Planning Approval for Section 75 School by Craig Heap

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We are pleased to receive planning approval for a new build primary school for BAE Systems at Dargavel Village.

The 2 stream primary school is a Section 75 obligation as part of BAE’s masterplan for transforming the former Royal Ordnance Factory site into a thriving community with around 4000 homes.  

Working closely with BAE Systems as developer and CASS Associates as Masterplanners and Planning consultants, our role initially required us to develop the school brief to satisfy the Section 75 agreement and meet education planning legislation.  A series of design workshops with Renfrewshire Council allowed the design concept to be refined to satisfy the needs of both BAE Systems, as developer, and Renfrewshire Council, as end user.

The school is due to be handed over to Renfrewshire Council in 2021.

Stadium of the Year: Meet the Juror – Robert Kennedy by Craig Heap


Robert Kennedy has been invited as one of three jurors to evaluate the Stadium of the Year vote presented by

Working on his first stadium project in 1992, Murrayfield Stadium, Edinburgh, for the Scottish Rugby Union, Robert has constructed almost 500,000 seats in the UK and abroad including the RICOH Arena in Coventry, King Power Stadium in Leicester and the aforementioned Murrayfield Stadium, which at 67,500 capacity is the largest for the practice so far.

The market has changed and the practice has been successful overseas with the completion of the Ahmedabad Arena in Gujarat, India and the design of a soccer tournament hub in New Jersey, USA.

This international market will be a focus in the coming years whilst still servicing work close to home, as proven by redevelopment of the iconic Meadowbank in Edinburgh. news item

Milestone for Paisley Town Hall Redevelopment by Craig Heap

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Our work to transform Paisley Town Hall into one of the West of Scotland’s landmark entertainment venues has reached a significant milestone with the submission of a Planning Application and Listed Building Consent.

We have worked closely with the Client team at Renfrewshire Council and Renfrewshire Leisure to embrace their aspirations and develop designs to breath new life into the fantastic A-Listed Victorian Town Hall.  

Some of the key features include increased capacity in the main hall, new cafe bar, new dance studio, new venue-within-a-venue,  significant improvements to audience experience and full replacement of mechanical and electrical equipment.

The work to the Town Hall is part of Renfrewshire Council’s exciting regeneration programme that seeks to utilise the fantastic built heritage as a catalyst to increase footfall back to the high street and discover all Paisley has to offer.

The project is being delivered through hub West Scotland.

Renfrewshire Council press release

Ten things the revamp means to you

Kent Road Planning Approval by Craig Heap

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We were delighted to hear Planning permission has been granted by GCC Planning Committee for a proposed residential development offering 20 units for private sale on a tight urban site in Kent Road adjacent to Charing Cross for our client, Kelvin Properties.

Following lengthy pre-application discussions with GCC’s planning department on matters such as massing and scale, Holmes Miller were able to secure the approval with a reduced parking provision for developments outwith the City Centre.

The original proposal was to provide 4 private vehicle parking spaces, however following concerns raised by Councillors the layout was amended to increase this provision to 6. The Councillors on the planning committee heard that although council parking policy states that, outwith the City Centre, there should be one allocated space per dwelling unit for residents and an additional 0.25 unallocated space per dwelling for visitors, it “recognises that there may be circumstances where this level of provision is not possible or undesirable.”

In the case of our development, it was deemed by GCC that the policy could be relaxed as it was justified against criteria including place-making, townscape and design requirements, house size and type and due to the fact the site has a high accessibility to public transport.

Let the games begin....... Rugby League World Cup 2021 by Ryan Holmes

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Five Holmes Miller designed stadiums have been chosen today to be hosts for the Rugby League World Cup England 2021.

  • Stadium for West Cumbria in Workington will host 3 men’s group games.

  • York Community Stadium will host a women’s group game and both women’s semi-finals.

  • Ricoh Arena in Coventry will host 1 men’s group game.

  • KCOM stadium in Hull will host 1 men’s group game and 1 men’s quarter final.

  • Riverside Stadium in Middlesbrough will host 1 men’s group game.

York Stadium is currently under construction while Stadium for West Cumbria has just been submitted for planning.  This is great news for Allerdale Borough Council and City of York Council for having the vision to develop these venues.

