Luke Hughes and Company, recent news

Benjamin Franklin College dedicated by Yale University

Benjamin Franklin College dedicated by Yale University

October 2017

On Friday 6 October 2017, Yale University dedicated Benjamin Franklin College, one of two new residential colleges to open at Yale in fifty years. 

Designed in the Collegiate Gothic style by Robert A.M. Stern Architects, we designed and manufactured fitting dining hall furniture to seat 300. This included our Wykeham chairs and bespoke dining tables with removable tops, in solid oak. 

We look forward to completing more upcoming projects with Yale, including the refurbishment of the Manuscripts and Archives Room at the Sterling Memorial Library.

Learn more about our past international projects for education

Benjamin Franklin College, Yale University

Benjamin Franklin College, Yale University


Keystone Academy High School Library Beijing

Luke Hughes to speak at Keystone Academy Dedication Ceremony

October 2017

In early 2017, we completed work on the new high school library at Keystone Academy, Beijing.

On 15 October 2017, Company Founder Luke Hughes will speak at the official dedication ceremony about the design process, from the fascinating conceptual stages through to production and installation. He will be joined by Kacy Song, Director of Libraries. 

Keystone Academy on the library design:

‘The new library encapsulates the very spirit of the institution it represents through its blend of Eastern and Western aesthetics and creates a tangible learning environment and academic experience. The high quality and adaptable furniture help transform the space into a center conducive to gathering, learning, and growth.’

From the archives ... the Covent Garden workshop

June 2017

In the early days of Luke Hughes, the Covent Garden workshop was so small that larger pieces of furniture had to be assembled in the back-streets outside. 

Here is one of a set of circular benches being made in 1987 for a shopping centre in Harrow, London (and they’re still there, thirty years later!). Pictured above are craftsmen Joss Skottowe (left) and Mark Adams (kneeling) and the team’s able administrator, Christian Jebb (behind).

The images come from the company’s vast archive of photos and drawings accumulated over the last four decades, only now the subject of a proper archive retrieval exercise.

Yale University Sterling Memorial Library

Yale projects

June 2017

Luke Hughes is working on two new projects for Yale University, following the completion of the public area seating at Edward P. Evans Hall, Yale School of Management (working with Foster + Partners), furniture for the three dining halls at Yale-NUS College, Singapore (with PCP Architects) and furniture for Yale's Sterling Memorial Library (with Apicella + Bunton).

For the first project, we have designed new tables and chairs for a new Yale College with Robert Stern Architects, scheduled to open autumn 2017. 

The second project is the refurbishment of the Manuscripts and Archives Room at the Sterling Memorial Library, working again with the spirited design team at Apicella + Bunton. This will be completed at the end of 2017.

Yale University is well-known for its architectural heritage (including the famous 1960s Beinecke Library and other impressive buildings by Louis Kahn, Eero Saarinen, James Gamble Rogers, Skidmore Owings & Merrill, as well as the British architects, Norman Foster and Michael Hopkins).

Yale Museum also has one of the most impressive collections of furniture too - the American Decorative Arts Furniture Study - a working library of more than 1,100 of furniture and wooden objects from 17th-21st century.

Savoy Court Count Peter

A new home

June 2017

We have recently moved into our new home at 7 Savoy Court, right next to The Savoy Hotel and above Simpson's-in-the-Strand. 

Vacating our original studio and workshop on Drury Lane, after 36 years, has been an emotional wrench (we have probably been there far longer than any other furniture maker, even than Thomas Chippendale*) but now the company has so much international focus, we need larger premises.

Savoy Court has been the perfect fit. We moved in this May, and aim to have a new showroom area ready in time for an official opening in Autumn 2017.

Some interesting facts about our new location:

• Our neighbour, The Savoy Hotel, was built by Richard D’Oyly Carte in the 1880s (with profits from his productions of Gilbert and Sullivan opera productions) and was the first luxury London hotel. The site was initially the home of Count Peter of Savoy who built the original Savoy palace in 1263, and it is his gilded-bronze statue (sculpted by Frank Lynn-Jenkins in 1904 and mounted on the Art Deco canopy in 1929) that stands directly outside our windows (pictured).

• Savoy Court is the only named street in the UK where vehicles are required to drive on the right, a tradition that dates back to the days of the hackney carriage when a cab driver would reach his arm out of the driver’s door window to open the passenger’s door (which opened backwards and had the handle at the front) without having to get down from the cab.

*When he flourished, there were nearly 200 cabinet-making workshops within Covent Garden, within half a mile of here. He moved to his Covent Garden premises in Conduit Court, off Long Acre, in 1749 and to 60-62 St Martin’s Lane, in 1754. He was born in 1718, died in 1779. Next year will be his tercentenary of his birth.


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October 2017

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