At Chetwoods our mission is to educate, inspire and guide our clients to make the choices that will benefit and enrich our lives, our places and our planet. We are always looking to push the boundaries of design and explore new initiatives.

We have had a busy first six months of 2022.  Here are a few of our highlights:

New Faces

We have continued to grow the practice and have welcomed new colleagues in all our offices in the UK and overseas. Our 22 new starters include directors, architects, architectural technologists and Part I and Part II architectural assistants who have joined our teams to support our expanding portfolio of work.

We all met up in April when our postponed Christmas Party became a brilliant day-long Springmas Celebration with a typically competitive Chetwoods Treasure Hunt around central London followed by dinner and live music in the evening.

Our growth in terms of business and size was reflected in our rise up to number 44 in the AJ100 2022 ranking of top architectural practices.

New Roles

Our Managing Director Tim Ward has recently been promoted to CEO, responsible for the strategic direction and day-to-day management of the business. Since he joined Chetwoods in 2003 he has been instrumental in developing ground-breaking state-of-the-art environmental and regenerative schemes for the practice.  He is actively involved with the UK Green Building Council as part of their UKGBC Leaders Forum and is a member of the NLA Expert Panel on Industrial and Logistics.

Laurie Chetwood, Chairman of Chetwoods, commented:
“Tim is an invaluable and highly-respected colleague who has been hugely influential in the growth of Chetwoods since he joined the practice nearly twenty years ago. As Managing Director he supported the business through challenges and prosperity, and I am confident that Chetwoods will continue to flourish under his leadership as CEO.”

New Clients & Projects

A wide range of new clients and new projects has allowed us to demonstrate our holistic approach towards varied architectural typologies, while continuing to push boundaries and exceed expectations.

Our project teams always make sure that every scheme has been fully analysed from the outset to ensure that it maximises opportunities for the site and the client while reflecting the key objectives driven by our specialist teams: Studio puts the human nature, imagination, and instinct into our designs. Thrive ensures that they are ethical, environmental, and healthy. Works makes them into exemplars of construction and technological performance.

Landmark R&D

We’ve progressed a landmark project in Surrey where we are trialling a whole new way of designing, using current circular design principles, that combines art, architecture and landscape with our research into wellbeing and emotional response to places and spaces.

The site will become a test-bed ‘laboratory’ to research, monitor and apply the ingredients for wellbeing in a built environment. It will apply new sustainable and wellbeing ideas to create an adaptable holistic development that demonstrates how sustainable living and enjoyable living can go hand-in-hand for education, exploration, collaboration and enjoyment.

We’ve also

  • Designed a new school boarding house with the key criteria of the brief to create a building that would evoke happiness and wellbeing. As part of the design process we adopted a data-centric approach and trialled new technology which measures emotional response to analyse whether the design promoted happiness.
  • Delivered a high-spec industrial warehouse which is the first in the logistics/industrial sector to incorporate a pioneering Digital Twin approach to its design and subsequent building management for Baytree Logistics Properties at Fenny Lock in Milton Keynes.
  • Developed innovative concepts for a tree house design based on principles of biomimicry and biophilia for a Kew Gardens competition. The scheme is adaptable for performance, education and collaboration uses as part of our ongoing research into designing happiness and wellbeing into the built environment.
  • Our China project team has continued its collaborative relationship with Jiang & Associates Design (J&A) and added to our portfolio of metro stations with further interiors for a series of stations in Shenzhen and Xian that reflect their natural and cultural contexts.
  • Our German colleagues have applied our logistics expertise in the UK to help their clients roll-out new approaches and templates for both out of town and urban industrial and logistics developments in Germany.

New Partnerships & Research

We are involved in a number of research projects that support the evolution of our industry towards a more sustainable model.

  • We’re working with researchers at the University of Cambridge to trial new cutting-edge technologies that analyse human emotional response to design. We have been trialling on live projects a data-centric approach which uses affective computing to recognize, interpret, process, and simulate human feelings, emotions and moods. During the London Festival of Architecture we held a Studio Late event where guests at our Clerkenwell Green studio were able to try out some of these technologies for themselves. Our research has been recognised in a shortlisting for the AJ100 Innovation of the Year Award 2022 and in the Digital Innovation in Design category at the Digital Construction Awards 2022.
  • We’ve progressed our research into how to apply Circular Economy principles in our architectural design work based on repurposing existing structures and applying circular economy principles throughout all elements and stages of an architectural project.
  • We’re collaborating with a world-leading interdisciplinary team from the University of Cambridge and the University of Birmingham that has recently secured research funding from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) to research the reuse of structural steel in construction.
  • We’re exploring opportunities with ARLI (Alternative Raw Materials with Low Impact) at the University of Birmingham for research projects to develop innovative low-carbon products and processes.
  • Our Studio team has organised a selection of expeditions to visit existing buildings, galleries and sites to review the work of our peers and stimulate our creativity. On these visits we have been to see the Serpentine Pavilion, the new Google building at King’s Cross and we will shortly take a trip to Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.

New Offices

We’ve opened another office in the Midlands and will be opening a new one in Cologne, Germany.  Our London studio has moved to a new space in Clerkenwell that has been designed for us by our Studio team.

New Awards

We’ve been shortlisted for four categories in the AJ100 Awards and also shortlisted for the Digital Construction Awards. The short-listings include:

  • Innovation of the Year for our pioneering research into the using new cutting-edge digital technologies in an innovative way to capture and measure human emotional responses to building design and provide data-driven insights into the design of places and spaces.
  • Sustainability Initiative of the Year for our work to develop extra filters for the NBS Source database which focus on the environmental impact of products featured in this widely-used materials specification resource.
  • Collaboration of the Year for a partnership between our Thrive team and Dr Craig Jones, the founder of Circular Ecology, to develop and implement a new collaborative approach to sustainability in construction projects that helps clients clearly identify and achieve their sustainability goals.
  • Sustainability Champion of the Year for our Thrive Project Manager Taleen Josefsson’s proactive commitment to sustainability in the built environment.

In the Press

We’ve featured in a number of press publications:

Our Chairman Laurie Chetwood talked to the RIBA Journal, as part of its Hindsight series, about pushing boundaries and the holistic relationship between art, architecture and landscape, and was interviewed by Pro Landscaper about the importance and value that the landscape can add to the built environment.

Neil Spiller interviewed Laurie about the relationship of his art and architecture and the natural world for AD Magazine’s From Another Perspective, and Laurie also spoke to ILK about the relationship between man and nature through architectural design and art, and storytelling, art, psychology, and environmental responsibility.

FC&A Future Constructor and Architect featured a profile of our CEO Tim Ward, from what made him follow a career in architecture to future challenges the industry will face. Tim also participated in NLA’s Logistics Conference ‘Meeting London’s Growing Demand’.

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