The Factory

Set in the Royal Docks industrial landscape, The Factory acts as a beacon for creative re-use from the most modest beginnings. We have helped Projekt to repurpose a cluster of buildings owned by Tate & Lyle for use by local businesses, new start-ups, events and filming. It was important to take a light touch approach so that these abandoned offices and storage areas could be brought up to standard while acting as a super flexible shell for a variety of different functions.

We kept the raw industrial aesthetic which is prevalent in the area but made the structures inhabitable by upgrading the building fabric, such as roof repairs and replacing windows. When we found great existing interiors – including some stunning parquet flooring in Building A – then this was cleaned up and celebrated. The mission was to create affordable workspace within a harsh, challenging setting.

Tenants can now enjoy an outdoor seating area, as well as a new café/reception that was introduced thanks to a painted plywood timber bar, with reclaimed furniture for the pre-loved aesthetic. The programme of the different spaces changes all the time but we’ve been delighted to see a range of SMEs take over the studios while The Beams demonstrated the cultural potential of the area with their headline-grapping Thin Air exhibition. This is the kind of project that bring business and communities back to dilapidated parts of London.

Photography by James Stephenson, The Beams