Skip to Content

SMR and Winvic Construction relationship strengthens


SMR Architects are pleased to announce that their relationship with Winvic Construction over the course of 2016 and into 2017 has strengthened, providing architectural services and more so BIM related services.

Both SMR and Winvics drive to adopt BIM Level 2 Processes, as well as BIM forming a key part of client requirements, has seen a series of opportunities develop on behalf of Winvic to assist with setting up strategies and processes to get the most out of BIM through the construction period, with SMR undertaking a BIM Information Manager / Coordinator role.

Over the course of 2016 we have been involved with a series of different clients and design teams all with a varying understanding of BIM, including Prologis, Roxhill and Lidl.  We have seen common themes working with all teams and a clear drive to implement and utilise BIM processes to enhance the design and construction process.  In addition to this we are now starting to develop and shape the information they require at handover to assist with ongoing operation and maintenance and this is further developing how we work together as a team throughout the project to respond to these requirements.

Tim Reeve, Technical Director for Winvic Construction said:

We are very happy to be developing this relationship with SMR and collectively we are developing and streamlining our processes to respond to clients BIM Requirements.  SMR’s team are always passionate about BIM workflows to enhance the design and construction phases and this has assisted us as a business to develop and challenge our own internal processes to inform how we approach BIM.  We look forward to developing this relationship in 2017.

3d-building-cutaway-isometric-final-b 04 Office Structural Model, Ambient NDC for Waitrose

3D-Isometric Cutaway-Final

SMR Residential Conversion complete


As part of our Small Works programme, SMR recently completed overseeing the conversion of a former agricultural barn to a superior residential property of some 3,500sqft. Positioned in both Harrogate Green Belt and the Crimple Valley SLA, the property has large areas of glazing to make the most of the commanding views it benefits from across the Crimple Valley. Internally, timber reclaimed from adjacent barns feature heavily, along with exposed stonework. There is a strong mix of traditional barn conversion and modern new living space with glazed balustrades and contemporary installations. Large open, double height, spaces in both the main living area and main bedroom suite provide real interest.

The house is supported by an environmental regime which utilises ground source heating, solar panels, mechanical ventilation, rainwater harvesting and treatment plant to ensure a sustainable and low-cost energy solution. The buildings thermal qualities and air tight build help reducing expected running costs to around 30% of other new build properties of this size.

Simon Rispin, SMR Director & Property Owner adds:

It has been two years in the making, but the former Cow Shed has undergone a huge transformation and we’ve now created a great home, with a real mix of traditional elements and modern building techniques. It certainly shows how commercial solutions can be applied in a residential environment to great effect.

The project is one of a number of Small Works commissions SMR has undertaken in regards to ‘one-off’ residential and small scale instructions. Others recent commissions include the Cheltenham Crescent conversion scheme for Oakgate Group, and assisting in the sale of 4-6 North Park Road for Montpellier Group.”


2016 proves to be a great year for SMR Architects!

SMR Architects recently celebrated its 2nd year anniversary and looking back over 2016, we have had a great year!

The SMR workload has strengthened during 2016 in the retail and logistics sectors with the successful delivery of over 500,000 sqft of retail space and over 1 Million sqft of logistics space.  In addition, SMR have further developed their residential workstream, with over 200 plots progressed beyond planning.  We look forward to further involvement with these schemes in 2017.

SMR’s successful growth in workload is down to both repeat work from our existing clients, alongside commissions from over 20 new clients including national retailers, logistics operators and developers, along with smaller traditional developers locally.  We are very proud as a team to be working with so many great clients and look forward to strengthened relationships in 2017.

The team have strengthened their BIM processes and workflows.  We have seen a lot of benefits over the course of the year and our clients are moving towards true BIM Level 2.  As a result, we are now working with a number of contractors offering standalone BIM  Information Manager roles.  This has gained great momentum over the course of 2016 with some great results and next year is looking very promising. We are very keen to work with like minded people in the industry to learn and develop new skills.


We achieved APS Corporate Membership in the field of construction project Health & Safety,  Mathew Smalley has also been accredited APS Incorporated member (IMaPS). SMR were also the winners of the Build Magazine’s 2016 Architecture Awards “Best Retail Architectural Firm – UK”, they also complimented us as Recognised Leaders in Logistics Buildings.

Team SMR have worked hard this year, but its only right that this is balanced out with social time and there has certainly been no shortage of team bonding over the course of the year.  The summer brought our second annual away day to the York Races and more recently we took part in the highly competitive CheeseCubed!  Smaller events saw, Monthly team quizzes, Great SMR Bake-off, World Cup events, ‘Chuck Norris’ inspired Jeans for Genes day and team meals. This year we introduced our First Thursday club, with some great nights including a table tennis and a ‘Killer’ Pool competitions.

