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English Heritage is a registered charity that cares for over 400 historic buildings, monuments and sites - from world-famous prehistoric sites to grand medieval castles. They wanted to relocate their office into a more contemporary environment in a prime location in 100 Wood Street in the heart of the city.
The brief was to create an exciting new space that encouraged staff to work in a more collaborative way, providing them with a more engaging environment. The large breakout space is a key element in this design, and it offers staff a distinct space, separate from the desking, where staff can socialise and work collaboratively. The vibrant manifestations throughout the meeting rooms and wider office space inject colour into the space but also proudly showcases the unique work of English Heritage.
The tea point and break out area are multi-purpose spaces and offer a huge amount of flexibility in the office. The tea point draws people from their desks and provides a new communal hub to the office. Introducing the sofas and soft seating serves as a breakout space but also offers staff an alternative working environment away from their desk. Having a range of meeting spaces to accommodate staff visiting from other locations was important to English Heritage and having left a more traditional, cellular environment, we wanted to create a variety of meeting environments.
Our vision was to introduce collaboration spaces, phone booths and a mixture of both small and large meeting rooms. The larger meeting rooms are divided by a folding wall which can be rearranged to provide a space for board meetings to be held in the office. By grouping the collaboration booths, communal seating and central tea point away from the desking, there is now a space that naturally draws staff together and improves communication. There is good natural light available in the space and we wanted to retain this in the open plan and the breakout spaces to energise the office and promote better staff wellbeing.
The manifestations throughout the office showcase some of the sites cared for by English Heritage and we wanted to make the space unmistakeably part of their brand and identity. The photography adds a fun element into the space to help the new English Heritage office break away from the more traditional environment they had left.
Each meeting room is named after English Heritage sites across the country and features a vibrant graphic of the site which showcases the story behind the site. As each site is something specific to English Heritage, it gives more relevance to the space and creates a focal point for each of the rooms.