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Posted: 9 Oct, 2019

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Two projects that Focus Consultants has been involved in have won awards in the Architects Journal Retrofit Awards 2019. The £12m overhaul of Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery in West London by Jestico + Whiles and Julian Harrap Architects took the top prize in the listed building over £5m category. Focus Consultants provided project management support on the exhibition and interpretation at the Grade I-listed manor, which was built between 1800 and 1804 as a country retreat for architect Sir John Soane and his family. It re-opened in March 2019 after a heritage restoration project which included gallery refurbishment, a new restaurant and an event space...

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Posted: 3 Oct, 2019

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Focus Consultants has announced a string of promotions with six members of staff being appointed to new positions. Jessica Bullers, in the Environmental Services team, and James Garner, in the Building Surveying department, both move from senior consultant to associate. Jessica joined Focus 12 years ago, while James has been with the company for more than seven years. Fran Yuill, who joined Focus nine years ago, and who works in the Building Surveying team, has been promoted from consultant to senior consultant. Meanwhile George Jones, Kenny Lampard and Adam Revill have all been promoted from graduate to consultant. George works...

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Posted: 3 Oct, 2019

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Focus Consultants, once again, held their annual Macmillan World’s Biggest Coffee Morning on Monday 23rd September. The Admin team with contributions from other members of staff, planned, organised and delivered a fantastic coffee morning full of delicious, freshly baked cakes and treats for all the staff to enjoy, raising a brilliant £101.65p. As always, we aim to top that again next year! Thank you for all the hard work and the efforts of everyone involved and all those who contributed towards this very worthy cause. Focus Consultants hope to continue supporting the outstanding work carried out by Macmillan Cancer Support...

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Posted: 23 Sep, 2019

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A scheme project managed by Focus Consultants which will breathe new life into a Grade II* listed church has been awarded confirmed funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund for £1.45 million towards its restoration. The project will create a centre for music, art and culture at St Mary’s Church – the oldest building in Walthamstow and the centrepiece of Walthamstow’s ancient village in north east London. In 2017, the church was awarded initial support by The National Lottery Heritage Fund, and after two years of work in which the church obtained all its required permissions, it has been awarded...

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Posted: 16 Sep, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed to help improve the energy efficiency of scores of historic almshouses in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. Focus is undertaking an evaluation of the almshouse estates run by The Richmond Charities to determine how the charity could make energy efficiency improvements to the houses. Nottingham-based Focus’s role includes undertaking measured surveys of a sample of properties across eight of the charity’s almshouses estates, modelling these properties in industry-recognised energy assessment software, and carrying out a feasibility study on potential improvements to the properties. The charity owns and manages 130 almshouses spread over nine...

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Posted: 12 Aug, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed by the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), the Sector Skills Council and Industry Training Board for the construction industry, to evaluate a suite of grant-funded projects worth nearly £3.5 million. There is a recognised shortfall in trained vocational qualification assessors within the construction sector and the industry is facing significant skills gaps and shortages. Grant funding has been awarded by the CITB to thirteen projects across England, Scotland and Wales that address these issues, and which are working to develop the training infrastructure within their sector. Projects that have been funded include the setting up of vocational qualification assessment...

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Posted: 12 Aug, 2019

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Senior building surveyor at Focus Consultants Darren Booker came to the aid of a local National Citizen Service (NCS) community action group by helping them with their project to clean up a small section of woodland in the community area of Bracebridge Heath, near Lincoln. The group of young school leavers assisted by two NCS leaders cleared out the brambles to form a new pathway ready to lay stone chippings and then created a small seated area with a bench and planted this up with flowers and other vegetation. Focus Consultants provided pro-bono services to help with quantifying the material required...

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Posted: 5 Aug, 2019

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Nottingham-based Focus Consultants is celebrating the news that a key heritage project in Nottinghamshire has been awarded a £1.9 million National Lottery Heritage Fund grant. Focus is project managing the Leaves of Southwell project – a scheme to protect, interpret and better present the late 13th Century stone carvings of plants, animals and green men that decorate the Chapter House at Southwell Minster. The carvings are regarded as the finest example of 13th Century naturalistic carving in the UK and have long been a source of inspiration to artists and writers. The project aims to enable more people to visit...

