As we struggled to find a factory facility to meet our exacting needs and standards, we took our own advice and used our skills to do what we do best - to design and build our own bespoke manufacturing facility.
Our brief to ourselves: an exterior to inspire, and to convey a level of design excellence befitting our reputation; an interior to be practical, to give us segregated preparation, machining, assembly and finishing areas with the most technically advanced equipment in our field, giving flow and connection to ancillary planning, office and client space.
The result: The HG Building - a 22,000 sq ft building displaying a level of architectural design not normally associated with a functional production facility. The HG Building has a presence and a landmark quality which echoes all that is at the essence of Michael Stephenson and the Herrington Gate philosophy.
The final specification: The exterior fuses a palate of modern materials, blending Iroko - a sustainable species of teak - with exposed steel and glass, brought together with aluminium cladding powder-coated in a carefully selected shade of slate grey.
Internally it is no ordinary facility: State of the art machinery characterises the machining area, utilised to the full by our dedicated team of craftsmen. Here, and in the assembly area, huge photographs and plans of past projects cover the walls as a reminder of previous achievements to be equalled, or bettered. A frameless glass wall, with automatic doors, allows full visual but a practical sound buffer between this area and the Production Office.
The energy efficiency of the whole building focuses around the vast heating and extraction system, as pictured above, all wood waste from production is the sole fuel supply for heating to the building.
Throughout the production and presentation areas the slate grey and warm timber themes from the exterior are continued in the fixtures and fittings, furniture and storage. Touch screen operation of intelligent lighting, heating, security, external planting irrigation and air conditioning systems are based in this area.
A bespoke staff kitchen and chill-out zone with full media facilities ensure that employees are not forgotten in our desire to achieve design excellence, even the toilet facilities feature Porcelanosa tiles, polished concrete floors and Smoked Ash cubicles. A wet room facility makes cycling or jogging to work a viable option with staff able to arrive in time to shower before the day starts.
The Presentation Suite is no less than expected, with a scheme of Smoked Ash, grey glass and LED lighting against a wall of slate. Three wall mounted flat screens and two further desk screens allow clients to be navigated around complex designs, enabling cross referencing with an infinite number of library images from many sources and allowing them a vision of their finished project from our boardroom table.
Not only the physical design elements, but also the detailed attention to the ease of functionality of this whole building, for both staff and clients alike, are clear illustrations of the all encompassing Herrington Gate approach to each project, and indeed the very personality of the company, whether we are designing for ourselves, or for our clients.