Midlands & East Anglia

From Pub to Student Palace

Having two top Universities, Nottingham is home to more than 40,000 full time students – meaning that student housing is in ever increasing demand. 

Just outside the city centre, The Gregory Hotel in its previous life had been one of Nottingham’s oldest pubs, providing pints for the locals of Radford for over 100 years. However since June, renovation work has been taking place on the old pub – transforming it into six vibrant student flats, with a total of 24 rooms available for rent.

The design work on The Gregory has been carried out by Architectural Design Consultancy ltd, which was set up by Nick Kirkland in 2002.  With 20 years of previous experience behind him, Nick had the aim of providing a personal architectural and development consultancy service to both the public and private sectors.

Since then the company has gone from strength to strength, working on healthcare, residential, industrial and commercial projects – most recently completing work renovating and converting The Gregory into new purpose built student accommodation.

With fully furnished bedrooms and en suite, new dining and kitchen areas, televisions, wi-fi access and with good transport links, ADC’s latest project has gone from pub to student palace.

Although the company’s first attempt at student accommodation, they have had considerable experience of residential projects in the past. Having previously designed apartments and flats across Staffordshire the project at The Gregory was always in safe hands.

As a mark of quality, ADC ltd has been retained by a number of housing developers and associations in order to prepare feasibility studies, planning and working drawings. The design team at the company have a detailed understanding of the Code for Sustainable Homes, Buildings for Life and Lifetime Homes.

Describing the beginning of the project at The Gregory, ADC ltd Director, Robin Hathaway said:

“The biggest hurdle at the planning stage of this project was meeting planning policy and justifying how we were going to improve the area for the neighbours.

“I think the residents will certainly benefit from new student accommodation, the pub was open late, it was noisy and encouraged a certain amount of antisocial behaviour. This new use will complement the neighbourhood”

Talking of the build itself, Robin added:

“In terms of the build, probably the trickiest element was trying to find a suitable structural solution to best create the necessary space required and without it being too costly. After finalising the design, we undertook a value engineering process in house and managed to work up the best solution in the end.

“The majority of the work carried out on The Gregory was internal and mainly involved the fit out of the existing space. Careful space planning was key. New mechanical and electrical systems were installed throughout and the design had to work with these new systems”

“The system was a bit different in that it wasn’t a heating system individually per flat, it was centrally served which was more efficient, more secure and this approach meant we could retain the attractive building facade without unsightly flues”

“On top of the structural alterations the building fabric also received a facelift. External walls were thermally lined and existing floors treated to improve the sound insulation qualities.

“The building also had a previous stairwell extension that was poorly built and had signs of subsidence. With the assistance of the consulting engineers we managed to repair and retain the stairwell as part of the means of escape for the new student apartments

“The building had also undergone some crude alteration of the rear elevation in the past where windows had come out and poorly matched windows had been put in. We took the opportunity to reinstate previously bricked up openings with windows that matched the existing and made good previous alterations. This helped the building regain its original appearance”

Work began on The Gregory in June this year and was completed in October- ready to welcome the next crop of students into Nottingham with new accommodation.

ADC ltd was able to deliver this project quickly and smoothly due to its specialist experience and creative design team. The in house team is split into two specific sections, the concept and design team and the technical team- both overseen by directors.

Supported by the very latest and most advanced 3D CAD software available, the design team can ably present clients with a virtual model in order to maximize understanding and achieve satisfying results. Clients are invited to take a walk through the building or fly around the development, resulting in a seamless progression from the design to table to the project completion.

In addition, the technical team at ADC ltd prides itself on an expert knowledge of the build process and construction techniques.

Speaking of the technical team, ADC ltd Director, Robin Hathaway said: “They constantly strive to provide effective and concise construction information that not only ensures a smooth build but also within budget.”

Whilst ADC ltd covered the design side and project management, Uptown Property Developments carried out the building works.

A subsidiary of Downtown Property Developments ltd, Uptown Property Developments was founded in 2009 and is based in Leicestershire.

For more information on Architectural Design Consultancy ltd and their projects then visit www.adc-limited.co.uk.

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Roma Publications

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