Outside of work, Jade completed the Great North Run and Jonny ran the Yorkshire Plusnet Marathon.  Our SMR family also grew when Russ and his wife gave birth to their beautiful daughter Martha.

All in all, 2016 has been a superb year for SMR!  Merry Christmas and a Happy New year to you all and we look forward to working with you in 2017.smr-jpg


Photographic Studio officially opens for John Lewis


The John Lewis TV advert is always the start of Christmas and the talking point in the retail world. Alongside the advert John Lewis obviously have a comprehensive website and hard copy catalogues are available at various times of year – all the content carefully photographed.

Much of the static photography now takes place in a new purpose built facility in West London. Recently completed, the 40,000sqft space comprises a large divisible photo studio (capable of multiple lighting rigs, full house set builds for furniture and dedicated smaller product areas)  and product selection area, along with open plan office space for over 100 partners and set building workshop, post production room and food preparation areas.

With the digital age moving at pace, provision for fashion model changing areas and video content filming including large cat walk runs and voice over recording spaces are also provided.

The office space is one large volume, with open structure, exposed services and roof lights providing natural light to the space. Fixtures and fittings are co-ordinated to provide flexible working spaces, larger team meeting areas and break out spaces. The studio boasts a six metre high, column free, environment for full flexibility.

Richard Stevens – Project Implementation Manager, says

The new Studio facility and adjoining functions are a key step for the future of Content Production within John Lewis. The end result is purpose built, and completely in line with the business aspiration for the coming years. The space offers great natural light, and provides a truly conducive working environment that will enable us to deliver increased capacity, and higher quality imagery for use across all channels. The new space also brings huge improvements into the way we currently work.

SMR worked with Midas Group on the delivery of the space, alongside HPM and Underwood Carpenter for John Lewis Partnership.


dsc_0696wp_20160802_11_46_33_pro 20160802_114912

















img_0419 img_0398 img_0401

Prologis Park – Ryton schemes reach PC utilising BIM Level 2 processes

3d-building-cutaway-isometric-final-bSMR Architects are pleased to announce the recent completion and successful handover of the Asset Information Model, utilising BIM Level 2 Processes on behalf of Prologis and Winvic Construction, for two units as part of Prologis Park – Ryton.

 Looking to gain a greater understanding of the benefits Prologis as a business could gain by adopting BIM Level 2 Processes on future projects, SMR were appointed to the team to set up BIM strategies and workflows including: 

  • BIM Goals and Objectives
  • Roles, responsibilities and design ownership
  • Design Coordination and information authoring
  • Clash Detection and Resolution
  • Information sharing in a Common Data Environment
  • COBie
  • Model federation
  • Testing the benefits of a federated model for use as part of the wider asset information model, through information linking

The success of this project in relation to BIM was achieved through the implementation of a BIM Execution Plan, that formed a working document which was updated and developed at regular intervals to document and track strategies and deliverables.  In addition to this a Model Production and Delivery Table, together with a Master Information Delivery Plan clearly defined who was doing what and when this was to be delivered against the construction programme.  This clearly highlighted that the information to be produced and coordinated was shared amongst the team and this in turn set the foundations for a much more collaborative approach. 

The client formed a key player throughout the project and the use of the model at meetings as well as the drawings, provided further clarification of design coordination and delivery though the build.  In addition to this, the capture of information as part of the wider handover file was structured in a way that could be tracked and signed off, assisting the transition from design and construction into use and operation.

Whilst the project only utilised BIM processes through the construction stage to test ideas, strategies and workflows, the final information that was made available confirmed to the client the benefits that can be achieved from the outset and throughout the life of the project.

James Chapman – Prinicipal Engineering Coordinator at RPS Group said:

We were the Project Engineers and we worked closely with SMR to provide a final coordinated model for the developer.  We modelled the substructure, external service yard and drainage elements, as well as provided key COBie information for the clients maintainable assets. SMR guided us through the process which was of great benefit to our team and has helped us improve and develop our BIM skills and knowledge, this will certainly stand us in good stead for future projects.


Shell works complete and fit out works underway for JLP Customer Delivery Hub

SMR Architects are thrilled to continue working with RG Group as Main Contactor to finalise the fit out of the new 50,000 sqft Customer Delivery Hub at Ashdown Business Park, Uckfield. Our framework client, John Lewis Partnership have confirmed that as well as successfully delivering the base-build at Uckfield; RG Group will also be completing the fit out works which include a two storey office element comprising transport offices, welfare and Partner facilities supporting a significant logistics and delivery unit.


