We were invited by a client to get involved in the furniture design and layout optimisation of the lecture theatre for Loughborough University. They required thoughtful education seating to enhance students’ experiences as well as allow lecturers to interact more effectively with them. Our work had to be coordinated with the architect, making sure all tables and seats are fitted correctly to the structural support in the floor. We also needed to achieve all minimum clearance gaps required by the current regulations so as to provide sufficient emergency exits throughout.

Distinctive bespoke furniture in a demanding environment


We took the initial layout supplied by the client and produced a 3D model of the proposed design, making sure it complies with the above requirements. Once the design was agreed we updated and optimised the layout but also produced a number of realistic renderings showing specific detail and demonstrating the view from different seats throughout the room. We then produced the engineering drawings for manufacturing and assisted with making a sample module.

Award winning design


The result was the award winning Connect system. A seating solution that can be completely customised to create the perfect learning environment. As well as supporting different teaching layouts, it reduces the overall space requirement and gives everyone a clear line of sight. With solid wooden seat backs, fixed writing shelves and integrated power and data ports, it’s been tried and successfully tested in universities across the UK and Europe. The project went on to win numerous awards including RIBA East Midlands Building of the Year and FX International Design Award for Workplace Seating. The seating has now been refurnished in numerous universities including Leeds University, Newcastle University, Glasgow University and SOAS University of London.