Delivery of a £3.5 million refresh of this 80,000 sq ft distressed asset in the heart of one of the UK’s cherished market towns.
- Client: Kirkstone and JP Morgan
- Regeneration of an 80,000 sq ft existing asset
- Sensitive yet creative architecture and interior design
Located in the heart of Taunton, the 1980s shopping centre was struggling to compete with edge-of-town locations and had gradually deteriorated as an asset. A number of retailers had left the centre and were slowly drifting to these new sites.
As part of a council-led town regeneration plan, Leslie Jones Architecture was bought in to revitalise the 80,000 sq ft scheme through a series of targeted initiatives. In line with the client’s vision, Leslie Jones’ approach focused on emphasising the diversity of the retail offer at the Orchard and its unique sense of place within the historic market town.
The project was carried out in tandem with the rebranding of the centre to create the new fresh Orchard, which references Somerset’s strong rural tradition. The three entrances have been reworked in planer glass and brass to provide a striking introduction to the centre in an otherwise constrained urban site, while capitalising on the council’s improvements to the public realm.
Investment in premium materials, an upgraded stone floor, new ceilings and feature lighting have enhanced the interior look and feel of the centre. In line with modern retail requirements, double-height shop fronts have also been created, enabling tenants to maximise their brands and introduce superior, quality fit-outs.
Leslie Jones’ functional and yet creative designs have bought to life the client’s desire for a city centre shopping experience in an historical market town, while improving both the retailer and consumer experience.