JLP Partners are involved in the decision making for the full finish and the environment we create. As part of the CDH roll out, SMR are ensuring ‘learns’ from previous similar schemes at Solihull and Leeds are incorporated.


SMR are also undertaking a BIM IM role for RG Group ensuring the BIM expectations of JLP are met.


RG Group, on behalf of Evander Properties completed the shell works and fit out access was granted week commencing 25th July 2016 with a planned 12 week construction programme, currently on programme. Come back later to see the finished works on our projects page.


John Lewis Leeds CDH successfully achieves PC

July 2016

Last week saw John Lewis’ first northern, purpose built Customer Delivery Hub successfully completed.  In conjunction with Simons Group, SMR assisted with the design and delivery of this BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rated facility.  The 50,500 sq ft state-of-the-art distribution warehouse forms part of Muse’s flagship 110-acre development in the Leeds City Region Enterprise Zone and is ideally located in close proximity to Junction 45 of the M1.  John Lewis and the project management team were particularly impressed with the outstanding site organisation, management and execution of the project.

The new facility reinforces John Lewis’ commitment to the region and will support stores in York, which opened in April 2014 and Leeds, set to open later this year.  The £2M internal fit-out is based on SMR’s layout which responds to the varying operations planned for the hub, and provides partners with large open plan offices, meeting rooms and catering space, along with training facilities and briefing areas.

Alongside our architectural services, SMR provided Principal Designer Advice and BIM Information Management support to Simons Group.

IMG_8381DSCN1258 DSCN1206DSCN1216

SMR Architects Sponsor the Met Club Lunch!

Flaxby 2016 Parish PresentationJuly 2016

SMR Architects are pleased to be sponsoring The Met Club lunch held at the Majestic Hotel.  The event is an update of the Harrogate Property & Construction market with presentations by Kathryn Daly of Harrogate Borough Council and Nigel Avison of Nidderdale AONB.

SMR are active in the local development and construction industry with several projects in Harrogate and the immediate area with a number of local Developers.  These include; for Oakgate Group, a scheme on Cheltenham Crescent; the Planning Approved Masterplan and new housing & mixed-use scheme in Pannal as well as the proposals for a new business park at Flaxby, both for Forward Investments LLP.

Flaxby Green Park will be a new sustainable business park off the A1 at Junction 47 championing green technologies through innovative and challenging design.    The design proposal seeks to blend high quality business platforms into the natural environment, delivering a sustainable working community where the extensive woodland areas are managed and incorporated into a robust landscape plan to enhance biodiversity and to increase accessibility for the enjoyment of both employees at the park and the wider pubic.

A link to the event is below.



Lidl in Garforth Approved


July 2016

SMR Architects is delighted to have provided Architectural Design in support the successful Planning Approval for a ‘Hybrid Application’ (Full Planning for a new Lidl Store and Outline Planning for the wider Master Plan). The scheme proposed re-development for the Miami Building, on Aberford Road in Garforth.  This is SMR’s first Planning Consent acting on behalf of Lidl UK GmbH.

Plans for the site include a 27,400 sq.ft Food Store, a Family Pub & Restaurant and several medium scale Non-Food Retail Units totalling 39,250 sq.ft, together with associated car parking areas and new pedestrian links.  The scheme incorporates significant new soft landscaped areas acting as buffers, particularly along road frontages.  As Applicants, Lidl is already committed to the site; the Non-Food Retail component is also gaining strong interest, with Heads of Terms being discussed by a number of Operators.

James Hanna, Senior Consultant – Acquisitions, Lidl UK GmbH, said:

“Our exciting plans for Garforth will bring much needed shopping choice to the town and will create important new jobs for the local community. The Lidl store will have our new and improved design for a fantastic shopping experience – something we are sure residents in Garforth will enjoy. We’re keen to press on with our plans as the site is in desperate need of regeneration.”

Mathew Smalley – Director, SMR Architects commented:

“The re-development of this site, will re-energise a former industrial, brown-field site; since the Miami Building was decommissioned it has been largely left vacant.  Our scheme offers an opportunity to enhance this key Garforth location, complementing the existing Town Centre whilst creating a new high-quality, mixed Retail/Leisure development; the range of uses will also create a sustainable development. Successfully securing our first Planning Approval on behalf of Lidl UK GmbH, reflects the latest step in our growing relationship.”

The plans were Approved by Leeds City Council at Committee on 30 June.  The design was positively received by Committee members with several comments regarding the high quality of presentation.  Please revisit our website for future updates on this exciting new development in Leeds.