Cath Kidston – the home of quirky and modern vintage designs – has recently been introduced to Birmingham Grand Central, after opening its doors to the public on 24th September.
Cath Kidston’s in-house store design team began work on site in July this year, collaborating with contractors B Batch and Mace Construction.
A number of various phases were carried out, including electrical and mechanical services, drylining walls and ceilings, flooring works, racking and storage, and decoration. Life systems were also fitted for safety purposes, including fire alarms, sprinklers and PA systems.
Premier Retail wanted to ask Steven Brimacombe – Head of Store Design and Visual Merchandising at Cath Kidston – a few questions with regards to the new store. Steven commented:
“Cath Kidston is opening its first stand-alone store in Birmingham City Centre located in the new Birmingham Grand Central shopping centre project. In previous years, the brand has had a concession situated in Selfridges Birmingham but with the launch of the new Grand Central project, it felt like the right time to move into launching a stand-alone destination store for the brand, especially in a key city like Birmingham.
“As with all of our retail stores, we’ve created a space that is reflective of its location; Birmingham and the rich history of the city. It’s important to us that we entertain the shopper using local memorabilia and fun design features to celebrate the heritage of Birmingham and reinforce Cath Kidston as a quintessentially British brand. Our design approach uses nostalgic and quirky details mixed with modern materials and design construction.”
The fixtures and fittings were of specialist bespoke joinery and were incorporated displaying merchandising systems, as well as a modern bespoke glazed shop front. Many feature vintage displays were also integrated in the store, including typewriters fixed to the walls, a light box and feature hanging systems, adding a final touch of eccentricity.
Steven told us:
“It means a great deal to us as a brand that we’re in a position to be involved in such a prestigious and exciting project like Birmingham Grand Central. We’re finally in a position to be able to fully put our stamp on the city’s retail portfolio by creating our own unique brand environment to showcase our products.”
“Thank you to all those involved in the project, both the internal team at Cath Kidston and the external partners we’ve worked with throughout the project, it’s going to be a fantastic store.”
A shopping centre like no other, the site offers the perfect shopping destination whilst housing a train station. Grand Central and the redeveloped station will provide customers and passengers with a unique shopping and station experience, with easy access by rail or road from across the West Midlands and beyond.
In order to find out a little more information on the project, Premier Retail caught up with Leon McQuade, of B Batch. Leon explained:
“Network Rail and Mace Construction are working on the regeneration of the Birmingham New Street station complex, which is a multi-phased programme developing one of the UK’s busiest transport interchanges. This is a sophisticated project as it includes the comprehensive redevelopment of the station, as well as the delivery of the new retail centre, Grand Central, all while keeping the existing train station fully operational.”
The exquisite domed atrium was designed to let the light flood inside, with a £150million state-of-the-art precinct sat beneath, that will comprise more than 60 premium shops and restaurants offering a wide range of products. A spectacular new multimedia screen also features at the Hill Street entrance to Grand Central.
When asked if he faced any challenges during the project, Leon replied:
“As with any project there have been difficulties encountered along the way, however, with the expertise of our team at B Batch group, our collaborative working relationship with Cath Kidston and the helpful assistance of Network Rail we’ve managed to overcome these efficiently and effectively.”
An inspirational brand, Cath Kidston was established in London, 1993. Offering fashion items, bags and accessories, home furnishings and beauty products, the store has a must-see collection. Also featuring a kids section and baby section, this is a great store for mums who are looking for stylish essentials from rucksacks and stationery for their children, to changing bags and meal time sets for mum and baby.
“We are very proud to be working for and with Cath Kidston, and we are very grateful to have built up a long-standing working relationship over the past four years, and to have been appointed to assist with the fit outs of their stores in the UK and Overseas.”