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Posted: 22 Jul, 2019

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An independent assessment and evaluation of the work of the European Bioenergy Research Institute (EBRI) at Aston University – undertaken by Focus Consultants - has forecast the creation of more than 150 jobs and the generation of nearly £20 million gross added value (GVA) for the West Midlands economy over the next two years. Focus Consultants was appointed to work with the team at EBRI to understand the impact of the team’s Business Investment in Research Project on both local SMEs and also the wider West Midlands economy. Funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), the project helped small...

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Posted: 15 Jul, 2019

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Focus was delighted to send representatives to this year’s Association of Independent Museums (AIM) conference. Held at the National Civil War Centre in Newark, Nottinghamshire, which opened as a new museum in 2015, the conference looked to build on recent research by TripAdvisor showing a growing desire for cultural experiences and bookings for cultural attractions rising sharply, with a 45% increase in 2018 compared to 2017. The theme of the conference was how to be a ‘great destination’ and looked to offer delegates some fresh ideas on creative place making, becoming a great destination for the community, understanding audiences and...

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Posted: 10 Jul, 2019

Llys Llywelyn at St Fagans. A recreation of a Royal Court of the Princes of Gwynedd used during the 13th century. - Copy

The team at Focus Consultants is celebrating the news that St Fagans National Museum of History in Wales has won the world’s largest and most prestigious museum prize. Focus project managed an eight-year redevelopment scheme at St Fagans, which was completed last year. The Nottingham-based team provided a range of services including bid work for a Heritage Lottery Fund application, business planning, quantity surveying and project management. Now St Fagans National Museum of History has been awarded the title of Art Fund Museum of the Year 2019 – winning a £100,000 prize. Stephen Deuchar, Art Fund director and chair of...

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Posted: 3 Jul, 2019

Rochdale Town Centre 08

Focus Consultants has been appointed by Rochdale Development Agency to create the business plan for the £16 million redevelopment of the iconic Rochdale Town Hall. The project, which had a successful bid for £8.9 million from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, is now underway, with the development work to inform the Stage 2 submission to the NLHF due in early 2020. Although the stunning neo-gothic town hall was once at the heart of civic life, the town hall is now primarily used for functions. “A key consideration of the business planning work is therefore to carefully consider how the Town...

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Posted: 25 Jun, 2019

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Focus Consultants Associate Mike Lee recently took part in the Great Nottinghamshire Bike Ride, successfully completing the event for the fourth time. Mike chose the 50-mile Friar Tuck route, which headed south out of West Bridgford and meandered through the countryside, taking in places like Ruddington, Keyworth, Cotgrave, Harby, Redmile, Cropwell Bishop and Radcliffe on Trent. He finished four and a half hours later. The Great Nottingham Bike Ride first took place in 1982 with 250 riders and has grown over the years to be a major cycling event for people of all abilities and has raised significant funds for...

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Posted: 25 Jun, 2019

Phase Two CGI_ Trent Basin

Community facilities for Trent Basin are expanding after a new free school was given the go-ahead by the Government. Focus Consultants is part of the team that is delivering hundreds of energy efficient homes at Trent Basin, the sustainable neighbourhood currently being built beside the River Trent in Nottingham. Focus is currently the project manager, employer’s agent and sustainability advisor (HQM) for phases two and three of the scheme, having previously acted in a similar capacity for phase one. It has now been announced that the Department for Education has given permission for Greenwood Academies Trust to open a new...

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Posted: 24 Jun, 2019

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Focus Consultants has recently completed another preliminary ecological appraisal (PEA) for a client looking to develop a site in The Meadows, Nottingham. The survey area, an urban brownfield site now colonised by vegetation, may not be seen by some as requiring a PEA due to what seems like negligible ecological value. However, this is not the case and great care should be taken to fully assess such sites - just as greenfield areas would also be. Formerly known as ‘phase 1 habitat surveys’, preliminary ecological appraisals are widely recognised as the first step in assessing a site’s ecological value. A...

