Derby County and former England goalkeeper Scott Carson joined clients and local businesses at a special event to mark Justin Smith Architects’ 15th anniversary and the official opening of its new premises in the heart of Cathedral Quarter.

Scott did the official honours, cutting the ribbon to signal the official opening of the studios, as well as the birthday celebration cake.

Guests were treated to canapes and champagne on arrival, before having a guided tour of the firm’s new base.

The business resided in a prominent office in Friar Gate Studios for 10 years before acquiring the 4,000 ft2 building on Queen Street in 2016.

The new premises on Queen Street, next to Ye Olde Dolphin Inne and close to Derby Cathedral, has been the subject of a major refurbishment. Set over four floors, it now features a retail reception, design studios, consultation spaces, meeting rooms and staff break out spaces.

The decision to give the business a high street presence comes during a period of significant growth and will signal the launch of a new venture, the Design Advice Centre.

Commenting on the firm’s 15th anniversary and the launch of its new premises, Justin said:

“When I started my business from home 15 years ago, I had a strong vision of the sort of architectural practice I wanted to create and the recent move to our purpose designed studios fit that original vision.

I’d like to thank everyone who has been part of our story – especially our clients, business connections and of course the team at Justin Smith Architects. It’s great to see so many of those people here tonight to share this special occasion with. Thanks to Derby County Football Club and Scott Carson for carrying out the official opening.

We hope that our new high street presence will make architectural advice accessible to everyone.”

Justin Smith Architects is an interdisciplinary practice which caters for a broad spectrum of services and sectors. The company recently developed concepts for several key sites in Derby, including the Assembly Rooms and the University of Derby Science Park. Whilst recent residential projects include a purpose designed lake house, a Passivhaus and an old water pump conversion.

The firm were commended as finalists in the Creative Business of the Year Award at this year’s Derby Telegraph Business Awards and were the only architectural firm at the event.

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