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vanilla factory + refresh

warehouses converted into offices, retail and leisure spaces

shedkm sensitively retained the character and features of this regenerated Victorian warehouse and married them with smart 21st century architecture.

The Vanilla Factory is a mixed-use scheme in the heart of the ‘Ropewalks’ conservation area providing lively commercial space at ground floor and office space at first, second, third and fourth floors.

The scheme, sitting adjacent to the existing 18th Century warehouses of the conservation area, infills a gap within the urban fabric and brings together order and rationale to a collection of notable and important buildings previously split and disparate.

Offices are delivered in a variety of forms, from refurbishment of the former warehouses to new clear, open-plan spaces within new-build floorplates, set behind an expressed steel frame.

At second and third floors the scheme expands into the adjacent ‘Holmes’ and ‘Palace’ buildings providing further office space at varying sizes.

Within Holmes, an existing ‘vanilla essence’ warehouse and key building within the conservation area, the principle was to strip the existing back to the primary structure. The fit out is simple and clean allowing the original fabric of the building, masonry, cast iron and timber to be expressed within the units.


Urban Splash





Contract value:

£1.9 million




Won: 4 Awards, including 2008 LAS Award

new breakout, hot-desk and meeting areas and improved kitchen and social facilities for tenants to share

refresh to the building’s circulation including entrance hallway and visitor arrival


staggered pendants