York Community Stadium is due to open in late 2019, while the Stadium for West Cumbria is due to open in the spring of 2021.

Both venues will provide community and sporting legacy well beyond the World Cup.

..99 and 100 by Craig Heap

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Good news to start the New Year with the pupils from Ladyloan Primary School and Muirfield Primary School in Arbroath moving into their new schools on 8 January 2019.

These openings represent a significant milestone as they are the 99th and 100th new schools to be built in Scotland’s £1.8 billion Schools for the Future Programme, managed by the Scottish Futures Trust. A fantastic effort by everyone involved with the continuing development of School facilities in Scotland.

These schools for Angus Council were delivered by Robertson Construction through hub East Central Scotland.

Link to Angus Council news item

Meadowbank Sports Centre by Craig Heap

We are excited to share a video showcasing our design for the new Meadowbank Sports Centre for the City of Edinburgh Council.

The new stadium replaces the existing Meadowbank complex, originally constructed in 1968. It retains the existing running track which is an important link to historic events including the Commonwealth Games of 1970 and 1986 and to the many significant moments in the history of Scottish Athletics.

The design comprises an extensive range of internal and external sports facilities including indoor athletics hall, multi-use sports halls, fitness suite and studios, halls for Gymnastics & Martial Arts, Squash Courts and external athletics track, throws area, two synthetic pitches and spectator stand.

Graham Construction has been appointed as contractor by the City of Edinburgh Council for the construction of Meadowbank Sports Centre. Holmes Miller are Architects, working with Graham Construction, alongside Aecom and RSP to deliver this exciting project.

Works are due to start in January 2019, with the new facility scheduled to open in 2020.

13 Schools of 2018 by Craig Heap

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2018 has been an incredibly busy and unprecedented year for our Education team with the successful handover of 13 school facilities.  Significantly, this included our first venture into the education sector south of the border with the delivery of an ASN School in Stevenage.

We are passionate about the design and delivery of the learning estate and have very much enjoyed this collaborative journey with our clients, key stakeholders, fellow consultants and contractors to reach this significant milestone in 2018.

Some of the highlights :

  • 13 projects handed over with construction value of £87 million.

    • 10 x Primary Schools

    • 1 x ASN School

    • 1 x All Through School

    • 1 x Early Years Centre

  • 10 different local authorities

  • 5 different procurement routes (hub / LHC framework / Local Authority framework / Scape / D&B tender)

  • 7 different main contractors

We are looking forward to a well deserved Christmas holiday and wish you a healthy and prosperous 2019.

North East Campus, Dundee by Craig Heap

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Conceived in 2015, and opened to pupils in August 2018, North East Campus in the Whitfield area of Dundee rethinks primary school provision in the area, offering an innovative and dynamic learning environment with pupil’s wellbeing at its core. The brief, to combine three existing primary schools, and two existing nursery schools within a new, state-of-the-art facility, required an architectural approach that addressed a number of key issues;

How can a building of over 7,000m2 remain approachable, legible and navigable for pupils as young as 2 years old?

How can the architectural approach assist and encourage positive transitions between year group stages?

How can this multi faith facility maintain open plan, collaborative learning at its heart, whilst recognising the need for distinct school identity?

Recognising the differing needs and vulnerabilities of children from pre-school through to graduation to secondary school, the design for NE Campus seeks to respond by addressing the aspects that relate to a pupils ‘day at the school’. On approach, this three storey building may seem dominant on the hillscape to the North of the City, however at ground level, pupils are presented with considered and appropriate entrance points. Nursery pupils are guided through a landscaped pre-school garden, to a single storey canopied entrance, with playful articulation and open aspects to the playroom and nurture spaces beyond. Infant pupils are catered for through individual classroom entrances at ground level, providing each teaching space with a ‘front lawn’ on approach, and mitigating any fear of crowding issues or intimidation in vertical circulation stairwells. For senior pupils, the grandeur of the school’s principal entrances reinforce their maturity within the establishment and allow them to embrace their pending graduation to secondary school by accessing the school and its upper floor on the diagonal axis that dissects the building floor plan.

