Signbox delivers architectural sensitivity and modern functionality in British Academy signage project

Signbox have recently completed a major wayfinding and display signage project at 10-11 Carlton House Terrace in Central London. Carlton House Terrace is home to the British Academy – the UK’s national body for the humanities and social sciences – and one of London’s most impressive and imposing Georgian buildings. Famous past occupants include the Victorian-era Prime Minister William Gladstone, and the building’s stunning interior and exterior period features have seen it used frequently in more recent years for television dramas and films.

Signbox’s opportunity to pitch came thanks to a personal recommendation made to the British Academy by the nearby Institute of Directors, where Signbox had recently completed a similar project. As the IoD building shares many of the same magnificent period features, Signbox had recent proven ability to deliver a project of this nature.

Says Mark Bartlett, Managing Director, Signbox: “We were briefed to design a signage system that evoked the building’s rich architectural heritage, while ensuring it also delivered clear and practical wayfinding functionality for a busy conference and meeting venue with numerous first-time visitors every day. One of three companies invited to pitch, we were able to draw on our recent successful project at the IoD and on similar past experience to demonstrate a proven ability to work within architecturally sensitive environments, as well as having a range of modular contemporary signage systems and the skillset to develop bespoke requirements to a specific brief.”

Working to strict corporate guidelines, Signbox also had to ensure it delivered a signage network that could be removed in its entirety when required for filming purposes. This was achieved using simple and stylish polished brass button fixings. Signbox was pleased to be able to deliver on all requirements, on time, and on budget.

Jo Hopkins, Director of Development at the British Academy adds: “Signbox is a very professional company to work with and has provided high quality signage throughout the building.  We are very pleased with the end result in terms of the aesthetic look of the signs and the way in which they help guests orientate their way around the building. The illuminated glass donor board they created looks particularly impressive, as does the series of display panels they have produced with copy written by prominent Fellows. All this enables us to convey information about the history of the British Academy and the significance of the humanities and social sciences to a wide range of people attending events at Carlton House Terrace.”

The installed signage featured 8mm thick toughened optiwhite glass, supported by polished brass project fixings and graphics printed on a Durst P10-160 to a reverse applied optically clear polyester. 56 wayfinding signs were installed in total, all of them during normal working hours to avoid unnecessary extra costs being imposed on the client.

In addition, after work began, the British Academy placed a further order to supply display panels for their annual summer Soirée in late June, an exclusive invitation only event, which included speeches from philosopher Roger Scruton and former Bank of England Governor Mervyn King. Signage for this event – which included an LED Project Lumos illuminated glass donor board for the reception area, was also completed on budget and on schedule. Discussions over further orders for bespoke event signage for future events are ongoing.