through the years with Oscar Acoustics

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Oscar Engineering was founded in 1978 by current non-executive chairman, John Hancock.

At this time John already had 9 years professional engineering experience working with companies such as Schweppes and The Crown Cork Company. John came across a new business opportunity at Cantrell & Cochrane (soft drink bottlers later taken over by Coca Cola) where there was a new requirement for all machinery to meet the ‘1974 Health and Safety at work Act’. He convinced them to give him the opportunity to design, manufacture and install safety guards for the labelling machines throughout their factory.

diversifying into noise control

This was a major turning point for John as he launched this business idea and company registered as Oscar Engineering Ltd. He found a small manufacturing facility on a farm, employed a skilled labour team to assist manufacture, bought a small bungalow in Kent and got married to his wife Kim. A year later followed the birth of their first son Ben Hancock, now Managing Director of Oscar Acoustics.

Over the following years things became very busy for Oscar Engineering, increasing their client list with well-known companies such as Watneys, Mars, Nestle, Coca Cola, The Kellogg Company and many more. As factories became more and more under pressure from the HSE to reduce noise levels for employees, John decided to diverse into acoustics and noise control offering improved designs for seals, sound absorption, full enclosures and attenuated ventilation.

introducing architectural acoustic finishes to Great Britain

By the late 1980s Oscars’ had doubled its manufacturing capacity and diversified even further into more acoustic products and services and in 1992 Oscar Acoustics became the new trading name of Oscar Engineering Ltd.

In 1998 John Hancock visited Amsterdam at the invitation of the MD of Asona BV to view installations of SonaSpray acoustic decorative finishes and was so impressed that he then visited International Cellulose Corporation (ICC) the manufacturers of the SonaSpray range in Houston, Texas and agreed a licence for Great Britain.


The SonaSpray range entered the UK market via Oscar Acoustics over 25 years ago at a time when the alternatives were tiled ceilings and basic acoustic panels. Gradually, Oscar’s portfolio expanded from village halls and churches to large schools, international film studios and attractions including the London Millennium Dome.

The ranges versatility began to gain attention across Great Britain as products that could be applied onto almost any substrate configuration and to meet any acoustic requirement. With its seamless and decorative acoustic finish, SonaSpray follows the lines of whatever is beneath it, giving architects and designers the freedom to design without the constraints of traditional acoustic methods. No longer would architects have to compromise on design in order to achieve acoustic perfection.

With the world becoming more environmentally aware, the recycled paper based SonaSpray range was also perfectly placed to fulfil the requirements of virtually any sustainability system or accreditation.

In 2005 Ben Hancock joined the company and worked in Oscar’s specialist in-house spray teams for several years, before moving onto project management. In 2017, Ben was made Managing Director.

Oscar Acoustics are proud to have created a bespoke acoustic solutions market that did not previously exist in Great Britain, with products that give architects and interior designers the freedom to design without the constraints of traditional acoustic methods.

Oscar Acoustics are privileged to be able to continue to shape the acoustics industry and improve the user experience of buildings across the country.

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