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Posted: 10 Jun, 2019

Phoenix Leicester South Elevation

Focus Consultants is celebrating the news that Phoenix in Leicester is to receive £4 million of National Lottery money invested by Arts Council England towards its expansion and development plans. Phoenix 2020 will create a two-storey extension to the current building in Midland Street in the city’s Cultural Quarter, to include two new cinemas and a better, more accessible digital art gallery with an atrium. The café bar area will be extended, additional toilets added, and improvements made to some existing spaces at the venue. It will also have a green roof terrace. Focus Consultants is the project manager for...

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Posted: 4 Jun, 2019

Chatteris Fire Station

Focus Consultants has been instrumental in a scheme to extend and refurbish one of the busiest on-call fire stations in Cambridgeshire. Focus was the designer and building surveyor, as well as contract administrator and CDM advisor, on the project for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service at Chatteris. It involved transforming one of the service’s older stations into a building suitable for a high-performing modern community fire station. Senior building surveyor, Darren Booker, said: “Focus Consultants has undertaken work for many blue light and public sector organisations, but this was our first project for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service and we...

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Posted: 28 May, 2019

Class 68 DRS at Barrow Hill

Focus Consultants and Maber Architects have been appointed by Chesterfield Borough Council to explore the feasibility of establishing a Rail Innovation Centre at Barrow Hill, Chesterfield. The proposals for the Centre will enhance an already thriving centre of railway maintenance and engineering at Barrow Hill Engine Shed. In November 2018, Spanish Train Builder, Talgo announced that it planned to develop an Innovation Centre at Chesterfield as a focus from which the company’s ‘All Britain’ strategy will be developed. Now Focus Consultants and Maber have been appointed by Chesterfield Borough Council to investigate the feasibility and opportunities offered through the development...

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Posted: 16 May, 2019

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Focus Consultants has staged a string of fund-raising activities to support Stonebridge City Farm in Nottingham, after the community charity launched an urgent appeal in January to raise £30,000 to keep the farm going through the winter months. Staff at Nottingham-based Focus came up with some fun Easter activities to raise much-needed cash, which was topped up by the partners at the firm, Focus has handed over a cheque for more than £270. Stonebridge City Farm is a community charity which has been an important part of Nottingham life for the past 40 years and is described as a small...

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Posted: 15 May, 2019

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Liam Reidy and Amar Toor are taking a break from their studies at the University of Nottingham to join Focus Consultants as part of the Nottingham Internship Scheme. The students are undertaking a two-week placement amongst Focus’ experts in the art of strategy, funding, project development and delivery. Focus is offering the undergraduate spring internships for the first time, giving local students the chance to gain hands-on experience of working in pairs on a short-term market research project. The interns follow a long line of young people who have enjoyed work experience at Focus, who once again show a willingness...

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Posted: 30 Apr, 2019

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Two of Focus Consultants’ museum clients have been named as finalists for this year’s Art Fund Museum of the Year, the world’s largest and most prestigious museum prize. Focus project managed an eight-year redevelopment scheme at St Fagans National Museum of History in Wales, which was completed last year. The firm provided a range of services including bid work for a Heritage Lottery Fund application, business planning, quantity surveying and project management. In addition, Focus has been undertaking project management and quantity surveying roles at the V&A Dundee for their programme of temporary exhibitions, the latest of which, Videogames, opened...

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Posted: 29 Apr, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed by South Holland District Council to carry out a multi-disciplinary consultancy role including employer’s agent, principal designer, clerk of works, and CDM advisor on a Lincolnshire housing development. The project consists of the demolition of ten existing bungalows and the development of 34 units comprising a mixture of one, two and three-bedroom properties, including hardstandings and landscaping areas, at a site at Small Drove, Weston, near Spalding. The project which is partially funded by Homes England, offers a mixture of affordable rent and shared ownership houses and bungalows. It is due to be completed in...

