Architects Willacy Horsewood are celebrating their 25th birthday this month.
The architectural practice, which was founded in 1989 by Kevin Horsewood and Mark Willacy, started out from a home office and the partners have seen massive changes in the sector over the last quarter of a century.
Kevin said: “We’d worked together before so knew that we would get on well.”
The business began from a spare room in Mark’s home and despite the tough economic climate they quickly secured clients. It wasn’t long before they needed more space to work in and moved to more suitable office space. After 12 years in Chester city centre they moved to larger premises in Mollington, where they are ideally located for servicing their clients from across North Wales, Cheshire and Manchester.
Over the years they have worked on a broad range of projects from exclusive residential schemes for private home owners, to large-scale commercial developments and sensitive conservation projects. They are the architects behind the Backford Hall scheme in Chester. Formerly Cheshire County Council offices, the project involves converting and restoring the Grade II-listed hall and outbuildings into private housing and the construction of 45 new houses within the grounds.
When asked about the business’s success, Kevin said: “We launched the business during a recession and learnt a lot from that experience, which meant we were more prepared when the recent downturn happened.
“Some businesses thrive during an economic downturn and we understood that we had to focus on work for clients who weren’t feeling the negative impact of the recession.
“I think the other reason we have been successful is our relationships with our clients.
“Although we’ve grown, Mark and I have always said we want to take a hands-on approach.
“At Willacy Horsewood one of the partners is involved in every project from initial concept right through to completion.
“We make sure we are always available and in my experience that’s what clients really want.”