Project Almanac

We’re not mentioning the ‘B’ word, however despite all the uncertainty and political confusion, our sector has quite literally carried on regardless. If you want a great example of this bulldog spirit, you only need to take a look at the amazing numbers of project entries that flooded into Mix Towers for last December’s Mixology North awards.

We’d like to have compiled a review where we featured each and every one, however, so large were the numbers of entries and shortlisters that we only have space for a selection of those who were recognised by our expert panel of judges. 

When we say recognised, we even introduced an exciting new innovation to this year’s awards. Due to the exceptional quality, our judges felt that a number of entries deserved more than merely being highly commended – and instead were presented with something far more tangible (and desirable); a Mix Merit. Enjoy.

Small Commercial Interiors

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Dragonfly Contracts Ltd – Eagle Lab Manchester
Welcoming Barclays into Union House, Eagle Lab Manchester offers an incredible and unique collaborative workspace, inviting and uniting all workers both socially and professionally. A brand new ground floor café space and unique auditorium have helped produce a place that Eagle Lab Manchester can call home.

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HLM – Balfour Beatty Leeds
The design and delivery of Balfour Beatty’s new Leeds office is the first project to come through the Design Guide programme, which HLM also developed with the client. The new space captures a change in design style and approach to working for this leading construction company.

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ingo interiors – Halton Housing, Waterfront Point
Ingo Interiors translated Halton Housing’s desire to change their working environment with all staff on one site; somewhere to come together to interact with each other. Ingo has created a place that reflects Halton’s culture – a modern, dynamic housing business that leads at the forefront of traditional innovation and potential.

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OBI – Douglas Scott
OBI has created a workspace for Douglas Scott which reflects the legal recruitment firm’s core values and reputation while encouraging collaboration among the team. The company’s identity was the key part of the design and colour pallet. This was done by creating a feature wall in the heart of the office space and gave the staff a sense of belonging.

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Opus 4 – SmartSearch, Ilkley
SmartSearch had outgrown their Guiseley office. They identified a new building in Ilkley, which would give them room to grow. The new space needed to attract and retain talent, and represent the new values and culture of the business. They turned to Opus 4 to design and deliver this outstanding project.

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Ovo Spaces – Terminal Warehouse
This Grade II listed Victorian Warehouse has been beautifully restored by Ovo Spaces and transformed into an open plan studio with adjoining multi-functional event space, and includes their very own designed and commissioned wide beam barge, which echoes the history of these incredible buildings in Sheffield’s Canal Basin.

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RLB – One King Street
RLB wanted to create a space that staff and visitors would take pride and ownership of. The Manchester design team were keen to ensure the office had a distinct ‘nod’ towards Manchester – and thus, the general theme of the office merges a prescriptive corporate identity with a heavy local influence.

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SpaceInvader – The Green Sand Foundry
The Green Sand Foundry is the brilliant new Leeds home to SpaceInvader & Ralph Capper, a creative hub designed to bring together designers, technicians, furniture designers and consultants to collaborate within one space. 

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tp bennett – CBRE, Manchester
Relocating 130 staff to the new building was driven by CBRE’s desire to create a more efficient working culture and welcoming space for clients, with the new workspace representing a significant step change for them, projecting a different culture and representation of the business. 

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Ultimate (Commercial Interiors) – Kirkstall Forge
This was a prestigious project for Ultimate to deliver, being CEG’s first flagship office development in a new community, featuring retail, leisure and community spaces. The project was intricate, with many bespoke details, while the programme was also very fast track – but the 16-week project was delivered both on time and on budget.

Medium Commercial Interiors

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CONCORDE BGW – Daniel Thwaites PLC Head Office and Brewery
Concorde BGW was briefed to create an exciting interior scheme and to make the most of the new rural site for Thwaites. They successfully designed a concept that included the full internal specification, supply and installation of decorative features and furniture, as well as the fit-out of a new training pub, cellar, conference and tack 

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Cube 8 Studio – Sorted Group
Cube 8 Studio have designed an environment that focuses on people’s ways of working, using natural materials and embodying the company’s DNA into the physical environment. By doing this they have not only increased productivity – and attraction by 50% – but have also uplifted people’s mood, emotions, happiness, health and wellbeing. 

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FaulknerBrowns – CEF IT HQ, Janet Nash House
Janet Nash House represents a major investment for City Electrical Factors. For the first time all of the IT teams and creative marketing teams have been brought together within one state-of-the-art office. Rich with various workplace environments, the building promotes activity based working.

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OBI – A0.com
Baskerville House is a classic example of late 1960’s brutalist architecture, which OBI wanted to celebrate and enhance, whilst also ensuring the AO.com ethos of sustainability and a people-centric culture was front and centre. The design approach was to have an honest response to the building fabric, exposing the columns and soffits, complementing them with natural finishes that reflected both the concrete structure and nature.

