Riverside Lockers

All About Our Service Department

The Helmsman family includes over 40 employees, all committed to personal service, and our After Sales Service department is no different.

When we sell, manufacture, or install a Helmsman product, we do so with the intention of making the products life cycle as long as possible. Not only is this by using the best quality and most suitable materials for the job, but also by providing a fantastic after sales service for the lifetime of your product. Our service department can help with a range of requests, from Ad Hoc repairs to regular maintenance contracts.

Here when you need us.

Our service team consists of a highly skilled set of engineers, customer coordinators and maintenance workers to keep your lockers and cubicle products working to their highest performance, for as long as possible. This isn’t limited to a service contract. We are here if you need us after sales, manufacture and/or install.

Additionally, our service team can help with not only our own Helmsman products, but with other manufacturers products too. From minor repairs to replacement doors, or even complete refurbishments. For example, take a look at our lock replacement case study at Riverside Leisure Centre.

What do we offer?

As Helmsman is the whole package, with a design, manufacturing, installation and after sales service team, we can provide a range of after sales options and support.

Should you need replacement doors, we can manufacture and supply Solid Grade Laminate (SGL) doors, metal doors, and even doors to fit most other manufacturers products. We can colour match to your existing scheme, or supply doors of all shapes and sizes, from full length one compartment lockers to Z lockers, all the way through to 20 compartment doors for garment dispensers.

Lost your key?

Whilst we have the ability to help with the big repair jobs, the majority of the time all you’ll need us for is broken or missing keys, accidental or deliberate damage, or misuse. We can supply replacement parts for all components from keys to locker numbers, locks, discs, and fobs for both lockers and cubicles. We stock a variety of replacement parts for immediate delivery, however even if we don’t have your particular request in stock, our service team can locate, order and ship to you in no time at all.

For more info on our Accessories and replacement parts, click here, call our service department on 01284 72633 or email the team at service@helmsman.co.uk

Riverside Lockers
Refurbishing lockers and cubicles
Ojmar OTS Basic Lock

7 Top Tips for designing your leisure centre changing rooms

Customer Focused Design

Whilst your vision for your changing rooms might be modern, slick and imaginative, its important to also think about the Customer Experience when creating your design. How many lockers and cubicles will fit in the area you have allocated for your changing rooms? Is this enough for the number of users you expect to have? Too many lockers or cubicles and you’ll have no room to get into them, too little and you’ll have some frustrated customers on your hands.

Cater For Everyone

According to research done by GT3 Architects “85% of caregivers surveyed find it incredibly difficult to deal with the challenges of a leisure centre – such as where to put a child while you get changed or how to get into the pool safely if your child cannot stand by themselves – particularly when alone.” Leisure centres currently only cater for 16% of the population, so make sure your design your changing rooms to cater for as many people as possible.

Customer Journey

An important aspect of the design of your changing rooms is the customer journey. Think about everything the user will see when they arrive, how can you make their lives easier in the changing rooms. For instance, you don’t want to have wet areas as an access point to dry areas in the changing rooms, make sure the flow of your design fits within your customer’s journey.

Materials for your Lockers and Cubicles

A variety of materials could be used within your changing room design, but its important to think about their versatility as well as their look. For example, metal lockers probably wouldn’t be the ideal choice for a changing room due to the materials potential to change under humidity.

Laminate lockers and cubicles are ideally suited for schools, commercial projects as well as leisure centres and can be used for both wet and dry areas with a variety of locking systems.

Another great choice for your changing rooms would be Glass Lockers. Providing a clean-cut contemporary look, either laminate doors are over-clad with tempered glass or RAL coloured glass is used for the doors. Using a mix of laminate and glass doors can create a striking contrast, or you could complement your lockers with Glass Cubicles. The non-porous nature of the materials means the surface doesn’t absorb or allow the ingress or particles, creating a fresh, sanitary solution for your changing rooms project

The great thing is both laminate and glass lockers can be manufactured in a variety of colours too.


