of technical problems. Julie McNaughton, Care Home Manager, Renaissance at Glencairn, said: “On a day-to-day basis we use the camera system to view all cameras from our administration office behind reception. It offers us another pair of eyes to monitor the garden and patio seating area when our residents are out enjoying the fresh air. It is always good to keep an extra eye out just in case they need help.” Frank Crouwel, Managing Director, NW Systems, summarised: “It is pleasing to see that such a cost effective IP video system has helped to underpin the strong safeguarding and security record of this luxury care home and that the solution is still delivering great value nearly seven years on. We look forward to fitting similar surveillance systems in other Renaissance care homes in the future.”
The new office will provide a base chiefly for sales and engineering operations Following a very successful period of growth, leading IP video specialist integrator and services provider, NW Systems, has opened a new London office just as the New Year is starting. Robert Kidd will be office manager of the new office as well as sales manager for the South of England. NW Systems plans to recruit four more people to staff this new office during 2015. The office will provide a base chiefly for sales and engineering operations, whilst back office and administrative support will continue to be provided from the company's headquarters in Wirral near Liverpool. Its new base in North London comes at a good time for further business expansion in the South-East following the hiring of Robert Kidd nine months ago. Frank Crouwel, managing director of NW Systems Group, explains the reason for this expansion: "London and the South-East is experiencing robust growth for us right now and the creation of a physical office there makes absolute sense to boost our support capability on the ground in this busy and lucrative region.” The additional office follows 10 years of solid, year on year growth in line with overall IP video market growth since the IP video specialist opened its doors in October 2004. Today, through its security-focused integration division; supply-only surveillance equipment online store Network Webcams; live webcam hosting service Streamdays; and remote monitoring offering RemoteManager, NW Systems now has over 7,000 customers in the UK, Europe, Middle East and North Africa. NW Systems’ target markets for video systems installation include Construction, Education, Manufacturing / Industrial as well as Transport and Logistics. Focus on certain sectors has been a key to NW Systems’ success. Frank Crouwel, managing director and co-founder of NW Systems, adds: “With IP video you need not be restricted to surveillance-only briefs. By being prepared to talk to more stakeholders across the business you can deliver video systems which meet the needs of health & safety managers, quality controllers, line managers, logistics managers and others besides. It is also very important to be able to speak the same language as both the IT and network manager and be cognisant of their concerns around Quality of Service and bandwidth management for example.” The new offices at Blu-ray House, 58-62 Alexandra Road, Enfield, London EN3 7EH in is shared with a number of high-tech companies, and has good access to the M25 and into central London.
The images from AXIS and MOBOTIX cameras are being archived and streamed using NW Systems’ Streamdays 2 and RemoteManager NW Systems Group’s Streamdays 2 and RemoteManager video streaming and video monitoring & recording services have been selected by one of the UK’s most respected property development groups, Argent LLP, to provide live and recorded images as one of London’s largest redevelopment projects ramps up. NW Systems has so far installed three high resolution fixed network cameras and two Pan Tilt Zoom (PTZ) cameras on the top of two buildings within 67 acre redevelopment zone around London King’s Cross station. A total of five network cameras have so far been commissioned to provide overhead views of the site and six further cameras are planned. They will witness the redevelopment and construction of more than 50 buildings over the next 10 years. The King’s Cross project is one of the largest and most ambitious construction projects in the Capital right now. Once completed, it will provide 10 new public squares, 20 new streets and 2,000 new homes. Over 45,000 people will study, work and live in the area. It is already home to the new University of the Arts, London (also called Central St Martin’s) which has a capacity for over 5,000 art students. Google’s UK headquarters will also be built to the west of the site. NW Systems has installed two AXIS P5534-E PTZ cameras, the first cited on top of King’s Place at 90 York Way and the second on the roof of the newly developed Arthouse building. The latter camera forms the first of a total of four cameras which will provide images of the new Google UK headquarters during its construction which has just started. Two fixed AXIS P1346-E have also been installed on the roof of King’s Place and one further fixed MOBOTIX M24 cameras on the top of the Arthouse building. High resolution images from all three static cameras are being archived to NW Systems’ RemoteManager servers and will be used to create time-lapse videos of specific aspects of the construction. Images from selected cameras are simultaneously being streamed using NW Systems’ Steamdays 2 live streaming service. The project site is supported by a busy social media communications space on the same site. This website is designed to stimulate engagement and meet the public’s interest in this gigantic development. Steve Alderson, marketing director, Argent LLP, commented: “We live in an age where real-time video is increasingly influential. The public can control our (web) cameras which provide a bird’s eye view of the development at King's Cross. Streaming video is one of the digital tools successfully used to change the public's perception, inform the pace of change and highlight the fantastic events programme being played out. We are proud of our social media following. The cameras and their public operation provide a great way of fuelling interest for the most important development site in central London.” “We are very proud that both our live streaming service Streamdays 2 and RemoteManager have been used in such a seamless way to provide high quality live and recorded images to suit increasing interest in development of this high profile site" Isaac Anim, project manager, inside Argent’s marketing department added: “We had more than 20,000 hits to the live video. Social media mentions in support of the redevelopment escalated sharply as more people heard about the construction, and we were able to engage with our community actively in this way.” Frank Crouwel, managing director, NW Systems Group, said: “We are very proud that both our live streaming service Streamdays 2 and RemoteManager have been used in such a seamless way to provide high quality live and recorded images to suit increasing interest in development of this high profile site. RemoteManager is now able to provide a robust repository of recorded images as visitors and the media continue to follow and update the story.” RemoteManager is a unique, yet tailor able high resolution video monitoring service offering system design, installation, and wireless or wired connectivity and full hosting of live video and captured images 24/7/365 for the entire length of any construction, refurbishment or demolition project. Streamdays is a live streaming webcam hosting service designed to support organisations with public engagement projects. The service is widely used to promote tourist, leisure and hospitality locations right around the UK.
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