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The Year in Review 2017

Wednesday, 20 December, 2017

As the year draws to a close, we're taking a look back at our highlights from 2017. It's been our busiest year yet working with lots of new clients and an impressive list of project completions, spanning the UK.

January 2017

Revit Investment

This year we took huge steps forward in the visualisation service that we provide to our customers. By upgrading to the industry leading building software, we are not only able to provide our customers with a true representation of how their finished design is going to look, but allows us to better collaborate with the project architects from the very beginning of the design process. This software investment has enabled us to become BIM Level 2 compliant.

Artboard_6-100.jpg 18 Manvers Street - University of Bath

As joint supplier to the University of Bath we completed an installation at 18 Manvers Street in January. The former police station has been renovated into a new student learning zone which provides a city centre location for student facing services.


February 2017

Artboard_6-100.jpg Avon & Somerset Police & Crime Commissioner - North Somerset Police Centre

Prior to being awarded the sole supply contract for Avon & Somerset Police our installation at the new Police Centre began in February. The new facility was complete and operational by April 2017, and is used by re-locating response teams, providing better access to the local communities they cover.


Health & Safety Training Investment

In order to comply with health and safety requirements a number of staff members completed health and safety courses and qualifications this year. Neil Bowen, Operations Manager and Ashley Proverbs, Installations Manager passed the ‘Site Management Safety Training Scheme’ (SMSTS) course with flying colours!

Huw Jones, General Manager successfully completed the ‘IOSH (Institution of Occupational Safety and Health) Managing Safely’ qualification which offers managers an understanding of the practical actions needed for the health and safety of their teams.

Michael Parrish, Managing Director also completed the ‘Health and Safety for Directors and Senior Managers’ course to ensure risks are minimized and all procedures up-to-date.

Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair

In February we also visited a very cold Stockholm! After acclimatising to the Scandinavian weather, we headed on in to the main exhibition hall. In comparison to other exhibitions we’ve visited, Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair was a lot smaller and more manageable; there were still around 700 exhibitors but being housed within three halls made the event easily digestible and gave Daniel and Mike a lot more time to soak up the atmosphere and engage with the great product on display.

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March 2017

Artboard_5-100.jpg Project Award - University of Nottingham, Teaching and Learning Hub

In March, we were thrilled to have been successful in tendering for loose furniture provision at the University of Nottingham's new Teaching and Learning Hub.

The Teaching and Learning Hub is the latest addition to University Park. Positioned adjacent to Hallward Library and in the centre of campus, this will provide a much needed boost to the University's teaching requirements and will include a number of differing size teaching rooms, collaborative lecture theatre, performing arts space, social learning hub and staff offices. Installation is planned for early 2018.

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University of Bristol - Supplier Exhibition

We also ran a one-day pop-up exhibition at the University of Bristol in March. This was a great chance for members of our Capital Projects team and the day-to-day University of Bristol team to meet members of the Estates department and end users to show who we are and what we do. It was also the perfect opportunity to give our new pop-up exhibition a road-test!


April 2017

Re-designing our Showroom

Our showroom is an opportunity for clients to experience our products and services, to learn how effective space planning can impact on the success of their organisation and to see that we practice what we preach. This year we have updated a number of areas in our ground floor showroom, refurbished our 1st floor showroom and added a number of key new furniture ranges. We introduced a number of new brands such as Hay, Offecct and Weisner Hager.



HEPCW Meet The Supplier Exhibition 2017

We had a very successful day in April meeting members of the Higher Education Purchasing Consortium Wales (HEPCW) in Swansea University's Singleton Campus.


Artboard_4-100.jpg Avon & Somerset Police & Crime Commissioner Contract Award

On Friday 21st April we were formally announced as the chosen furniture provider for the “Supply, Delivery and Installation of Office Furniture and Associated Items for Avon and Somerset Police and Crime Commissioner for three years. We have also worked with Avon & Somerset Police on several capital projects this year.

May 2017

Artboard_4-100.jpg Sole Supply Contract Award - University of Wolverhampton

Following our tender submission in March of this year, we are delighted to introduce ourselves as the new sole supplier of Office, Classroom, Teaching, Restaurant & Social Area furniture for the University of Wolverhampton.

