Meet the Finalists

2024 | Commercial

Tom Arkley MCIOB
Willmott Dixon Interiors

Strip-out and category B fit-out of two floors and a community space, completed in 44 weeks.

Never happier than with a juicy construction issue to solve, Tom Arkley relished this strip-out and fit-out scheme.

About the Project

Thomas Hardy House & Dugdale Arts Centre, Enfield

With poor information on the existing base build, there were major challenges with integrating the mechanical, electrical, plumbing and heating services. The design responsibility may not officially have lain with Tom, but the proactive problem-solver energetically resolved the issues. Other problems he attacked with zest included the ductwork for the community space mezzanine failing to match up with the connectors to the air handling units, as the design had been mistakenly drawn up in reverse.

The biggest challenge of all, though, was incorporating a vast amount of change, adding around £2.4m to project value and including a very late instruction for the £1.4m community space fit-out. Tom drove this through while maintaining the integrity of the project. He laid on workshops to facilitate quick and correct decision-making, and the original programme was lengthened by just 20 days as a result, with delivery in time for the scheduled Christmas opening.

It was exactly the same sort of outcome that had persuaded the client to offer the follow-on contract in the first place, with Tom completing his previous project on a Friday and starting this one on the following Monday.