Modern solutions for changing rooms now include a range of technology. The most frequently used within a changing room is heated lockers.

Whether it be coming out of the pool and wanting warm clothes to change into, or somewhere to dry damp clothes, heated lockers are a great addition to a leisure centre, spa or swimming pool changing room. Available with metal or laminate doors, a perforated base allows the circulation of warm air inside the locker, with perforated slots at the top allowing the damp air to flow out, keeping the inside of the locker nice and toasty.

Lighting and Circulation

As changing rooms tend to be areas of high humidity, its important to consider the ventilation and circulation of air throughout the changing rooms to stop the spread of bacteria and bad smells! If you keep the room well circulated, this will minimize the humidity and smell.

Keep the lighting open and welcoming, you don’t want lights too bright that blind your customers as they’re getting ready, but you also want them to be able to see what they’re getting out of their locker.

Think logically, having no light at a mirror is not helpful. Also noting that side lighting creates fewer shadows can help make your changing rooms an ambient yet practical space.

Other Amenities to consider

You’ll also want to consider the other amenities you will be providing in your changing room.

  • How many bins are appropriate for the space and usage?
  • Do you need a designated family changing room?
  • Where will you be positioning bench seating?
  • Do you want to provide vanity areas with mirrors and hairdryers?

You might not need all of the extras in your changing room, if its not something you think your users are going to need, then don’t worry about including them!



Source: PBJS Magazine

St sidwells leisure centre
Leisure Centre tips
St Sidwells Leisure Centre
Downpatrick Leisure Centre
St Sidwells Leisure Centre Vanity
Berwick Leisure Centre

Sustainable Solutions for your Leisure Centre Changing Rooms

Downpatrick Leisure Centre
St Sidwells
Suffolk Golf Club
Vanity units

Minimize water and electricity use

There are several ways you can minimize water and electricity use throughout your changing rooms. With solutions such as automatic taps and LED lighting, you can help improve your sustainability throughout the project.

Use more “Green” products throughout the changing rooms

You could provide hand sanitisers at the vanity units, reducing the use of water and paper towels. Or green shower products, minimizing the chemicals going down the drains. Not only will these options improve your sustainability, but they could also be a selling point for a consumer. Using sustainable products throughout can help customers and potential customers form an idea of your brand. If they’re putting down a significant amount of money for your leisure centre, they may well want your brand’s values to align with their own.

Eco friendly / recycled materials

It used to be that choosing the “Green” option for materials in projects like changing rooms would cost a significant amount more than the “non-green” options. As sustainability becomes more and more important, and in the forefront of people’s minds, the cost difference has been getting smaller and is no longer a huge reach. Materials that come from renewable sources are also important for sustainability. Looking out for suppliers who are certified by organisations such as The Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) will ensure the materials used in your project are 100% recyclable and have a long-lasting shelf life.

Carbon-neutral materials are also a great option for your changing room project. BioCarbon Laminates are a great example that provide a carbon neutral material for your lockers, cubicles, vanity units are more. BioCarbon Laminates calculate the carbon emissions and take the responsibility to manage carbon by controlling, monitoring and balancing carbon emitted development practices, reducing them to zero.

The process is important too

Whilst the importance of sustainable materials is key, you should choose suppliers that use sustainable manufacturing methods too. An example is Helmsman’s new Automatic Powder Coating system. Installed in 2021, the Gema Automatic Powder Coating System is a faster, more efficient and more sustainable technology for metallic powders.

Choose products that will stand the test of time!

The best way to be sustainable in your changing rooms project would be to choose products that will last and will not need to be replaced over and over. Finding a supplier who use Solid Grade Laminate, Glass, Timber and Metal, as well as industry leading manufacturing methods will improve the lifetime of your changing room project.

BREEAM accreditation

BREEAM stands for the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method. It is the worlds longest approved method of assessing, rating and certifying the sustainability of a building. BREEAM has a credit system, which is ranked by different sustainability requirements. If the requirements are fulfilled by architects, builders, and developers, then they will be awarded the credits depending on how they respond to the criteria.

