Project Handover, Cambridge

Forge Design Studio have been working with Volker Fitzpatrick on a major re-modelling and refurbishment project for a higher education client in Cambridge.

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The project required an extensive de-cant programme to vacate the occupied spaces. This  involved working closely with the Estates Team and the Contractor’s Site Team to gain an appreciation and understanding of the whole campus. The main campus has been an operational live environment through-out the process which has entailed out-of-hours working and a great deal of flexibility on the part of the Contractor.

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It has been a highly technical project involving retro-fitting steelwork and FDS have been involved in all aspects of the project – from strategic accommodation studies to detailed surveys of existing furniture, fittings and equipment within existing spaces. We have produced sketch options, g.a’s, specifications, detailed schedules and working drawings. We also carried out monthly site visits and spot checks to review progress and assist with quality control.

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Volker Fitzpatrick made great progress on the major re-modelling and refurbishment and kept ahead of schedule. We carried out our final site visits as the end of June, and the project is due for handover shortly.

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North Brook End House – Full Planning and Listed Building Consent!

Forge Design Studio is delighted to confirm that our project for our client, the Ware Family, at North Brook End House has been granted consent. The building is Grade II Listed and is a very fine south-facing Victorian House set in an extensive garden. We have worked closely with the family to develop a series of additions and modifications to create an improved balance of accommodation which is commensurate with its location and setting.

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We have liaised with our fellow consultants Cambridge Architectural Research, who produced the Heritage Statement and Gawn Associates on the Structural Engineering Strategy.

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Even though we say so ourselves it had a very smooth route through the planning process at South Cambs District Council thanks to a thorough and comprehensive approach which was complimented by the Case Officer.

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The project will now be worked up in detail with the input from the team to get ready for a start on site later this year.

We look forward to the opportunity to see the project through to completion!!


 

Keeping Busy!!

We have been particularly busy over the last few weeks, completing and submitting three significant planning applications.

Manor Farm, Andover

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Firstly, working with Adrian Barker at Lucid Planning we completed the design proposals for the redevelopment of Manor Farm, nr Andover. We have been employed directly by the site owners on the development of the former farm building site for residential use.

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Situated in open countryside between the villages of Monxton and Abbotts Ann this has been a long process which required some innovative thinking to resolve the strategic planning issues. This has also involved extensive negotiation with the Planning Authority at Test Valley and local residents pressure groups. It has been a lengthy project extending over the last 18 months and the application is now heading towards a committee date in the middle of June. Fingers crossed.

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The design has been developed in close co-operation with the landscape architect and has played particular regard to the setting and context with the open countryside. The original farmyard buildings have been retained to create a sense of continuity and the shared open space will act as a landscape buffer as well as creating opportunities for allotments and community facilities

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North Brook End House, Steeple Morden

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Secondly, by contrast, we have submitted a Full Planning and Listed Building Consent Application for North Brook End House, Steeple Morden. The site overlooks our long-standing project at the neighbouring Stud Farm and is for a private client.

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The work has involved detailed design proposals to reflect the need to respect the historic fabric. We have also involved Cambridge Architectural Research (CAR Ltd) who have prepared the accompanying Heritage Statement.

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The proposals are for a two-storey rear extension, which has been carefully integrated with the existing building, as well as internal alterations to create a new en-suite facility. These elements required a great deal of detailed work to ensure they could be satisfactorily implemented without disturbing the existing building fabric.

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South Street, Bishops Stortford 

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Finally, we have completed the design work on our town centre project in Bishops Stortford. Our client has purchased a former Co-operative Buildingon the corner of South Street and Station Road, which has, frankly, seen better days!!

 

The existing floors have been re-modelled to suit flexible future uses with an additional floor of residential apartments being added at second floor level. New external treatment to the elevations is proposed in response to the setting of the Conservation Area.

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Detailed massing models have been prepared utilising a 3D base model prepared by Joanna James Ltd. We have inserted our site sketch-up model into the wider context so that the impact can be fully considered.

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Sancerre Barn – Permission Granted – First one of the New Year!!

Forge Design Studio is delighted to confirm that one of the first e-mails received on our return to work in 2019 was confirmation that approval had been granted for the re-modelling and refurbishment of the Barn Conversion at Cold Harbour Farm.

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Located in the rural village of Ashwell the commission came from a recommendation from Sarah and Douglas at North Brook End Stud. Always nice to be introduced by an existing client!

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The owners had bought the Barn in the knowledge that a substantial amount of work might be needed to turn it into their dream home. We have worked closely with them to create a completely new plan arrangement which will create the type of free-flowing, welcoming contemporary space that they were seeking.

