Recognition for Neal’s Yard Remedies
The impressive £4m Neal’s Yard Remedies expansion project – which was successfully delivered last summer – has been shortlisted for a RICS (South West) Award. The extension project is in the running for an award within the category of ‘Best Commercial’ project.
The extension scheme involved the expansion of production, laboratory and office facilities at Neal’s Yard Remedies Headquarters in Gillingham. The project also included the creation of a new retail outlet, additional office space and associated landscaping to improve car parking facilities.
Work began on the project in spring 2015. Main Contractors for the scheme were Henry W Pollard & Sons, while Boon Brown Architects provided architectural services.
Helen Cooper, managing director of Neal’s Yard Remedies said:
“Neal’s Yard Remedies is a rapidly expanding business, with international business becoming an important part of our sales revenues. This expansion was developed to look ahead at 10 years’ of capacity planning within our factory site, as well as to accommodate increased numbers of office and laboratory based staff. The project was a vital part of our growth programme.”
“As a vital employer in the local area, Neal’s Yard Remedies remain committed to our Dorset site and our outstanding teams who work there. Approximately 60% of our current workforce lives within 5 miles of our Peacemarsh site and the work that we undertook to expand our manufacturing capacity for the next 5-10 years has ensured job security for these local employees.”
The original buildings were an iconic local landmark, therefore when approaching the extension project the team needed to maintain the core values of the original design, while developing it to meet the future needs of the business. The new design positioned the new retail and office spaces towards the front of the site, while exposed glulam beams and a scented living wall created interesting and environmentally friendly touches to the site.
Helen Cooper said: “The new extensions continue the Neal’s Yard Remedies ethos for sustainability and efficiency. Apart from the living wall features on the new office area and the warehouse extension, the buildings were constructed to meet a ‘fabric first’ principle, to deliver high thermal fabric and mitigate energy use.
“The offices are passive vented with external brise soliel to reduce solar gain influence in the summer but attract solar warmth in the winter. Renewable energy is utilised with expansive photovoltaic panelling on the mono-pitch roofs and rain water harvesting is used extensively on site. Manufacturing rooms need to be mechanically vented but staff areas are naturally vented and enjoy the wide country side setting.”
“This was a challenging project, and as with all ‘Grand Designs’ not short of its own trials and tribulations. Our team had to put up with less than ideal working conditions, but everyone really appreciates the potential that this investment has now delivered.”