DEFRA – Foss House Refurbishment

We joined forces with DEFRA in July 2017 to complete a full refurbishment of office space within Foss House and Mallard House.

Our operatives worked in over 1100 square metres of a multi-tenanted office building to create a functional and modern working space. Through value engineering and smart scheduling of works, we managed to save the client £100,000 and shave 4 weeks off the programme!


9 months

Contract Value

£3.1 million



Scale of the project

1100 square metres of open plan space in Foss House

The Project

We partnered with DEFRA to re-configure their office interior and provide a complete refurbishment of their first floor. During our initial meeting, we were briefed with providing a functional space which honed in on natural light with an open plan layout.

Following this, our team began work on the 9 month project and started converting the first floor space within Foss House into an open plan office and refreshment area. Works were also required to another floor with Foss House and included layout alterations, joinery installations, electrical services including door access and CCTV, flooring and toilet refurbishment.

Our Solution

Our dedicated Contract Manager was the stationary that held the programmes together and provided seamless co-ordination between the multiple trades. He ensured the works were delivered efficiently, from minor demoliton works, to joinery installations, all the way through to the new teapoint instalations, and making sure this all happened within the scheduled time frame.

We understand that noise can be such a nuisance so instead of working the usual 9-5, we were conscious of the type of work we completed during core hours and scheduled noisier works such as using a chopsaw outside of these hours. Sometimes noise can be inevitable though, so in these circumstances, our Site Manager would advise the offices in advance of the works taking place and close all doors to reduce noise.

Added Value

As creating a productive and inspiring space was important to the client, we constructed over 600 linear metres worth of glazed partitioning, allowing natural light to spread throughout the office area. With studies showing increasing natural light leads to better wellbeing and eventually an increase in productivity, we set about using our cost management system to ensure best value for money for this element of the work. By doing so, we saved the £100k, of which, they were extremely pleased about. The partitions recommended were also both damp and sound-proof. 

As the client was pleased with our team’s quality of work and productivity, DEFRA asked us if we could complete an additional refurbishment of a floor in Mallard House, their office adjacent to Foss House. This also included £75k worth of additional passive fire compartmentation works. To accommodate for the additional work, we assigned extra operatives from local projects to ensure we completed this within the original turnaround time.

The Result

After 9 months of hard work, along with 35,000m of data cable and 2000m of waterproof screed and insulation installed, we were finally finished. When Storm Desmond hit the UK in 2015, the office had flooded causing significant damage. The client wanted to ensure this was preventable in the future and following completion, the office is now more protected from flood risk and any future work needed has been minimised.

The extensive work carried out has created a contemporary and practical space that will be home to their teams for many years to come. The client expressed their great satisfaction for the work completed following handover.

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