For us at Hardscape, this year has certainly had some fantastic highlights but it has…
* Video highlights *
2018 – the year that featured the Winter Olympics in South Korea in February, the royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle in May and the World Cup in Russia in June and July.
At Hardscape it has been a year of development, hard work, collaboration and the opening of new Hardscape offices and showroom at the start of 2018 in Edinburgh together with a new and exciting warehousing and ‘artwork’ facility at Logistics North, Bolton, Lancashire.
2018 has seen the fulfilment of some of our most landmark projects since Hardscape was formed back in 1994 and we are very excited to be looking forward to our 25th anniversary for 2019!
In February 2018 Preston’s much anticipated multi-million-pound market hall opened its doors to customers for the first time. A collaborative Hardscape Chinese granite palette provided a sharp yet warm and welcoming feeling to three different areas of the market.
Hardscape was proud to provide additional paving to Preston again, and not just the market, to give the city a consistent paving colour and material structure, which has aimed to attract even more people to the renowned ‘administrative centre of Lancashire’.
May saw the first stages of Liverpool City Council’s £32 million development project to improve Great Howard Street in constructing a visually spectacularly-designed gateway linking Liverpool with Sefton.
The ambitious project presented a major design and engineering challenge with a brief to create 46 pieces of artwork on the existing 6 x 1.8m precast cement bridge panels – on-site. Hardscape was enlisted to supply the stone/concrete materials and to manage the entire design process.
Over in Dublin in June Hardscape Ireland was proud sponsor of the Irish Landscape Institute Awards ceremony which was held at the Irish Architectural Archive (IAA), Dublin. The Awards were given for excellence in Landscape Design across a range of categories and show the breadth, depth and quality of the work of landscape architects in Ireland.
In the summer Hardscape proudly announced its involvement in the regeneration of the magnificent Grade I listed Piece Hall in Halifax at it opened it’s doors on the 1st August. The project won awards at the Landscape Institute ceremony in November and shortly afterwards at the Stone Federation Awards Great Britain.
From large-scale transformations to complex engineering feats, 2018 also saw the opening of the V&A Museum in Dundee in September, which recently won the Institute of Architects’ supreme award. Working closely with Optimised Environments (OPEN) Landscape Architects and contractors BAM and Careys, Hardscape supplied a variety of materials to the V&A Museum.
Hardscape’s Aidan Baun, commented at the time: “The V&A Dundee was a project everyone at Hardscape cared a great deal about being involved in. It was an intricate and complex landscape scheme, both inside and out, which we knew we were best placed to deliver on.”
Dundee Waterfront’s £1billion regeneration, which involves 240 hectares of development land stretching 8km alongside the River Tay, is a major 30-year vision to transform the city into a world leading destination for visitors and businesses and the £80.11million V&A Dundee is the flagship of the redevelopment scheme. Hardscape also supplied paving materials to the new Dundee train station.
Approaching the latter part of the year, October brought an amazing scheme that has six unique benches made with a number of Artscape processes which were installed outside Accrington town hall. The bespoke designs recount Accrington’s rich and proud history, paying a special tribute to the Accrington Pals, Accrington Stanley FC and the area’s role in the Industrial Revolution.
The project brief brought together several collaborators to fulfil the vision of Hyndburn Borough Council and Lancashire County Council. The councils set out with the aim to create a civic space for events that celebrated Accrington’s Town and Market Halls, as well as commemorate the Accrington Pals.
In November we featured Medway’s Chatham Placemaking Project – an area with a strong sense of place, well connected, and easily accessible and enjoyed by all. The main aim of the public realm project was to upgrade the route from Chatham Station to the Waterfront.
The exemplary artscape project ultimately opened up pedestrian access and widened the streetscape, improving the quality of the public realm in the process.
Other notable completed projects included bespoke artscape personalised tribute projects, working with Your Tribute Ltd at Liverpool FC (Anfield Forever) and (Bremner Square) Leeds Utd FC. HMS Caroline and Pump House, Belfast and City Quays (Marriott Hotel phase), Belfast. Almost completed in 2018 is the fabulous Old Vinyl Factory at Hayes in Hillingdon and is due to be fully completed in the early part of 2019.
Our partnership with the Landscape Institute continued to go from strength to strength this year as we participated in sell-out CPD events in Manchester and the LI Conference in London. This gave Hardscape the opportunity to provide attendees with in-depth insights into some of the regions most standout public realm and regeneration projects via Hardscape hosted walking tours.
We ended the year with headline sponsorship of the LI Awards, which recognised the industry’s most accomplished projects of the year.
We continued to lead the way in 2018 in championing ethical supply chain and adherence to the Modern Slavery Act. Our Head of Global Supply Chain, Glenn Bradley, ensures that Hardscape are wholly working within the recognised processes of the UN and the UK Government to trade ethically and are recognised by Government, Trade Unions, NGOs and other Corporates, as well as within the industry, as Achiever Status members of the Ethical Trading Initiative.
Glenn is also recognised as an Ethical Trade Pioneer in the field of Business and Human Rights and is presently the Chair of the Irish Business and Human Rights Forum.
In November some of our male members of the Hardscape team at Bolton HQ came together to raise a whopping £1000 for MovemberUK this year, helping to change the face of men’s health.
2019 is already shaping up to be as exciting as 2018 as we continue to drive forward in all areas of design, innovation and sourcing the highest quality materials for each of the projects that we specify. We would like to thank all of our customers and partners for their continued support and we look forward to a prosperous 2019 celebrating 25 years of Hardscape!
See here for a brief video compilation of some of the projects highlighted above from 2018.