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Posted: 26 Apr, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed by South Holland District Council to carry out Quality Inspections of three Section 106 sites being developed by Ashwood Homes Ltd. The sites, which are based in Moulton, Cowbit and Donington in Lincolnshire are due to be completed throughout 2019 and 2020. South Holland District Council will take ownership of 18 units across the sites out of the total 174 being built. These will be for affordable rent and shared ownership. Focus will also be carrying out snagging and de-snagging inspections to ensure the homes are to a good quality. Representatives from Focus, which is...

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Posted: 24 Apr, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed to develop a new business plan for The Wilson Art Gallery & Museum in Cheltenham. The company joins leading heritage and conservation specialist Purcell and interpretation experts Image Makers to draw up a feasibility study for the art gallery and museum to unify its gallery buildings and maximise the use of the triple-fronted museum. Focus Consultants is creating the business plan for the development project, which aims to provide a better experience for visitors, engage more with the community, develop its audience base and increase support. The Wilson has an important part to play in...

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Posted: 12 Apr, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed as quantity surveyors on a £5.5m project to restore Coventry’s Grade II* listed Drapers’ Hall in time for the city being UK City of Culture in 2021. The building in the heart of the Cathedral Quarter will be used as a centre for educating young musicians from Coventry schools and for the performance of professional classical music. The project is being led by Historic Coventry Trust and managed by The Prince’s Foundation. The development of Drapers' Hall represents one of The Prince’s Foundation’s 7 for 70 projects announced in 2018 to coincide with The Prince of Wales’s 70th birthday. The Prince’s Foundation launched...

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Posted: 2 Apr, 2019

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Focus Consultants is delighted that the Confetti Digital Media Hub in Nottingham has been named as the Sustainable Development of the Year winner at the East Midlands Bricks Awards. Focus Consultants was the BREEAM Assessor and the BREEAM Accredited Professional for the scheme, providing the design team with expert advice on built environment sustainability, environmental design and environmental assessment. Built by Stepnell for Nottingham Trent University at NTU’s Creative Quarter Campus, the £9.1 million hub is one of the city’s most environmentally sustainable buildings. Senior sustainability surveyor at Focus Consultants Jessica Bullers said: “The Digital Media Hub, which connects the...

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Posted: 28 Mar, 2019

Phase Two CGI_ Trent Basin

Sustainability experts at Focus Consultants have welcomed Nottingham’s decision to aim to become the first carbon neutral city in the UK by 2028. Focus, has provided professional support and expertise on sustainability issues on many new-build projects in Nottingham, including the recently opened five-storey building at the Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies at Nottingham Trent University’s Creative Quarter Campus and the main site of the Confetti Institute. Focus is also part of the team that is delivering 250 energy efficient homes at Trent Basin, which has set the bar for community energy schemes with the installation of Europe’s largest community...

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Posted: 21 Mar, 2019

We’re delighted to hear that several museum schemes involving Focus Consultants have been shortlisted in the Museums and Heritage Awards 2019. The D-Day Story in Portsmouth has been named as a finalist in the Permanent Exhibition of the Year category and also, one of its volunteers, John Jenkins, has been selected for the shortlist in the Volunteer of the Year Award (individual). Focus was the project manager, quantity surveyor, business planner and employer’s agent for the £5m revamp at the museum, completed last year. Shortlisted in the Innovation of the Year Award is the Museum ExplorAR augmented reality experience at...

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Posted: 14 Mar, 2019

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Focus Consultants are undertaking multiple roles at a student accommodation scheme being built on the site of the former Dagfa School in Beeston, Nottingham. The former independent school in Broadgate, which was based round the 18th Century house, closed in 2016 and is being developed by Cassidy Group Nottingham Ltd. The scheme started on site last Summer and is set to complete on schedule in August ready for the start of the 2019 academic year. Focus Consultants are acting as quantity surveyor and employer’s agent on the project to create three new student accommodation blocks which will provide 217 student...