Internally, the building fosters transition by carefully aligning and considering relationships between year groups, offering the opportunity for social interaction in suitably scaled environments. Whilst the building’s central atrium reaches a height of 16 metres, the space is crafted to create intimate courtyard settings, intersected by a dynamic learning ‘bridge’. The smallest of the courtyards links the Early Years Centre with the infant classrooms, providing a library, group work and craft area for pupils to meet and explore. Glass screens link both the playroom and infant classrooms with this open plan area, allowing pre-school children the opportunity to identify and acclimatise to their next step, whilst infant pupils understand the journey they have taken in their first step through academia.

Classroom spaces and their connection to circulation and flexible learning remains intimate and protected at infant level, with limited areas of ‘double height’ volume, and the ability to shelter from the larger atrium and social spaces within the school. This arrangement provides the character of a newly formed infant school, where every facility is locally available, and the year groups can customise their environment and setting for learning. For junior and senior pupils however, the school opens up to form a dynamic and uplifting educational agora, with cascading floors addressing the central atrium, learning bridge and terraced group work areas. Pupils will graduate upwards through the building as they progress through year groups, easily mapping their journey and allowing the ability to reflect on achievements. The school eschews the traditional dining and assembly hall, and instead offers a tiered performance and social area, that allows for social gathering and dining, whilst forming the optimum space for science practical teaching, setting for art classes, and launch point for cross curricular engagement.

The further consideration of the NE Campus design is the integration of both non-denominational and Roman Catholic school communities under a single roof, offering the ability to maintain school identity whilst embracing the opportunity for wider school collaboration. As demonstrated at the recent opening event at the campus, the design and layout of the building is encouraging continual dialogue between the associated senior management and teaching staff of each school, embracing every opportunity for learning as a collective, and celebrating not only the achievements of each individual school, but the outlook of the joint campus as a whole.     

North East campus is a truly ambitious project, which offers the optimum environment for pupils and for delivery of the curriculum. Moreover, this project clearly demonstrates that careful design at pupil level, can create the most intimate of learning spaces, within one of the largest primary schools in Scotland.  

Glasgow Studio Refurbishment by Craig Heap


We are currently undergoing a major transformation in our Glasgow studio, with extensive refurbishment works well under way to bring a new lease of life to 89 Minerva Street.

Our Interior Design team have worked their magic to create a series of exciting new spaces in the office, all designed to encourage more flexible, creative ways of working, and all finished to an exceptionally high standard.

We’re all looking forward to the grand reveal, so watch this space for further updates!

Architectural Practice of the Year Award by Craig Heap


Our Education Team had a fantastic few days at the Education Buildings Scotland Conference which highlighted all the wonderful work that is being undertaken in the Education sector in Scotland.

We were especially delighted to receive the award for Architectural Practice of the Year and the Pupil / Student Experience award for Caol Joint Campus.

These awards are testament to the talent, hard work and commitment of our wonderful Education Team, working in collaboration with our Clients, contractors and fellow consultants, to deliver high quality Education facilities.

Education Buildings Scotland Conference by Craig Heap

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Our Holmes Miller Education Team are looking forward to attending the Education Buildings Scotland Conference this week at the EICC.

Four of our projects [Lenzie Meadow Primary School, Caol Joint Campus, Balloch Shared Campus and Dalbeattie Learning Campus] have been shortlisted for Awards alongside a fantastic array of Education buildings showcasing the high calibre of design evident in the Scottish Education system.

Our Education Director, Mark Ellson, will also be taking part in the 2040 Everyday Learning Workshop which will be an entertaining and lively discussion on the future of Education.

We are looking forward to a wonderful few days and hopefully we’ll see you there.

Conference Programme

Planning Application at Shawlands Bowling Club by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller has submitted a Planning Application on behalf of Kelvin Properties for a residential development on vacant ground at Shawlands Bowling Club.

The development, located off Pollokshaws Road and bordering a bowling green, offers 34 units for private sale with associated landscaping, private parking and refurbishment of the retained portion of the clubhouse.

The scheme is to be finished in a buff facing brick and gold coloured cladding, with high quality large format glazing throughout.

8,000 capacity stadium for West Cumbria by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller are excited to release images of their design for a new 8,000 capacity stadium for West Cumbria in Workington. The stadium will become the new home for Workington AFC and Workington Town.

Holmes Miller has been working for the last few months with the Council, both clubs and a design team that includes Gleeds and AECOM.