Helmsman uses sustainable, long-lasting, recyclable and environmentally friendly materials to manufacture lockers and cubicles. We are always trying to improve and help the environment locally and globally. Read more in our blog here.

With Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles, you can be sure that our products will stand the test of time. With sustainable manufacturing processes and materials, your leisure centre changing rooms project will be in great hands.

Police Charging Lockers

Technology in Lockers

Gone are the days where you arrive at work, school or university soaking wet from your cycle journey, or a with a flat mobile phone battery. With technology across the globe soaring above everyone’s expectations, lockers are no different. Helmsman’s smart storage solutions can offer a range of technology within our lockers, making everyone’s lives easier.

Charging Lockers:

The ability to securely store phones, laptops, or even power tools whilst charging them at the same time is a great benefit. Helmsman charging lockers are suitable for schools, universities, as well as retail and industrial environments, and we’re seeing demand increase for this particular product in recent years.

Helmsman charging lockers are available in a variety of door configurations, i.e., 5, 10, 12, 15, 20, 28, 30 and 40, and available with or without the charging capability, with additional ventilation to reduce the risk of heat build-up.

Want to know more? Take a look at our charging lockers here.

 Heated Lockers:

With sustainability in the forefront of a lot of people’s minds, cycling to work has become the norm for many of us, and with many companies offering a cycle to work scheme, this trend is set to rise. Helmsman Heated lockers are ideal for commuters and staff who require their damp clothes to dry before the end of the working day. Helmsman Heated lockers are also ideal for leisure centres, swimming pool, or spa changing rooms, giving your members an additional benefit of drying their damp belongings too.

Heated lockers are available in standard locker sizes and options, as well as Z shaped lockers. Or we can help design any bespoke projects too.

Interested in our Heated Lockers? Find out more here.

Digital Locks

Another place to find technology in our lockers is the locks. With a range of digital locks available, your lockers could have access with a pin code, card, bracelet or key. Our selection of lock options can provide your project with a safe, secure and modern look.

Take a look at our lock options here.

Manufacturing bespoke lockers:

Our design, manufacturing and installation team can offer the full package when it comes to your project, and “bespoke lockers” aren’t as daunting or expensive as they sound. We have the ability to customise our products to meet your requirements and space, providing solutions for awkward corners, uneven floors or even curved walls.

We also offer a variety of colours, materials and technologies, so your bespoke project can be designed with your project’s specific needs in mind.

Need to know more about our bespoke service? Click here or contact us today for a quote.


Plus – don’t forget, all Helmsman’s Products are Made in Britain. So you can be sure you’re buying from a trusted company that values transparency, sustainability and ethical business practices.

Police Charging Lockers
Heated Lockers Perforation
Heated Lockers
Primary School Lockers

What are the best lockers for Primary Schools?

School Lockers

Helmsman has over 70 years of experience in the school locker industry, and over these years have perfected the design and size of our lockers for each intended purpose. With research and development, we know that the standard sizes for Primary School lockers should be as follows. Our Key stage 1 lockers are 1250mm high and Key stage 2 lockers are 1600mm high in order to be the best fit for each age group. We have two ranges of primary school lockers, our laminate lockers and essential metal lockers. Both options are available from one to three compartments due to the height options.

Laminate Lockers

Our laminate style lockers are aesthetically pleasing, durable and easy to maintain. These are a more expensive option compared to metal lockers. Due to this, laminate lockers are probably more suitable for a smaller size primary school or a SEND primary school to withstand tougher measures. Laminate lockers provide a great range of colours and styles, perfect to match the modern interior. Anti-bacterial laminate is also available to provide better protection against germs which has been in the forefront of many peoples minds in recent times.

Essential Metal Lockers

Essential metal lockers are a classic choice for most schools. These lockers are reliable, easy to upkeep and a perfect storage solution. The mild steel metal body and doors can be powder-coated in any Helmsman RAL colour. However, most primary schools like to go for standard ‘ice’ bodies and the primary colour of blue, yellow or red doors as this is considered educational. Separating each year group with a different colour can also help pupils to differentiate between lockers and specific areas.