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Posted: 27 Feb, 2019

Student accommodation - Brackenhurst Campus2

Focus Consultants has been appointed to support Nottingham Trent University on some of its latest developments at the university’s rural Brackenhurst Campus. As well as building a new flagship reception and environment centre, which will act as the new ‘heart of the campus’, construction has also started on new accommodation blocks, augmenting the campus’s on-site residential capacity. Focus has been appointed as the BREEAM Assessor and the BREEAM Accredited Professional, providing the design and construction teams of the accommodation facilities with expert advice on built environment sustainability, environmental design and environmental assessment. In line with the University’s policy for new build...

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Posted: 26 Feb, 2019

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Focus Consultants is celebrating the news that two projects it was involved in have been shortlisted in the East Midlands RICS Awards 2019. The University of Northampton Engine Shed has been named as a finalist in the Building Conservation category, while the Confetti Institute of Creative Technologies at Nottingham Trent University’s Creative Quarter Campus and the main site of the Confetti Institute has been shortlisted for the Regeneration Award. Funding experts at Focus Consultants were involved in supporting the stage 1 and stage 2 Heritage Enterprise bids for the development at the University of Northampton Engine Shed, and members of...

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Posted: 8 Feb, 2019

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Focus Consultants has been appointed to project manage the transformation of a Cambridgeshire museum after supporting the museum’s successful bid for a National Lottery grant. Focus provided Ely Museum with project management and business planning support during the development phase, which led to the recent news that the museum had been awarded a £1.66 million National Lottery grant. Now the Nottingham-based office has been retained to provide project management services for the delivery stage of the Unlocking the Potential of the Old Gaol: Ely Museum Redevelopment Project. Focus associate Mike Lee said: “This is a fascinating project at Ely Museum...

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Posted: 24 Jan, 2019

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Focus Consultants is celebrating the news that Portsmouth’s D-Day Story has been nominated for the European Museum of the Year Award (EMYA) 2019. Focus was the project manager, quantity surveyor, business planner, and employer’s agent for a £5m revamp at the museum which was completed last year ahead of the 75th anniversary of the Normandy landings in 2019. Work included conserving items such as its 83m-long (272ft) Overlord Embroidery, which tells the story of D-Day in 34 hand-stitched panels, and the creation of three new exhibition galleries, a café and a shop. Now it has been announced that 40 museums...

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Posted: 17 Jan, 2019

Sophie - Stegosaurus - Earth Hall

Following commissions for the Natural History Museum that have included work to the Conservation Centre, and the Whales: Beneath the Surface Exhibition, Focus is pleased to announce our success in securing an appointment to provide both Quantity Surveying and Principal Designer Services for their forthcoming project The Earth Galleries Ground Floor.

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Posted: 8 Jan, 2019

Harris 2017 - Copy

Ambitious plans for a Grade I-listed museum, art gallery and library redevelopment scheme – project managed by Focus Consultants – have received initial National Lottery support. Re-Imagining the Harris project at the Harris Museum, Art Gallery and Library in Preston, Lancashire, has been awarded development funding of £180,900 by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). This will help Preston City Council and Lancashire County Council to progress their plans to apply for a full National Lottery grant in 2020. Focus partner Steven Fletcher said: “It’s great to hear that the Re-Imagining the Harris project has been successful in its bid for...

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Posted: 18 Dec, 2018

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A Grade I Listed Jacobean manor house will close in the New Year for a refurbishment after securing a £3,734,200 National Lottery grant. Focus Consultants provided business planning and quantity surveying services for Boston Manor House in Brentford as part of the early stages of the redevelopment plans. The heritage restoration project entitled Boston Manor: Engaging with the 21st Century aims to fully restore the manor house, currently on the ‘Heritage at Risk’ Register, to its former glory, while equipping it to meet the needs of the modern day. The work will include structural and building repairs and the installation of...

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Posted: 13 Dec, 2018

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A £1.4m programme of fire safety improvement work in which Focus Consultants undertook the building surveying, design and contract administrator responsibilities has been completed on a ward at Lincoln County Hospital. The third floor Branston Ward (gynaecology) at Lincoln County Hospital has just undergone a major refurbishment, as part of United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust’s (ULHT) ongoing fire safety upgrades. The 18-bed ward has benefited from new ceilings, flooring and patient bathrooms, in addition to a full set of new fire doors and new lighting throughout. The third-floor revamp is part of an extensive programme of work at Lincoln to...