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The re-organisation of the existing bedrooms and removal of a long dark corridor together with the new rear extension will substantially improve the arrangement of public living and private spaces. We’ve also opened-up the relationship to the outside garden spaces, both front and back.

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We look forward to developing the working drawings and assisting our clients in the procurement and construction of the scheme.  


 

The Lion at Clanville – Permission Granted!!

Forge Design Studio are delighted to confirm that, in November, the final proposals for The Lion at Clanville were granted!

Located in the rural village of Clanville to the west of Andover, The Lion had been left vacant for over 12 months until our clients, The Simpson family, purchased the site in 2014.

After a year of renovations the family have effectively managed to transform the pub into a popular and locally supported business, so much so that the pub is now placed within the Top 5 on TripAdvisor’s best restaurants in Andover!

 

The Lion’s function room has become a great venue for parties and wedding receptions and as its popularity increased, the need for accommodation on site became clear. Our brief was to create 10 premier bedrooms including a bridal suite and a family/accessible room within the Lions grounds to serve the needs of those attending functions, to attract passing trade and those on short breaks.

 

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This further investment into the pub compliments the existing hospitality on offer to help secure the long-term future use for the pub. We are very excited to continue working on the project and we look forward to seeing the proposals come to life on site in the New Year.

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The Annual Forge Design CPD Day Out 2018!

This year’s annual blockbuster CPD Trip took place on Thursday 22nd November.

London was the destination: first class seats on the 9.38 to Waterloo was a good start!!

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Mike pulled a few strings, making use of a great family connection, and we checked into the new Bloomberg HQ building in London at 11.15. Special thanks to David Hellier for hosting and giving up time in his busy day to show us round. As you’ll no doubt be aware Foster + Partners won the people’s vote and were then announced as the winner of the Stirling Prize in Oct 2018. It was therefore doubly exciting to have access to the building which was truly impressive.

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A lot has been written about the building which displays a ‘state of the art’ approach to communications – from the casual inter-action of colleagues bumping into each other over a cup of coffee to a global digital age with 24 hours news coverage being broadcast from the tv studio within the building. We can only add that it is one heck of a contrast from The Forge and lunch in the garden!!

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Bloomerg – 2018 RIBA Stirling Prize Winner

We visited the Mithraeum SPACE in the basement which displays some of the 600 roman artefacts found during the construction of the building. It’s worth half an hour of your time to visit and can be found adjacent to the new Bloomberg tube station exit.


 

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This was followed by a short walk between venues, which is a bit like a spot the building competition – it’s easy to forget just how rich in architectural heritage – past and present – the square mile is.

Lunch was in Searcys at the Gherkin – giving rise to comments about our heads being in the clouds!! Restricted visibility meant that we didn’t get the full panoramic effect but it did add a certain mystical quality.


 

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Our tribute to Sir Norm continued with a trip to the British Museum – easy to lose yourselves amongst the exhibits for a few hours. The Great Court looked brilliant at dusk. As a great public space which was still full of visitors at 5.00pm it provided an interesting contrast to the rarified atmosphere of the Bloomberg.

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The “Stolen Friend”


 

Handily, the Museum is just round the corner from the Holborn Dining Rooms. A choice from 300 gins provided the traditional close to a Forge Design Studio day out!

A Waterloo M&S buffet on the first class travel home finished off the day nicely!


 

Special thanks to our Director, Mike, for organising yet another a brilliant day out featuring an exclusive building tour, first class travel, great food and lots of laughs. We will have to try very hard to top this next year!

 


 

The Performance Studio Opening Night at Broadstone Golf Club

Forge Design Studio were delighted to be invited to the official opening of The Performance Studio at Broadstone Golf Club. We worked closely with the team at Broadstone Golf Club to realise their dream of creating a state of the art indoor training facility within the undercroft of the existing Clubhouse.

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The area to the rear of the Club had been undisturbed for 30 years before the guys in the pro shop hatched a plan to utilise the space. We drew up initial plans and liaised with GAP Structural Engineers to produce the fully developed proposals.

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After a great deal of hard work by all parties, (and numerous iterations!), the final result was revealed to club members and guests at the Opening Ceremony last Friday. Its an absolutely fantastic facility which will allow the Professional Team to conduct teaching and training all year round as well as giving the opportunity to play the great courses of the world without leaving the comfort of the studio!!

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Mike now has no excuse to start next year’s golf season with the same high handicap!!