Locker storage in primary schools doesn’t tend to have any security issues, so swivel locks are a good option. They are convenient and work as a handle for easy opening and closing of the locker. Swivel locks are part of our standard range and come at no extra cost with both the laminate and metal lockers. Additional extras such as sloping tops and cladded stands should be considered to keep the lockers clean and clear from clutter.

If you would like more information on our Primary School lockers, please contact us today.

Workplace lockers

Are employers required to provide workplace lockers?

A question many people may ask when starting a new job is “does my employer have to provide lockers?” The short answer would be no. However, there are many situations where lockers are imperative for people to complete their jobs successfully.

For example, should staff members be required to get changed on site, lockers are a necessary requirement for an employer. According to the HSE, “If the work activity requires your employees to change into and wear specialist clothing (overalls, a uniform, thermal clothing etc) then you must provide enough changing rooms for the people expected to use them.” This includes the necessity to “contain, or lead directly to, clothing storage and washing facilities.”

In order to prevent employees’ own clothes becoming contaminated, or mixed with their work clothes, it is advisable to provide separate storage for clean and contaminated clothing. These should “allow wet clothing to be hung up to dry during the course of the day” and be “well ventilated

What type of lockers could an employer provide?

A great option for lockers in the workplace are staff lockers. With bespoke solutions available, these can be manufactured from a range of materials and can be designed to suit each application and use. If you are required to wear safety clothing or use safety equipment, or perhaps PPE for the role, then a locker may also be required.

Metal lockers can be fitted with a steel sheet divider to keep personal clothing separate from soiled workwear, and shelves can be included for PPE, bags and personal belongings.

Should you need to provide clean garments for staff, whilst providing a drop off point for soiled clothing, Garment Dispenser and Collector lockers are a perfect option too. Garment Dispensers and Collectors are lockers designed to allow employees to collect clean garments while soiled clothing is collected centrally through another locker into a serviced laundry bag.

If you have introduced a “cycle to work” scheme, or you are required to provide an area for workers clothes to dry, heated lockers could be a great addition to the workplace. These lockers can come with metal or laminate doors depending on your aesthetic needs. A perforated base allows the warm air to circulate inside the locker and perforated slots at the top allow the damp air to flow out.

Should you require lockers for your workplace, contact us today or request a quote here.

Workplace lockers
Workplace lockers
Glass lockers for fitness clubs

Why Glass Lockers are great for Fitness Clubs?

Glass lockers

Helmsman Glass Lockers are great for health and fitness clubs as they are aesthetically pleasing and upgrade any space, new or old. These lockers are strong, sanitary and practical. Over the years, we have seen a major increase in demand for glass lockers, especially in new build leisure projects.

Any new build or refurbishment project, small or large, should consider glass lockers as a changing room storage solution. These lockers will make the space look first-class. Glass is the most luxurious material that we use for our locker doors. The process used is thermic tempering to toughen the glass, to make it ‘safe’. We have a range of Helmsman RAL glass colour options.

Because of the tampering process, it is less likely to break and typically fractures into small, dull pieces if it does happen to break. Therefore, it is a relatively safe material that many people can handle without worrying about getting hurt, even if breakage occurs.

Once glass lockers are installed they will not require a lot of maintenance. They are highly sanitary as they do not absorb particles or let them pass through, so the glass doors do not collect germs and bacteria. Especially in these difficult times, this should give customers peace of mind to ensure they are safe from the spread of coronavirus. This is why the new St Sidwell’s point leisure centre requested glass lockers, they provide style, cleanliness and safety.

As well as glass lockers, we manufacture glass cubicles that can match the lockers and create an even more luxurious and sanitary space. Check out our product ranges and contact us for more information today.

Laminate Lockers

6 signs your lockers need an upgrade

6 signs your lockers need an upgrade

With new design, technology and manufacturing processes, there are many reasons why your locker room might need updating.