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Posted: 29 Nov, 2018

East Coast Hub 4

Focus Consultants has been appointed to deliver sustainability services for a new East Coast Hub for the global leader in offshore wind, Ørsted, which is currently building the biggest offshore wind farms in the world. Currently in construction on the Royal Docks at Grimsby, Lincolnshire, the building will represent a state-of-the-art operations and maintenance hub to support both the construction and operation of Ørsted’s offshore wind farms, from which they currently operate more than 1.2 gigawatts (GW) of capacity with a further 2.6GW under construction. “The construction, operation and maintenance of such a large off-shore wind capacity necessarily requires a...

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Posted: 12 Nov, 2018

Focus Nottingham Projects

Having played a key role in the definition, creation and funding of the project for the redevelopment of Nottingham Castle, Focus Consultants is very pleased to see work now starting on site to transform the castle into a world-class visitor destination. Focus was the lead consultant working on the successful bid which secured a First Round Pass of almost £13m from the Heritage Lottery Fund – providing project management, bid writing, business planning and cost advice services to develop the successful bid. Partner at Focus Consultants, Steven Fletcher, said: “Focus was proud to be involved in helping to develop this...

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Posted: 12 Nov, 2018

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An eight-year redevelopment at St Fagans National Museum of History, project managed by Focus Consultants, has successfully completed and been topped with a highly commended accolade at the RICS 2018 Grand Final Awards. Focus first began working with the Welsh museum in 2010 when Focus was appointed for the preparation of a Heritage Lottery Fund bid. The bid was successful – securing £11.5m in HLF grant funding for the museum on the outskirts of Cardiff.  At the time, in 2012, it was the largest HLF grant ever awarded in Wales. Focus was subsequently retained to provide business planning, quantity surveying...

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Posted: 26 Sep, 2018

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Great to see Trent Basin in Nottingham named as a finalist in three different award categories at the East Midlands Property Dinner Awards 2018. Focus Consultants is project manager, employer’s agent and sustainability advisor (HQM) for phase two of the scheme, having previously acted in a similar capacity for phase one. The Blueprint development – which when completed will have created 500 low energy homes as part of the 250-acre Waterside Regeneration area in Nottingham beside the River Trent – has been shortlisted in the Design Excellence, Sustainable Development of the Year, and Regeneration and Restoration Project of the Year...

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Posted: 24 Sep, 2018

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Focus Consultants and architects Guy Taylor Associates have been appointed to draw up ideas to improve the foreshore of one of the UK’s popular seaside towns. Skegness has a long tradition as a holiday resort, not least as the first location for the Butlins chain, built in 1936. Now the seafront is looking forward to improvements which aim to boost Skegness’s appeal as an all year-round visitor destination, thanks to concepts being drawn up by economic development consultants at Focus Consultants and heritage architects, Guy Taylor Associates. In late 2017, areas of Skegness foreshore were awarded 'Registered Park and Garden...

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Posted: 10 Sep, 2018

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Focus Consultants are proud to be an approved supplier on the ESPO National Framework 664-17 and 2664-18 for consultancy services. Check out ESPO’S Promotional Flyer to illustrate the benefits of using an ESPO Framework. Click Here

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Posted: 6 Sep, 2018

20180504_131254 work completed by Focus Consultants on Pathfinder House for Huntingdonshire District Council

Focus Consultants has completed two key contracts for Huntingdonshire District Council. Focus project managed the recent refurbishment and improvements of the swimming pool and changing village at One Leisure St Neots. Focus was also contract administrator, principal designer and CDM advisor for the £260,000, nine-week scheme at the leisure centre. In addition, Focus Consultants has recently completed the project management of a £250,000 redevelopment scheme for the council to create a one-stop-shop Customer Service Centre at Pathfinder House, Huntingdon. Also acting as contract administrator, principal designer and CDM advisor, Focus oversaw the fast-track refurbishment and alterations project which was split...