Meet the finalists

REFURBISHMENT & RESTORATION Over £10 M
All Finalists2020 Winners

Chris Linfoot MCIOB

Willmott Dixon Interiors

Chris Linfoot led with calm assurance this complex scheme to turn old-fashioned cellular offices in a listed building into a modern facility. He marshalled the supply chain and professional team with commanding technical knowledge and a detailed understanding of the intricate challenges they faced, and ensured they understood the quality demanded. He reined back the dismaying time and cost consequences of the discovery of asbestos in all the walls and floors through fast action, regular resequencing and smart solutions.

About the Project

Old Admiralty Building, Westminster

Refurbishment of grade II-listed building into 250,000sqft of office space across five floors, completed in 176 weeks.

Client: Department for Education

Contract: NEC, option A

Value: £54m

At the building where author Ian Fleming did the day job that gave him the material to create James Bond, Chris Linfoot made the most of the construction manager’s licence to thrill. On the contractor’s biggest ever project, Chris reined back the dismaying time and cost consequences of the discovery of asbestos in all the walls and floors through fast action, regular resequencing and smart solutions.

To turn the cellular office space into an open plan, digitally connected office space, an extensive new services installation was required. With service routeing often requiring penetrations into load-bearing masonry, Chris saved stacks of time and back-propping on temporary works by developing a scheme of steel props surrounded by reinforcement to support the structure while shuttering was installed and concrete poured.

He also came up with a clever alternative for levelling the uneven slabs of the pot-and-beam floors. Rather than laying large timber packers in the low areas, which would have added significant weight, he switched to cementitious pads laid at one level to support the pedestals for the raised access flooring. The lighter pads also eliminated the shimming time needed to achieve the precise levels.

Chris led with calm assurance. He marshalled the supply chain and professional team with commanding technical knowledge and a detailed understanding of the intricate challenges they faced, and ensured they understood the quality demanded. His commitment and energy were key to turning a beautiful but neglected and unforgiving building on a constrained site – at one point he was even considering using a helicopter to lift a pair of 10-ton chillers into the building – into a modern and efficient facility. A £40m project at London Southbank University has been won on the back of his success.