Are they dated, dark, or needing some TLC?

Gone are the days when lockers were bland, grey, metallic boxes lined up in the school halls. With the development of technology and style, you can now find lockers in a variety of materials, colours and finishes, with an array of accessories.

Dark bland colours such as grey are known to promote negative feelings, such as sadness and anger. Upgrading your dark lockers to brighter colours could promote more positive feelings throughout. Whether your lockers are in a school, leisure centre or office environment. Perhaps choose blue, with associations to stability, harmony and trust, white to showcase cleanliness and humility, or a wood effect finish to create an earthy and peaceful feel.


Not enough Lockers (or Cubicles)

Perhaps when you started out you only had 3 people working in the office and now you’ve got 30. Or your leisure centre had a competitor down the road who’s closed down so your customer base has skyrocketed. Whatever the reason, you no longer have enough lockers or cubicles available.

With a variety of shapes, sizes and configurations, you may well be able to fit more lockers and cubicles in the same space. It just takes a bit of creative thinking.


Your company is becoming more sustainable

You’ve introduced a cycle to work scheme in the office – brilliant! But no one wants to cycle to work in the rain and sit in an office in wet clothes all day. Invest in some heated lockers and you’ll probably find more people take up on the scheme. With a variety of options available, including timers, thermostats, as well as a variety of colours, locks and finishes, your team can have their clothes dry before they leave at the end of the day.


You want new lockers that are easier to clean

Particularly in recent times, the idea of cleanliness, washing our hands and keeping germs at bay has been in the forefront of people’s minds. With a variety of materials available, modern lockers are easier to keep clean, and some even have protection against germs.

Essential Metal Lockers are simple to maintain, with a practical design and slim structure and are easily wiped down to reduce the risk. Laminate Lockers are also ideal, with anti-bacterial laminate available for better protection against germs.


Your lockers are no longer secure

Over time, older lockers can deteriorate, with the metal rusting or locks being broken. Newer locker designs, whether they be metal, laminate, glass or an alternative are designed to stand the test of time. Plus, with a variety of new technologies, whether you want a basic key, a coin return lock, a key strap, a combination lock or a digital lock, lockers have never been so secure. Now could be the best time to upgrade yours.


You just feel like a change!

Whether you’ve had your lockers for 5 months or 5 years, sometimes we just fancy a change, and that’s ok! With brand new technology, sustainable practices and materials being developed all the time, you may want to upgrade sooner than planned!

Have you been thinking about updating yours? Contact Helmsman today to find out how we can help!

6 reasons to choose Helmsman Lockers

6 Reasons to choose Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles

6 Reasons to choose Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles

Helmsman Lockers & Cubicles is a family run business

With a strong commitment and an extensive history in the industry, Helmsman Lockers and Cubicles has all the benefits of a family-run business, whilst still being one of the UK’s top manufacturers and installers. The company has been built on strong family values and good relationships, with a team of long-serving employees, suppliers we have worked with for years and repeat customers returning with new projects. We believe in the power of teamwork, harnessing and playing to each member’s strengths resulting in a business whose value and effectiveness is greater than the sum of its parts.


We’re the whole package

Not only do Helmsman supply a huge range of products, including lockers, cubicles, bench seating, IPS and vanity units, we also are the UK’s only turnkey manufacturer. With our fantastic team, we can support you from design, manufacture and installation all the way through to our after-sales support. We really do offer the complete package for your project.


Bespoke Lockers and Cubicles projects

Because we are the only company in the UK to offer the full package, Helmsman offers not only off-the-shelf products but can also create bespoke solutions for your project. Whether this be aluminum, steel, glass or solid grade laminate. We offer a range of colours and styles, as well as options and accessories such as heated lockers, charging lockers, and different locking systems, plus we can provide solutions for awkward corners, uneven floors or even curved walls.


Helmsman lockers come with a warranty – but they’ve been known to last over 50 years!