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SpaceInvader – CEG Kirkstall Forge
Number One Kirkstall Forge, home to the CEG office, designed by SpaceInvader, has won both a regional and national BCO Award for Commercial Workplace. BCO judges praised the way in which the building’s design pulls the outside in, creating a modern office, which makes the most of its truly inspiring location. 

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SPATIAL OFFICE ENVIRONMENTS – CarFinance 247
‘A beautifully cohesive design which manages to bring together the best workplace practices in supporting the employees’ work, lifestyle and mental wellbeing. When you get a great client with a clear brief, you get this amazing outcome,’ says Christina Belkacem, Head of Interior Design.

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tp bennett – Push Doctor
Founded in 2014, Push Doctor now totals circa 130 employees, with this new space providing an environment that feeds the business’s activities, and puts clients and staff at heart of the culture within a tech-driven atmosphere, where creativity is harnessed.

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TSK Group – Kellogg’s
HQ, Salford QuaysTSK created a vibrant, flexible headquarters for Kellogg’s that supports their progressive ambitions and objectives for cultural change. The new space fosters a collaborative, positive environment, with new ways of working for employees to feel inspired, whilst delighting customers and consumers, blending the brand’s legacy with the Kellogg’s of tomorrow. 

Large Commercial Interiors

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5plus architects – 101 Barbirolli Square
This project has seen 5plus transform a failing office building, which no longer met modern occupier requirements, into a prestigious new workplace capable of attracting leading tenants and achieving top-tier rents. A simple palette of colours, combined with high quality furniture and finishes, delivers an understated yet professional new office environment.

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Bluesky Design Interiors – Npower Leeds
Npower engaged Bluesky for this ambitious project to refit and refurbish accommodation for its consolidated workforce in Leeds. The design includes a number of green solutions and a variety of flexible innovations, including open plan soft areas and soundproof pods to facilitate communication and collaboration. 

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ID:SR Sheppard Robson – Bupa Place
Featuring interiors by ID:SR Sheppard Robson, Bupa Place is a 148,000 sq ft project split over six floors, with wellness and productivity the foundation for Bupa’s new home in the north. 

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iDEA – Bank of New York Mellon, One Piccadilly Gardens
In 2017, the Bank Of New York Mellon celebrated it’s 50th year of business in the UK and iDEA were tasked to reimagine their Manchester offices. They created a flagship workspace to act as a global facility, fit for the future. 

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OBI – Canada House
The £3 million transformation of the 70,000 sq ft Grade II Listed Canada House has revealed and restored lost architectural features and fittings. OBI have complemented these features with a new, fresh design, which has created a thoroughly modern office environment.

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SpaceInvader – Zenith
Zenith Vehicle Contracts showcases the flagship office development at Kirkstall Forge in Leeds, lauded as a benchmark in design, quality, flexibility and efficiency in commercial workspace in Yorkshire. The new space is across the top three floors of the development and includes spectacular roof level meeting rooms.

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74 – Hox Haus
74 imagined Hox Haus from a derelict Grade II listed, two-storey, Victorian brick building set in a semi-rural location, just outside Egham. The repurposed Victorian gymnasium has been brought back to life as the Gatehouse for the wider Hox Park’student campus, newly-created by developers Moorfield Group for students attending Royal Holloway, University of London. The clubhouse serves as a vibrant social, study amenity space and a centrepiece to the park.

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5plus architects – Southway Housing Trust
5plus has adopted a no-compromise approach to the refurbishment of this dated office, the overarching approach being to mend the building and give it a new lease of life as the home of Southway Housing Trust. Flexibility and collaboration underpinned everydesign decision, with the brief informed throughextensive stakeholder consultation.

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CPMG Architects – Teesside University Library
The library is at the hub of the campus and is a focus for learning, research, collaboration and contemplation. The key element of the library was the student experience, which was to be lively and inspiring. CPMG has created a space that provides diverse learning environments and contemporary design. 

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DAY Architectural – Rodney Street, The Business School, Liverpool John Moore’s University
Liverpool John Moores University purchased 4-6 Rodney Street for the business school and was focused on providing a sophisticated historical restoration to a culturally important building in Liverpool. Aimed at post-graduates and industry professionals, this project looked to create something special in the portfolio.

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FWP – LIFE
LIFE (Learning Inspiration Future Employment) is a first of its kind. This training, education, experience centre facilitates 4-16 year olds, who will be immersed into a medical experience day. The aim was to provide education that is fun and will inspire the next generation to work in the NHS. 

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ID:SR Sheppard Robson – Cloth Hall Court, Leeds Beckett University
Cloth Hall Court is a dedicated conference venue in Leeds city centre. The building’s cloth selling history inspired the refurbishment and design of each conference and boardroom. The main hall provides visitors with hospitality and refreshment facilities. ID:SR Sheppard Robson undertook the full refurbishment of this historically important building.