Architects celebrate 30-year Bond with Sheffield

The boadroom at Bond Bryan's Crookes headquarters.
The boadroom at Bond Bryan's Crookes headquarters.

If Sheffield was an architects it would be Bond Bryan.

The firm, which is celebrating its 30th birthday this week, operates all over the world, has offices around the country, including London, and has designed a string of award-winning buildings at home and abroad.

-Jonathan Herbert, managing director, Bond Bryan Architects.

-Jonathan Herbert, managing director, Bond Bryan Architects.

But bosses are perhaps most proud of the impact it has had on its home city.

Bond Bryan has built landmark factories, flats, schools and colleges which help organisations thrive.

It hires architecture graduates from the two universities – bolstering their reputations and attracting top class students to the city.

And it is committed not just to keeping its headquarters in Sheffield, but investing in them.

From left: Jonathan Herbert, Sian Tunstill, John Lee, Bruce Raw, Matt Hutton.

From left: Jonathan Herbert, Sian Tunstill, John Lee, Bruce Raw, Matt Hutton.

The firm, based high up in Crookes, plans to relocate to the city centre after its lease is up in four years.

Managing director Jonathan Herbert said: “Sheffield will remain our hub, our most active office. There are really talented people here and we bring the work home.

“All the directors live in Sheffield and 75 per cent of our staff were trained at one of the universities. That source of talent probably underpins the whole thing.”

The practice is housed in an eight-sided former congregational church on Springvale Road where 65 staff in an open plan office are working on 50 projects.

The Royce Translational Centre for Sheffield University.

The Royce Translational Centre for Sheffield University.

Mr Herbert added: “When the founders bought this place around 1990 there was not much business in the city centre and they saw no advantage in being there.”

Now, director John Lee said he felt as if Sheffield’s “time had come”.

He added: “It’s attractive, affordable, it has a very good workforce, they’re all key markers for investors. The city is a more commercial place than ever.”

Graduates, who may leave university after seven years with £80,000 of debt, appreciate it too.

An artist's impression showing the inside of Sheffield University's Heartspace development, which will connect the Mappin Building with the Central Wing.

An artist's impression showing the inside of Sheffield University's Heartspace development, which will connect the Mappin Building with the Central Wing.

He added: “Ten years ago people didn’t want to stay in Sheffield. But today it has the balance between access to the Peak, affordability and lifestyle.”

Sheffield’s skyline is testament to its current success, with cranes visible in every direction.

The under-construction HSBC building on Pinstone Street is the first block in the council’s ‘Heart of the City Two’ project for offices, shops and restaurants.

In a sign of its popularity, director Matt Hutton said they were already speaking to a developer interested in the fourth block in the scheme.

Bond Bryan has also designed a large flats and shops complex set to stand on the junction of Ecclesall Road and Pomona Street. Work is on track to start towards the end of this year.

And it created the University of Sheffield’s ambitious Heartspace scheme – a £20m curving glass roof connecting listed engineering buildings on Mappin Street. After months of preparation work, the structure is set to take shape from July.

The Heartspace installation is set to start this month.

The Heartspace installation is set to start this month.

Mr Hutton said: “It will be unique in the region.”

The contract, won in a competitive bidding process, comes after the company designed more than 10 hi-tech buildings for the university’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre at Catcliffe.

Bond Bryan Architects was founded in 1988 by Jon Bond and John Bryan.

Turnover this year is a record £8m.

The firm also has a strong digital department with experts in demand around the world and it is proud of its ‘masterplanning’ and consultancy work in which senior staff look at the big picture, not just a single building.

COMMERCIAL SUCCESS AND ACCLAIM FROM PEERS SETS FIRM UP FOR ANOTHER 30 YEARS

The ‘first physical build’ of HS2.

The Bond Bryan-designed National College of High Speed Rail in Doncaster is the first building of the £80bn scheme.

And it won the Sheffield architects two of a clutch of awards in this its 30th year.

It received a Yorkshire Award and a Sustainability Award from the Royal Institute of British Architects for the college.

It also won a RIBA for its Advanced Manufacturing Building for the University of Nottingham.

Managing director Jonathan Herbert said: “Commercially this year’s been exceptional, we have been winning work up and down the country. But it is also very important to be recognised by your peers.”

Factory 2050.

Factory 2050.

Institute for Education, Sheffield Hallam University.

Institute for Education, Sheffield Hallam University.

An artist's impression of a private and student flat complex planned for Ecclesall Road/Pomona Street by developer Hallminster.

An artist's impression of a private and student flat complex planned for Ecclesall Road/Pomona Street by developer Hallminster.

Charles Street, Sheffield Hallam University.

Charles Street, Sheffield Hallam University.

National College for High Speed Rail Doncaster.

National College for High Speed Rail Doncaster.