The Financial Times; unique pieces draw in special buyers

The Financial Times; unique pieces draw in special buyers

December 2007

The search for originality in an age of retail homogeneity is creating a renaissance for British fine craftsmanship as discerning buyers seek imagination and insight in their purchases in preference to the glib and predictable. William MacNamara writes in the Financial Times about a new golden age for original craft hardly seen since the 19th century with commentary by Luke Hughes and other makers of fine and collectible craft items.

Milbank Tweed Hadley McCloy LLP International Law Firm.

Milbank Tweed Hadley McCloy LLP International Law Firm.

November 2007

Luke Hughes & Company designed and supplied a suite of burr walnut veneer reconfigurable tables for the American law firm’s London offices.

Our new ‘slab’ ‘Capital’ table formed the basis for these table sets. With two large conference sized rooms to furnish, the challenge was to create cable managed conferencing settings that could be reconfigured in minutes into double meeting rooms divided by a sliding wall partition. Our table solution was simple but effective; wheeled, folding Wilkahn Confair table bases with Luke Hughes & Company table tops were used as the ‘link’ between the two static ‘Capital’ tables.

Anthony Russell, Ecclesiastical Consultant, writes for ‘Church Building’ Magazine

Anthony Russell, Ecclesiastical Consultant, writes for ‘Church Building’ Magazine

October 2007

Anthony makes the clear case for bench pews in churches. The humble bench is experiencing a renaissance as churchmen wake up to the fact that they may have some of the best spaces in Britain hidden beneath their heavy victorian pews. The question is being asked. Why use the leaky old village hall when you could have a splendid 15th century church, often the finest building for miles around, as a community space?

It seems that the static victorian pew may have been instrumental in the inexorable decline in use of church space as communities find their format less and less alluring. Bring in light, portable stacking benches and suddenly church spaces are opened up to reveal splendidly adaptable areas.

Of course when we talk of benches we don’t mean the humble old school bench, splinters included. The modern pew bench is a fine hardwood item designed for grannies and children to be comfortable on and is made to last at least as long as the oppressive pews that they replace. The right benches are timeless by virtue of their quality of manufacture and material of construction; properly designed and made benches seem equally at home in settings as diverse as 15th century cathedrals and modern new-build churches - almost as if they should have always been there.

Full article in ‘Church Building’ magazine

Unilever; £70 million London HQ upgrade

Unilever; £70 million London HQ upgrade

September 2007

LHCL is part of something very special

Unilever House, the iconic Grade II listed building on Victoria Embankment has undergone a 2 year refit that involved the complete gutting of the outdated interior office structure and the retention of the magnificent 1920’s James Lomax-Simpson facade. The new build by Architects Kohn Pederson Fox and contractor Bovis includes a splendid atrium and flying galleries that create a collaborative office environment more suitable for contemporary work practices. Luke Hughes & Company provided boardroom and conference furniture including a unique reconfigurable executive dining table for the Chairman’s suite. In addition LHCL supplied furniture for meeting rooms, reception areas and conferencing areas with static glass-topped tables, cable managed ‘flip-top’ tables, circular audio visual conferencing tables, credenzas and occasional tables. The total value of our supply was £750,000

What do Samba, the Notting Hill Carnival and Heather Bridge have in common?

What do Samba, the Notting Hill Carnival and Heather Bridge have in common?

August 2007

Heather joined the LHCL sales team earlier this year and came across as nice quiet girl with interests in furniture, embroidery and needlework. We discovered later that Heather has a slightly more flamboyant side to her character. She is an official member of Paraíso School of Samba which is the only organisation in the UK to be artistically directed by artists who grew up in the Rio de Janeiro samba community. The school closely follows the authentic Brazilian School of Samba’s structure and objectives, including all its main cultural elements.

“Having a love for dancing and a need to get fit, I decided to take up Samba dancing. Two and a half years later and with two Notting Hill Carnivals under my belt I have enjoyed every moment”.

Luke Hughes & Company join design team for new UK Supreme Court

Luke Hughes & Company join design team for new UK Supreme Court

July 2007

Luke Hughes & Co Ltd have joined the design team, led by architects Feilden & Mawson, to convert the Middlessex Guildhall on Parliament Square into the new UK Supreme Court. The scheme was granted listed building consent in September 2006. New furniture will include that for a new library, courtrooms, and the justices’s private rooms. Other practices on the design team include:

- Speirs & Major (lighting designer)
- CMS Design Associates (landscape)
- Modus Operandi (art strategy)
- Andrew Moor Associates (glass)
- Space Sound Design (acoustics)

Luke Hughes began making furniture in Covent Garden 26 years ago, and the practice was incorporated in 1986. Since then Luke Hughes and Company Ltd have specialised in designing and procuring purpose-made furniture for sensitive architectural settings, both old and new. These have included more than fifty Oxbridge institutions, seven major cathedrals, five Royal Palaces and five British embassies abroad. It has also involved working closely alongside most of the major significant architectural practices in London,

Over the last ten years we have been involved with new library furniture for the new building or refurbishing of libraries at:

- Atlantic College
- Bedford School
- Downing College Cambridge
- Harrow School
- Giggleswick School
- Keble College Oxford
- London Library
- Pembroke College Cambridge
- Peterhouse Cambridge
- St Hugh’s College, Oxford
- University Library Cambridge
- Wolfson College Cambridge.

Work for dedicated Law Libraries includes that for:

- Christ Church Law Library Oxford
- College of Law Library London
- Institute of Criminology Library Cambridge
- Supreme Court Library, Edinburgh

The design briefs for these projects have usually sought a design-life anywhere between 50-150 years, and this presents no difficulties.

What we can bring to this project:

- Our experience of libraries in general and law libraries in particular
- Knowledge of the building and its significance, and of how judges work
- Knowledge needed to refine the brief, with both client and architect
- Detailed development of the architect’s design concept
- Samples, models and 3D presentations
- Specialist knowledge about incorporating power, data and lighting
- Tight budget control and value-engineering as the project develops
- Full working drawings
- Interviewing and selection of suitable sub-contractors
- A network of competitive specialist component suppliers around the UK
- Tender examination and assessment of value
- Quality control during production
- Future back-up after completion
- Geographical proximity to the rest of the design team, and the project.

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