The Emergency planning room (Room 10), at St Helens Council in Merseyside has enhanced its ability to host public and internal meetings following the installation of a beyerdynamic audio conferencing and recording system, integrated by Pure AV.
Room 10 accommodates up to 40 delegates and is an important meeting resource for the council, used for both public and internal meetings. The council needed an audio conferencing system to ensure that debates held within the room and the neighbouring Council Chamber could be clearly heard and also recorded.
Joanne Griffiths MBE, democratic services manager at St Helens Council explained: “Following the Localism Act 2011, members of the public can independently record public meetings without permission from the chief executive, so it is important that the council maintain their own recordings in case of dispute. We also wanted a microphone solution that was robust, easy to manage and provided excellent sound quality.”
Pure AV was one of three companies invited to present their solution to the council and following a successful presentation was selected to provide the audio conferencing solution for Room 10.
It was decided following discussion with the council to present the beyerdynamic microphones with Revoluto technology. “We felt that the Revoluto microphone units offered an interesting alternative to the gooseneck microphones previously deployed within the Council meeting room,” said Mike Molyneux, Pure AV account manager for the project.
The Quinta MU31 units offer a wide range of movement with no microphone stem, and maintain sound quality even when the person speaking changes position or moves their head from left to right.
Karen Gillis is the customer relationship manager at St Helens Council and was responsible for the delivery of the upgrade to the audio facilities in the meeting room. She explained: “As soon as we saw the ‘toblerone’ shaped microphone units we could see that the solution presented by Pure AV offered something extra. The quality of the audio was impressive and the rectangular design made the units more robust, removing the concerns we had around the handling of the microphones.”
It was the robust design of the Quinta MU31 units that led the Council to extend deployment of the microphones into the main Council Chamber. Karen Gillis continued: “When the Chamber is not in use the microphones are cleared away and we felt that the rectangular design would make the management of the microphones much easier, with less risk of damage as they are brought out and tidied away.”
The addition of the Council Chamber means that the deployment at the Council now includes 48 Quinta MU31 Revoluto delegate microphones with two Quinta MU33 chairman microphones and two Quinta CU central control units.
Meeting recording is available in both Meeting Room10 and the Council Chamber. Having examined a number of options, the Pure AV team returned to beyerdynamic’s Steno-S4 Conference Recording Software due to its straightforward interface and ease of use. In both rooms the audio is recorded to a dedicated laptop and from there it is transferred to the Council network, which allows the Council to maintain an easily accessible record of public meetings.
Gillis commented: “The installation of the audio conferencing system was completed on the Friday, training on the recording software was provided to the Democratic Services staff on the Monday morning and we were up and running on the same day. The Council Committee meeting held that same afternoon utilised the new system without issue and the Members were delighted with the improvement to the sound quality.”
Griffiths added: “The audio conferencing system installed by Pure AV plays a big part in supporting the work that we do. It enables debates to be heard clearly and satisfies our need to record public meetings. The voice amplification is natural and reliable and whether using Room 10 or the Chamber we can concentrate on the discussion in hand, confident that our voices will be heard.”