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Artboard_5-100.jpg Project Award - University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Academic Building

We are pleased to announce that we’ve been selected as the preferred furniture provider for the Design, Supply and Install of Furniture at the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David’s Academic Building. This building forms part of the first phase of the University’s new purpose built facility for learning, teaching and research situated at the Swansea SA1 Waterfront.

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Clerkenwell Design Week 2017

In May various members of the BOF team headed to London for the award winning Clerkenwell Design Week. The annual design festival attracts large numbers of people to an area with more creative businesses and architects per square mile than anywhere else on the planet.


June 2017

Artboard_4-100.jpg Contract Award - YPO

The Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation is a leading public sector procurement organisation with a huge range of products and services available to customers including schools, local authorities, charities, emergency services and many other businesses. This major framework gives us access to public sector opportunities across the UK.

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Artboard_5-100.jpg Project Award - University of Bristol, Centre for Innovation

The Centre for Innovation relocated this summer from the Knot on the 2nd floor of 40 Berkley Square to Richmond Building off Richmond Hill Avenue. As an appointed furniture supplier to University of Bristol, BOF were invited to tender for the refurbishment project.

Design Office Expansion

In June, our Design team expanded past the point of fitting into their existing office. As a result, our Design Team moved into a larger space here at our Showroom and brought with them a lot of new ideas for how the space should work. Utilising our E-Bench sit-to-stand desking and a newly designed bespoke storage wall with integrated projection screen our Team are now fully equipped to keep producing the inspiring design schemes our clients love.


July 2017

Artboard_6-100.jpg Birmingham City University - Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

In April 2016 BOF were invited to tender for the loose furniture package at the new Royal Birmingham Conservatoire. Tenders were returned to Faithful+Gould cost consultants for evaluation with the client.

Featuring 9,000 sq m of purpose designed teaching, rehearsal and state of the art performance space, it offers unrivalled opportunities for students. The audio and video digital infrastructure is designed to enhance and support live performance and to allow students to experiment with new technologies.

The installation across five floors of the new building was completed in August 2017 ready for the new academic year.

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Artboard_6-100.jpg University House - University of Warwick

Located in between central campus and Westwood, University House is the main hub of University of Warwick administration. We were pleased to accommodate the clients request for Symphony bench desking, Ensemble task chairs with associated storage and were able to meet the challenging delivery program.


August 2017

Artboard_5-100.jpg BBC Cardiff Framework award

We are pleased to announce that in August 2017 we were the only supplier to be awarded a position on five lots of the framework agreement for loose Furniture at BBC Wales Broadcasting House at Central Square, Cardiff following a highly competitive OJEU tender process. The £120 million building will replace the BBC Cymru Wales Broadcasting House in Llandaff Cardiff, with BBC staff moving in 2019.

The building was designed by Foster + Partners, and when fully open, it will accommodate 1,200 staff on its four floors, providing office, studio and production space. The building is on the site of the former Cardiff Central bus station. It is envisaged that an estimated 50,000 people will visit the new building every year. ISG are the appointed Main Contractor and Sheppard Robson are designing the interior. The installation is planned to commence in September 2018 and we are thrilled to be involved in this flagship project.


Artboard_6-100.jpg Hartley Library - University of Southampton

Areas on Levels 1, 4 and 5 of the Hartley Library have benefitted from the summer 2017 refurbishment. On Levels 1 and 4, new quiet study spaces are provided in areas of the building previously not open to users. A new Group Study Room has been created on Level 4, power is supplied to all new desk tops and the two Level 4 Library Training Rooms are now presented and equipped to the high, modern standard students require. In total around 450 additional study spaces have been provided.

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September 2017

COUP 2017 and RETHINK newspaper launch

In September, we launched the first issue of our newspaper, RETHINK, ready for our exhibit at COUP 2017. From biophilic design to how acoustics affect workplace productivity, the newspaper covers a wide range of content. Click here to download a copy.

This years Conference on University Purchasing (COUP) was hosted by HEPCW and Swansea University at their Science & Innovation Bay Campus. We furnished 10 buildings on this prestigious campus in Summer 2015 which was our largest project to date. This event was a great success and we were pleased to meet so many of our clients over the three days.

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Artboard_4-100.jpg Contract Award - Powys Council

In October 2017 we were awarded a contract under NPS Framework NPS-CFM-0006-14 (Lot 1b) - Provision of Furniture Solutions for the supply and installation of office furniture in Council premises in Powys.

