BBC Children in Need 2012 | DIY SOS: The Big Build

Rompa are very proud to have been involved in helping BBC Children in Need as part of a BBC 1 special programme: “DIY SOS: The Big Build”. The programme features the renovation of a centre for children with additional needs in Edinburgh. The Yard helps children and young people from 3 to 25. It is an indoor and outdoor space that welcomes the whole family. This year the centre celebrates 25 years of helping families deal with the demands of daily life, giving the young people a space to develop their confidence and encouraging them to make lasting friendships.

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The Yard receives a grant towards its costs from BBC Children in Need, but the building and its outdoor space were in desperate need of a total overhaul. Rompa donated a state of the art Sensory Room to BBC Children in Need that can aid relaxation or stimulation according to the users needs.


The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 1

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 2

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 3

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 4

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 5

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 6

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 7

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 8

The Yard, Edinburgh, Sensory Room 9

The Yard Revisited

A video about the importance of The Yard to local familys

The Yard Design for BBC Children in Need

This is a list of the products that went into the final sensory room, to view the product page just click on the link on the left.

Bubble Wall An integrated, wifi controlled panel that will cycle through a range of colours or change as the talking cube is thrown.  
Laser Sky Projector Produces a realistic and beautiful starry sky effect on the ceiling. 19908 
Squorner A comfortable and supportive corner seat.  18833
Mirror Ball When a Spotlight is shone onto the Mirror Ball, reflections of light are cast all around the room creating a magical atmosphere.  20546
Milky Way Carpet This high quality carpet has optical fibres woven into the pile, creating a stunning, shimmering effect of continually changing colours.  14726
Talking Cube Ideal for developing the understanding of cause and effect, colour recognition, picture recognition, developing listening and motor skills.  18870
Ball Bubble Tube Bubbles of air propel the multi-coloured balls to the top of the tube. They float gently down again to start their journey once more.  19769
Padded Base Improved design incorporates a velcro fastening cover and removable lid for easy maintenance access.  19062
Mirrors Much safer than glass, these acrylic mirror panels fix to the wall from the level of the top of the padded base using standard mirror fittings.  
Fibre Optic Spray Robust, strands are ultra-resistant to accidental damage, equally bright as standard fibre optics, durable and long-lasting.  17908
Projector Not only light, compact and straight-forward to use, but also very quiet, with low heat output.  18531
Prism Fits on the projector to reproduce the original effect four times.  19934
Panoramic Rotator The Panoramic Rotator projects the central image of the effect and at the same time sends the same image orbiting around the room.  14024
Colour Wall Washer Walls awash with colour! Dramatic and striking lighting from one compact unit!  20259
Colour Match Panel Ideal for sensory stimulation and colour recognition.  19209
Shimmering Curtain A spectacular shimmering curtain of fibre optics which continually change colour.  20322
Light Source With LED technology, this Wi Fi light source is cool-running and maintenance-free.  19210
Effect Wheels Spring, summer, autumn and winter.  19930
Wheel Rotator A wheel rotator is needed to rotate the effect wheel in the ROMPA® projectors.  13170

Here are some reactions from Rompa's key people involved in the project.

Donna Hartley - Managing Director

Donna Hartley

Managing Director



Rompa were fortunate to see what the Yard was like before a horde of skilled tradesmenThe DIY SOS Team descended upon a quiet borough of Edinburgh, as we had already been to discuss refreshing their sensory room.

The Yard is an essential place for the local community, especially families affected by a disorder or disability, but years of use had left the facilities looking a little tired and in need of some DIY SOS magic. Fortunately, Pudsey came to the rescue; along with BBC Children in Need and the DIY SOS team. After many days of hard work from all the kind hearted souls who gave up their time, they transformed this community centre into a fresh, vibrant facility that will help the community for years to come.

We are delighted to be part of this transformation and provided a fantastic multi sensory environment, the main highlight being a fully integrated bubble wall panel that the children could use to peek into the sensory room while not affecting the overall experience of those in the room.  Children In Need focuses on supporting children and young people who are disadvantaged. Projects such as this are vital to people all across the UK and help empower children and extend their life choices. Rompa are proud to support such a worthy cause.

Mark Johns - Project Manager

Mark Johns

Rompa's Project Manager



It was a normal day in the office when the telephone suddenly rang and a voice at theChildren in Need | DIY SOS Big Build 2012 Group Photo end of the line introduced themselves and asked if we would be interested in helping the BBC DIY SOS team on their latest project. Little did we realise at the time it was in fact the biggest project they have every done. We were delighted to be involved in such a wonderful cause. The show has always been a personal favourite and to actually meet the DIY SOS team in person was a great privilege. 

We set off on Sunday evening with a 5 hour drive to Edinburgh ahead of us. We checked in at our hotel, ate and retired to our rooms for any early start. We awoke refreshed and after breakfast we set off to The Yard ready to start installing their sensory room on Day 5 of the DIY SOS Big Build.

After arrival we quickly filled in the necessary paperwork and were then shown to the sensory room by the designer Gabi. The room was just being decorated, the flooring was not down and we now had boxing in the corner where we were going to install our bubble tube mirrored corner. With some help from some joiners on site we were able to overcome this problem. We installed the bubble wall into the hole that was made by joiners on a beautifully clad wooden finished wall. It fit like a glove.

Pudsey Plaque | Children in Need DIY SOS Big Build 2012

On day six of the Big Build we put up the mirror ball and spotlights, wall washer lights, shimmering curtain, talking cube and colour match panel. We were now waiting for the floor to be laid so we could then install the bubble tube. The floor layers did our room as soon as the vinyl arrived. Once the bubble tube was installed the room was complete. Nick and the gang came in to check how we'd done. They were really impressed with the finish of the room. Unfortunately I was unable to see the great reveal, I'm looking forward to seeing the finished project on television on Wednesday.

In times of such economic difficulty it was an experience I will never forget to see how all these different organisations and trades all came together, worked as a team to truly deliver something that will be a lasting resource to the local community and the people it serves. 

This was a great project to be involved in and we really enjoyed the experience. Knowing that the work you're doing is benefitting so many people was a great feeling. I feel so proud to be have been able to help the DIY SOS Big Build for Children in Need.

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