Former Fraggle Rock studio home to new data centre
Wed 28 Jan 2015
Custodian Data Centre is converting the former home of the Muppet-based 1980s hit show Fraggle Rock into additional state-of-the-art colocation data floors at its Kent site. The design of the Kent studio building is already ‘double-skinned’, with individual studios constituting separate structures within the exterior shell. Custodian DC are building four new data floors within the facility, initially offering up to 300 additional racks.
The site is situated just under 39 miles from London, giving the new data centre a 0.4m/s latency from the major Docklands data centres.
The complex was constructed in the early 1980s at an equivalent cost today of approximately £63,000,000mn, and remains an active production facility with 14,250 square feet of studio space, office space and television post-production facilities. The complex has been home in recent years to productions such as comedy quiz show Was It Something I Said?, children’s wildlife show Brilliant Creatures and Sky1’s Got To Dance.
According to Custodian, the height of the studio space available is permitting the company to construct three secure floors within steel frames, each with individual security configurations. Each data floor will consist of sequences of individual autonomous suites, with access to customisable security controls.
Prior to the Maidstone site extension, Custodian’s footprint already stood at over 6,000 servers, and the new data floors will augment the studio complex’s considerable security with infra-red CCTV, perimeter fencing and ISO 27001 accreditation.
Fraggle Rock was an off-shoot of the hugely popular The Muppet Show (itself derived from the more edutainment-oriented Sesame Street), using Jim Henson’s distinctive puppet design and techniques. The show ran from 1983 to 1987 as a co-production between the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), Home Box Office (HBO), Jim Henson Television and other partners. Contrary to some reports, The Muppet Show (1976-1981) itself was never filmed at Maidstone, since its final season closed before the facilities were completed, but instead was recorded at ATV’s Elstree studios.