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Artboard_6-100.jpg George Edward Library - University of Surrey

We also worked with the University of Surrey to redesign parts of their main library. The improvements to the George Edward Library have created 120 additional spaces for this academic year. Phase 2 is planned for next summer for further areas of levels 4 and 5. The University is gathering student feedback to ensure further improvements fulfill study requirements and current trends.

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Artboard_6-100.jpg Innovation Centre - University of Bristol

The Centre for Innovation relocated this summer from the Knot on the 2nd floor of 40 Berkley Square to Richmond Building off Richmond Hill Avenue. As an appointed furniture supplier to University of Bristol, BOF were invited to tender for the refurbishment project.

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Macmillan Coffee Morning

In September we raised an impressive £237 during our coffee morning for Macmillan Cancer Support. The winners of the 2017 Great BOF Bake Off were... Joyce, Lucy and Shannen!


October 2017

Artboard_4-100.jpg Contract Award - Welsh Government

We are pleased to announce that BOF has been awarded the contract for the provision of Office Furniture & Fittings, Space Planning and Interior Design Services for the Welsh Government Estate following a competitive tender process.

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Artboard_4-100.jpg Contract Award - National Assembly for Wales

BOF are pleased to announce that we have been awarded the contract for the provision of Office Furniture and Associated Services for the National Assembly Estate following a competitive tender process. This is a call-off contract under the National Procurement Service (NPS) - Provision of Furniture Solutions Framework (Lot 1 provision of Office Furniture, geographical zone 4) which BOF joined in May 2015.

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Artboard_6-100.jpg Colston Street - University of Bristol

As an approved furniture supplier to the University of Bristol we worked with Oxford Architects and the client to specify suitable ranges of furniture for social spaces, dining areas and study bedrooms.

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Offecct Visit

Offecct are a Swedish design brand, founded by acclaimed designers Kurt Tingdal and Anders Englund. In October, our Design Manager Daniel and Graphic Designer Matthew visited the brands showroom and manufacturing facility in Tibro, Sweden to take part in Offecct’s Sales Academy. The trip was a busy 3 days with lots to learn about the brand’s history, products and sustainability story.


November 2017

Procurex Wales 2017

Wales’ annual Festival of Public Procurement returned on Thursday, 9th November 2017. Working towards the ‘Taking Wales Forward 2016-2021‘ strategy, the most important day of the year for Wales’ public procurement community filled the Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff.

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Artboard_6-100.jpg Connaught Halls - University of Southampton

As the appointed furniture supplier to the University of Southampton we refurbished the social spaces and entrance lobby of Connaught Halls in September 2017.

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Artboard_6-100.jpg Aberystwyth University, Hugh Owen Library

Aberystwyth University is one of the key Welsh Universities we supply via the HEPCW consortium. The Hugh Owen Library is the main University Library and the centre of administration for Information Services. Based on Penglais campus, it provides a space to study, whether you wish to study quietly on your own or with others. A range of facilities are provided both to help you with your studies and for quiet relaxation.

We recently installed furniture on Level D of the library which is due to reopen on 3rd January 2018. We hope students enjoy the new space.

Project case study coming soon...

December 2017

Artboard_5-100.jpg University of Nottingham, Advanced Manufacturing Building

The construction of the Advanced Manufacturing Building on Jubilee Campus will connect the campus to Derby road and the adjacent Gatehouse Lodge. The building comprises of office space, laboratories and seminar space for the Faculty of Engineering. As the sole appointed furniture supplier to the University under the SUPC framework agreement our Capital Projects team worked closely with the UoN Capital Projects team to develop the final specification. We installed loose furniture in classrooms, collaborative teaching spaces, post-graduate rooms, workshops, offices and social spaces throughout the three floors of this cutting edge building.


Artboard_4-100.jpg NEUPC Contract Award

During 2017 the NEUPC (North Eastern Universities Purchasing Consortium) joined with the SUPC (Southern Universities Purchasing Consortium) and other purchasing consortia to form the largest Higher Education furniture framework in the UK available to all Universities in England and Wales. We are extremely proud to have been awarded Rank 1 on this prestigious framework for Lot 1 - office, classroom, catering, reception, soft seating, bistro and conference for both the North and South zones. The contract commenced in December 2017.

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So there we have it, our highlights from the last year - what a busy year it has been!

From all of us at BOF we'd like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


As always, for more information on any of the topics in this blog, drop an email to or leave a comment below.

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