Our approachable and experienced team comprised of architects, architectural assistants, designers and technicians, offer a comprehensive design service through all the RIBA work stages from concept through to completion.

We believe that good design is a crucial part of the planning process. Getting the design of a project right is critical to gaining a successful planning consent and avoiding unnecessary delay and costs. 

Our team of RIBA Chartered Architects and Architectural Assistants have a wealth of experience working with homeowners, developers and the public sector.

We can help you to establish your brief and work through your design ideas, whilst bringing solutions to make your building a successful place to live or work in.

Our architectural team are based across Derby, Matlock, Macclesfield and Sheffield.

Key contact

Lindsay Cruddas




The Design Process – From Concept to Completion

Initial review of Site

We will utilise a wide range of resource to identify your site and review the planning and design potential.

We offer a free initial 30minute consultation in the Derby office to discuss your project and establish your design brief. 

A fee estimate will be prepared after this initial meeting before undertaking further work. Every project is different so there is no ‘standard’ costs.

Concept Design

We will work with you to meet your brief and develop concept ideas.

Having an ideas book or a pinterest account is a really useful tool to start the dialogue of ideas and establish what you really want to get out of the finish building. We may ask you how you hope to use the building and what you’re important views from the site are.

We will prepare sketch plans and images for you to see and review before submitting a pre-application advice to your local planning authority. Not every project requires a pre-application submission, but it does help inform the final planning application.

This stage is the point where you tell us you like to do your dishes whilst looking out the kitchen window or you would love a roof-light over the staircase.

We will also advise you of whether you require any third party surveys, this could include but are not limited to: Ecology, Tree Report, Structural Survey, Topographical and Building Survey, Land Contamination, Coal Mining and Asbestos Reports

Developed Design

Following a rigorous concept design and review of any pre-application advice, we will develop the concept into firm ideas and start to prepare plans, elevations and details or 3D imaging to support a planning application.

During the developed design we will continuingly liaise with you about materials and suggest details and alterations that we think will improve your finished building.

The Design Team and Planning Team will come together to produce a planning application for your project and submit to the local planning authority. The Planning team has made strong working connections with the local planning authority and will continue to monitor the application during the 8 -13 week planning process.

Technical Design

Hurrah! If you have got to this stage we have successfully obtained planning permission for your project.

There may be planning conditions to discharge which usually take another 8 weeks to confirm with the LPA.
At this stage we can prepare a building regulations package for submission to an Independent Building Inspector.

You must obtain building regulations before you start construction and the process can take up to 5 weeks once submitted. We have an excellent working relationship with many Independent Building Inspectors and can assist with various construction methods.

We may need to get third party consultants involved such as SAP/SBEM engineer, Structural Engineer or specialist foundation expert of which we will inform you of their respective costs and input.

Tender & Contract Selection

We offer a service to produce a tender package to invite building contractors to tender to build your project.

The tender package usually includes a specification, schedule of works and the working drawings. We will do all the asking and chasing of builders for you and help you to select the best contractor for your building project. At this point we would strongly recommend engaging a quantity surveyor, whilst we can advise briefly on costs per m², we are not experts in that field.

Every project should have a building contract, this protects both you as the customer and the builder as the person offering the services. Each Contract will state as a minimum the contract value, what is and isn’t included in the budget and the length of time the building phase will take. We work with various suites of contracts such as JCT and RIBA contracts.

Construction – Contract Administration

We can offer contract administration on projects.

This means that we will act as an impartial person and attend site regularly to confirm that requests for payment from the contractor are correct with the stage of works and that work is being built in accordance with the approved plans and building contract.

We will issue interim valuations, certificates and architect’s instruction for variations on the build.

Project Completion

Once the building is complete we will issue a practical completion certificate, which you may require for insurance purposes or upon sale of the building.

 Following a year of use the built project is usually revisited with the owner, builder and architect to review the use of the project and if there are any defects in the property.

Architecture Projects

A selection of Architectural Design Projects