The Science of Workplace Design.™
The Science of Workplace Design.™

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A multi-functional, flexible, and modern environment.


The underlying brief demanded the creation of a ‘best in class’ chambers, with the ability to be adaptable and flexible for future growth, whilst improving both the client-facing facilities and working environment in reflection of the chambers’ existing culture and history.

During the briefing stage we undertook interviews and implemented our Activity Support Questionnaire (ASQ) to analyse the barristers’ existing working environment and working practices. It was clear from initial feedback that there were some key areas of concern as well as a strong sense of satisfaction with the current working model. Primary issues included the need to maintain confidentiality, quiet working, access to resources and filing, desk-based activity working and use of technology.

In addition, there was an acknowledged need to improve the client-facing meeting room suite and to provide flexible seminar space to facilitate outward-facing seminars and events to raise further awareness of 39 Essex Chambers.


Sector: Professional
Size: 42,000 sq ft
Place: London
Capabilities: Research, Consultancy, Design, Furniture
Outcomes: ‘Best in class’, Flexible for future growth



The design solutions are centered around supporting the barristers with a range of cellular office accommodation, all offering natural daylight and excellent privacy.


Centralised open plan clerking and administration areas provide easy access and support to the barristers while conveniently located resource and refreshment points ensure all facilities are close to hand.

The modern yet formal meeting rooms provide an impressive facility with flexibility, privacy and fully integrated technology including video conferencing.

Harmsen Tilney Shane were invaluable to us. The team interpreted the brief brilliantly, working closely with us throughout the whole process. The result is a beautifully designed building which also works practically as a working environment for both our barristers and staff.

David Barnes
39 Essex Chambers' Chief Executive & Director of Clerking

Our client's thoughts


Much of the project’s success was the result of consulting with barristers and partners early on. This provided a robust brief, and established trust with the project team.

Barristers now have an exemplar client experience environment, further enhanced by impressive views over the rooftops to Lincoln’s Inn Fields.

Barristers and Chambers staff now have a multifunctional space that is supportive of everyone’s current needs, but more importantly, has room to grow as 39 Essex Chambers continues to be recognised as a leading international chambers.

Activity Support Questionnaire
Workplace Research

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