3 Broadgate

British Land
City of London, London

Whilst a director at ORMS Richard Warwick won the project and then led the design of a complete refurbishment and recladding of 3 Broadgate for British Land. The existing building was designed as a marketing suite but had more recently been used as a facilities office. In the heart of their Broadgate Estate British Land wanted a new marketing suite to showcase the major redevelopment of the area.

The design opened-up the existing building, which was dark and uninspiring by creating a large arch, installing a café and soffit artwork encouraged people to walk underneath the building rather than to the sides.


The first recorded use of the site as tenter grounds forms the narrative for the facade. A tenter ground was an area used for drying newly manufactured cloth after fulling. The wet cloth was hooked onto frames called tenters and stretched taut so that the cloth would dry flat and square. The expression “on tenterhooks” derives its meaning from this process, meaning in a state of nervous tension.

We saw the veil as a reference to the medieval cloth making process – the tiles are hung from a series of cables fixed to a ring of hooks at the top of the building.

The building is now open and has already formed a new focal point to the estate

Tenter grounds

Tenter hooks

Bishops Gate area of London, c. 17?? The red dot marks the approximate location of the building today.