Carmelite House

Member Article

York Handmade provides 70,000 bricks for iconic London building

The award-winning York Handmade Brick Company has supplied 70,000 bricks to the iconic Carmelite House, the former headquarters of the Daily Mail, on the Victoria Embankment in Central London.

The contract is worth £100,000 and the Alne-based company created a special brick from its Maxima range for this project.

The six-storey, Grade II-listed Carmelite House, which comprises 130,000 sq ft of Grade A office space, is been redeveloped by Quadrant Estates with Orion Capital Managers. It is now fully let.

David Armitage, the chairman of York Handmade, the leading independent brickmaker in the north of England, commented: “This is a very prestigious contract, which really puts York Handmade on the map. Our ability to produce attractive bespoke bricks to order means we are now on the radar of influential architects and builders across the country.

“Carmelite House, overlooking the Thames, is one of the most exciting and enviable office locations adjacent to the brand-new Blackfriars station. The roof terrace and garden provide one of the very best views in London and sets Carmelite House apart. We are so proud to be part of this significant development,” he said.

David Armitage explained: “The architects Fletcher Priest asked London-based brick agents Modular Clay Products to find a brick which matched the Grade II rear façade of Carmelite House and they approached us. We created a 460mm by 50mm brick from our Maxima linear range in a bright red hue.

“This is an unusual long, thin brick, which very few UK manufacturers can produce. It is rapidly becoming a unique selling point in this country, especially in London, as more architects and developers are attracted to the continental linear appearance of bricks.

“The brick was also perfect for Carmelite House. Its distinctive appearance blends in seamlessly with the building’s dramatic new façade, catching the light and charming the eye. As a result, the new-look Carmelite House is a tremendous addition to the Victoria Embankment and that stretch of the Thames,” he added.

This prestigious project comes hard on the heels of a series of significant contracts for York Handmade. Recent high-profile commissions include 90,000 bricks for the iconic Shard, just across the Thames from Carmelite House; 47,000 bricks for Prince Charles’s Dumfries House project; and 300,000 bricks for Chetham’s School of Music in Manchester.

David Armitage explained: “We pride ourselves on being able to provide a huge variety of bricks in whatever size, texture or colour an architect specifies. This is in addition to our standard-sized bricks and our Maxima linear range.

“This diversity and flexibility has allowed us to weather the recent recession, which hit the construction and brick-making industries especially hard, and emerge stronger. Successful high-profile projects such as Carmelite House graphically underline our resilience and enable us to plan ahead with confidence,” he added.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Robert Beaumont .

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