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The University of Chester has worked alongside Hull furniture specialist, Claughtons Office Equipment Ltd, to add the finishing touch to the brand new North West Food Research Development Centre (The NoWFOOD Centre). The centre has been partly funded by the European Regional Development Fund and was officially launched in April 2014 to provide students and local businesses with a state-of-the-art food technology facility. Claughtons worked alongside the NoWFOOD Centre team to provide a range of furniture items to make it stand out from other buildings at the University.
The £4.8M centre is located on the main campus and provides a centre of excellence for food science and technology for food producers across the region. Food and drink manufacturers can use the facility to develop new product ideas and find new markets, as well as hold product launches and meetings. The furniture Claughtons supplied includes a variety of conference chairs, meeting tables, reception sofas, seating and coffee tables to give it a professional and modern look.
Maud Duthie, Project Manager for the NoWFOOD centre, comments: “We are delighted with the furniture Claughtons has supplied for us. We wanted the centre to look and feel different to other buildings on campus and Claughtons has certainly helped us to achieve this.
“We decided to work with Claughtons because we felt they really listened to our brief and their recommendations fitted with what we wanted to achieve. We love the look and style of the furniture, particularly the tables as they are modular and really flexible so they can be arranged for different occasions. So many people have also commented on how comfortable the conference chairs are! It’s fantastic to see the result of all our hard work, we look forward to seeing local businesses and students make use of the new facility for years to come.”
Ross Millar, Business Development Manager for Claughtons, comments: “As the facility is mixed use for both students and commercial purposes, we wanted to supply the NoWFOOD Centre with a range of furniture that was flexible and could be used in different ways. The furniture we’ve delivered really fits the bill when it comes to aesthetics and the project was unique because it was completed in just three weeks from initial meeting to installation. This is a really rapid turnaround for such a large project that required a detailed professional consultation which resulted in a high level, quality end product.”
The NoWFOOD Centre houses a variety of test kitchens, laboratories, incubation space for start-ups, meeting rooms, hot desk facilities, conference rooms and a sensory testing unit. The ERDF funding also allows SME food producers up to 12 hours funded use of the centre to help them develop their products and also gain access to business advice.
Claughtons is based in East Yorkshire on Melton Enterprise Park. Established in 1965, the company specialises in providing furniture for the education, public and commercial sectors. Claughtons designs, manufactures and installs its own range of bespoke furniture, with projects ranging from classroom refurbishments to office re-fits.