Our products come with a warranty, and a lifetime of support and after-sales service, (more on that later!) However, we were once contacted by a lovely lady from Shropshire about some replacement keys for her lockers. As standard practice we requested some photos of the item to identify the lock and received a selection of photos of lockers from 50 years ago, even with the old Helmsman logo still intact. With a product lasting that long, this is another great reason to choose Helmsman for your project.

Helmsman original logo


After Sales Service

From minor repairs to complete refurbishment, Helmsman can provide you with the necessary service, maintenance and after-service facilities. We offer a complete range of after-sales care and service, ranging from a regular maintenance contract to ad hoc repairs. We also stock a comprehensive range of replacement parts available for immediate delivery, maximizing the life of our products.


Experience and knowledge of lockers and cubicles with a history spanning 230 years

The Helmsman brand and company originates from Bristol Docks around 1790 when it was a manufacturer of wooden parts for ships. By 1875 it was located in the West India Dock in London making galvanized iron tanks and cisterns for bulk liquid storage. The factory later relocated to Walthamstow, and then suffered a direct hit from a V2 rocket in 1944, killing the chairman and several employees. In the 1960s the company was manufacturing bulk tanker lorry bodies for transporting items such as grain or flour.

During the early 1970s the company moved to its current home in Bury St Edmunds, manufacturing lockers for the school, industry and leisure markets. Over 40 years later, Helmsman are the UK’s leading manufacturers and installers of a complete range of lockers and cubicles, with the original wooden sailor figure standing in our entrance.

Helmsman history

Need any more convincing? Contact us today or fill in our quote form here.

School and staff lockers covid secure

How to ensure your school and staff lockers are covid secure?

School and staff lockers covid secure

We all thought 2021 would be the year where things will be ‘normal’ again, however, as we are going into 2022, this is not the case. Coronavirus is still a major scare, and we all want to stay protected. Many schools, offices and workplaces have changed the way they run and take extra precautions to protect students and staff across the board.

One simple way to promote good hygiene in the school and office environments is by reducing the number of items that enter the small rooms, meeting rooms and classrooms from outside environments. Even after we move on from the pandemic, responsible hygiene practices will remain a key focus for schools, offices and the wider community.

Student lockers

Many parents are concerned about the number of things their children will have to carry around the school, especially if they have expensive smartphones, tablets or laptops. Therefore, more and more parents want their children to have a locker.

If students are staggered and there is a timetable when students can use their lockers during different periods of the day, school lockers are not only a great storage solution, but they eliminate the risk of students carrying too many items during the day. Going from one classroom to another carrying all their belongings, then they are at higher risk of picking up germs, from surfaces and transporting it around wherever they go around the school and taking it back home too.

The virus can survive and live on various surfaces for up to 72 hours. Our Essential Metal Lockers are extremely simple to maintain and keep clean with their practical design and slim structure. They don’t take up too much space, so they can fit into a narrow hallway without feeling too cramped or causing too much overcrowding. They can be easily wiped down with a damp cloth each day to get rid of any lingering germs too. Each locker can be safely locked with a key or its locker padlock, for extra security.

Our laminate lockers are also ideal for schools, as anti-bacterial laminate can be supplied for better protection against germs. These lockers are durable and reliable as well as aesthetically pleasing.

Staff lockers

Teachers and other members of staff are now returning to work, and they need to feel safe and secure in their workplace. Many teachers require a lot of supplies during their teaching day, which may be hard to keep out of the reach of young children. This again is another risk for the transmission of the virus and germs spreading around the classroom unnecessarily. Providing staff lockers gives employees a space to store high valued belongings such as laptops that they may not want to travel with back and forth every day.

Leaving such items securely in their lockers, sealed with their locker padlock or an individual key gives them peace of mind. It also means that they are carrying less on their commute home, and this is crucial in these present times, especially if their main form of transportation is on public buses or trains. The less they are carrying, the less chance of their belongings being touched by strangers and any germs being spread around further.

For more information about what we can offer you and how we can ensure your lockers are covid secure email us at enquiries@helmsman.co.uk or give us a call on 01284 727626.