Premier Retail

Foyles Chelmsford

Written by Roma Publications

Foyles: Chelmsford


Opened in September of this year, the famous bookstore brand Foyles has a new store in Chelmsford, Essex, as part of the Bond Street shopping centre that has recently been built. It is the company’s third store outside of London.

Foyles, established in 1903, is a renowned British independent bookstore with four London stores and one in both Birmingham and Bristol. Their largest and most famous store is their five-storey Charing Cross Road branch, which is known for covering every specialism and now has the largest Foreign Language selection in UK.

The Chelmsford site, which is not far from the ancestral home of the Foyle family, houses books across two floors and includes an in store café as well as exclusive events with best selling authors, children’s creative activities, book clubs and live music as part of its offering.

Externally the Chelmsford Foyles store is quite striking. The double-height frontage uses glass to make use of the store’s semi-corner aspect. “It opens up the side of the building and brings the store interior to the exterior,” commented Laura Kingdon, Senior Designer at Lustedgreen. “The classic red Foyles logo is depicted by internally illuminated signage on the front. We worked closely with Foyles to create a 21st Century bookstore which utilises digital technology in conjunction with real books in a welcoming and exciting environment.”

On entry to the 4,300ft2 store, customers are greeted with a dramatic double-height space with bookshelves on the left and on the right a washed oak staircase that leads up to the first floor, which has a gallery overlooking the ground floor. The staircase has a feature wall, which has typography similar to letterpress that is carved in Relief.  “It’s dramatic but we were careful not to make it too imposing on the bookstore to allow the books to speak for themselves”, commented Laura.

Working with Oakwoods, Lustedgreen designed the concept of this site to build upon the innovations introduced in the Bristol and Birmingham stores. Digital technology is used to enhance the customer experience with large format monitors throughout the store and a video wall in the shop front. “The screens inside the store display events and information as well as guiding the customer through the store,” commented Laura.

Faceted shelving is used within the store to help separate the different subject areas. “The colour scheme is light and contemporary with accents of colour throughout the store,” added Laura.

Towards the rear of the store on the ground floor is a fun and vibrant children’s area which not only allows children to immerse themselves in the book environment but also invites them to participate in activities such as colouring and games. The café also sits on the ground floor and has seating on both the ground and first floors allowing customers to relax with a coffee and a pastry whilst reading.


ddd design Ltd

ddd design Ltd is a UK based company with more than 24 years’ of lighting design experience. The company offers two main services, fee based consultancy, whereby the company provides a detailed breakdown of agreed works or design & supply services, which sees ddd design Ltd oversee the entire package from start to finish.

Whatever the size of the project, whether it’s a trendy underground bar in London or one of the world’s largest shopping malls in Asia, ddd design Ltd can provide a high quality and friendly service. Past clients include the likes of Peugeot, Citroen, Vauxhall, Adidas, CoCo Di Mama, Itsu, Juicy Couture and Joules amongst others.

Most recently, ddd design Ltd were involved in Foyles, working from the initial concept sketches to produce 3D illumination levels, luminaire specification documents and RCP lighting plans.

Sean Beaumont of ddd design Ltd, said:

“We produced detailed lighting drawings, plus detailed illumination methods and ensured any ongoing maintenance was minimised.

“We regularly attended the site during the development to ensure that the delivery, and installation continued as planned. The final involvement was to ensure that the LED luminaries were correctly installed and that we achieved the required illumination levels.

“Foyles is a fantastic book store with a great heritage. All of the contractors involved in the project kept their sights aimed high and fully focused on achieving the overall aesthetic that the client desired.”

Sean added:

“At ddd design Ltd we have a great design team with attention to detail and the ability to produce designs for both regular lighting schemes and unusual bespoke product development. We pride ourselves in our speed and flexibility to work on the fine details within the fast moving retail sector. Every part of the company understands lighting and can gather its resources to help achieve our client’s expectations.”

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Roma Publications

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