Alan Smith, Leader of Allerdale Borough Council, said: "This development will put our town on the map and be something the whole of West Cumbria’s communities can be proud of."

Times & Star article

Portraits of the City by Craig Heap


Some wonderful work on display at Holmes Miller Architectural Assistant Nada Shehab’s, and her colleague Alastair Kent, exhibition at the New Glasgow Society running till the 14th October.

The entire event and exhibition titled Portraits of the City: Investigating the ‘Glasgow Style’ is sponsored by the GIA and the department at Strathclyde. As well as the designs produced with a contemporary Glasgow Style, Nada and Alastair have produced a series of images and drawings throughout their research of the city that has provoked discussion on what the Glasgow Style actually is!

A beautiful mix of 49 pieces and a few models on shown.

Link to exhibition details

Park Quadrant Penthouses Break £1m Prices by Craig Heap

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With construction well underway, the striking sandstone facades and bay windows are now starting to appear along with the first glimpse of the dynamic penthouse roof profile. The first phase currently under construction, having sold out from plan a few months ago, is already transforming the Park area skyline, and Holmes Miller are delighted to see that demand still remains as high with over half of the overall 98 apartments now sold, and with penthouses now selling for over £1m.

Link to Glasgowist article.

Link to Insider article.

Marina and Elina win AJ Student Prize by Craig Heap


Congratulations to Holmes Miller Architectural Assistants Marina and Elina on the news that their Postgraduate work at University of Strathclyde has been recognised with the AJ Student Prize 2018.

One juror said: ‘[The project] demonstrates the power of creative collaboration and offers a refreshing departure from the starchitect-manufacturing pedagogies that are inclined to over-emphasise the importance of individual portfolio projects.

’Their scheme offers a sensitive and reserved approach to a well-renowned site. The proposed palette and programme reflect that of the scheme’s context, and the people-centred agenda responds to urgent concerns about the future of truly public buildings.’

Link to AJ article

Project Abstract 

Studying the interwoven states of time, memory and space in the context of a territorial realm, Glasgow city becomes an urban canvas, where hidden narratives begin to unfold. Investigating the origins of a place, under a wider frame of reference, aids in understanding the city’s spatial, cultural, political and social development over the past centuries, as well as identifying prominent features or events that got buried under the rapid pace of urbanization. This thesis is an attempt to generate a precedent for a local cultural forum, that triggers the sense of cultural belonging. The city transforms into a palimpsest where citizens perceive present as a collective experience by unravelling the city’s shared pasts while simultaneously generating vision for the city’s future prospects. The exploration of all three states of time as interwoven realities, is expressed through a series of civic structures that seek to empower collective identity through the trading of ideas and public consolidation.

Project Description

Situated in the heart of Glasgow, Synchroni[city] is an attempt to give form to a cultural quarter for the public . Occupying the site where once the College Good Yard stood its typological orientation conveys a restored interpretation to the function of the market, transforming it from the trade of goods to the exchange of ideas. With its emergence it seeks to revive a version of the classical Agora, a public place of concentrated cultural activity and social encounter.  

The quarter is  composed of three main structures, each one reflecting a temporal state of society – past, present and future – through the acts of recollection, reflection and public consolidation. The structure of remembrance, takes the form of an archive of the lost city, containing records of the city’s past that got lost as the city expanded. From physical elements (e.g. the Molendinar burn) to states of societal uprise (e.g. Red Clydeside, Suffragettes, trade and slavery) it restores the public memory of the city. The second object of study is a vessel of public reflection. The hall of hidden narratives rises as a mirror of the city’s terrain assembled in brick and exhibits the product of remembrance in tangible form. It is a symbol of materialization of expressive intuition in the form of public art. Proceeding to the final section the spatial sequence concludes with the peoples’ forum. It is a place for public deliberation taking the merged form of an auditorium and an arcade. A modern cathedral that enables social interaction through the stages of observation on the dialectics of present reality, debate and future contemplation. All the structures are connected through a central amphitheatre and signify the interwoven states of memory and social evolution. The synthesis itself was designed to form a precedent for a local quarter that would be situated in every county of Scotland, with the prospect of their interconnection, ensuing that social structure is established under a system that transcends from the citizen, to its local region, to the greater nation. 

Marina Konstantopoulou & Elina Giannoulaki