Latest News

Image of Structural Engineers Standing with Axes in front of Targets at Whistle Punks Urban Axe Throwing Event

YEP, it’s urban axe throwing*

12 October 2017

Peter Dann’s finest attended the YEP Sports ‘Urban Axe Throwing’ social on Tuesday, channeling their inner lumber-thugs as they sought to stick iron in wood.

This proved very difficult; however, out of 30-odd participants from various entrepeneurial orgs, our very own Greg McNamara made it through the FINAL, squaring up to a fellow engineer who, unfortunately for Greg, made the final cut.

Teammates Pedro, Katja and Jovan scored too, with Pedro hitting the bullseye twice.

Technique was obviously a factor, although players with higher scores were noted for their beards/plaid shirts/wild eyes.

*Nobody was hurt, and we recommend Whistle Punks for Halloween.

Image of Modules being unloaded from ship at Thunder Bay Lake Superior for Alt Hotel Calgary

Superior Setting for the Arrival of Hotel Modules

6 October 2017

The completed modules for the Alt Hotel, Calgary, have finished their epic 7,000km plus journey by ship from Poland to inland Canada – from Gdansk to Thunder Bay on Lake Superior. Another 2000km by road on the Trans-Canada Highway to Calgary will see eight storeys of module installation commence, and finish before Christmas!

Image of Peter Dann staff at Newmarket Races for company social

Horsing Around / Newmarket Social / Rowley Mile Course

5 October 2017

Staff from Cambridge and London offices took to the races last Friday for Peter Dann’s annual social. This year was a more relaxed affair with no arm wrestling and access to the grandstand/paddock. Despite ill weather, fortunate bets were placed by some, while others won in spirit at the bars.

Image of Peter Dann staff at CIOB Chartered Institute of Building Gala with Ranulph Fiennes as guest speaker

CIOB Gala Dinner / Sir Ranulph Fiennes / St. Catherine’s College

18 September 2017

Last Friday we pulled on our glad rags to attend the CIOB Eastern Gala dinner at St Catherine’s College in Cambridge.

We arrived to a champagne and networking reception before following on to a delicious three course meal curated by one of the top college chefs. The after dinner speaker was the real highlight of the evening: an engaging and passionate talk by the explorer and all round mad man, Sir Ranulph Fiennes.

A fantastic time was had by all and we’re very pleased to hear the date for next year’s has already been set.

Image of Peter Dann staff playing softball in Regents Park for Engineering social

Softball or Baseball?

8 September 2017

There’s a shortage of softballs in London, but that didn’t stop team Peter Dann from enjoying their annual game with a ‘soft baseball’. Regents Park provided ample green, and with only three injuries recorded, a good time was had by most.

Image of Dalston Lane Terrace Development with Victorian style Facade and lightweight steel diaphragm

Dalston Lane Terraces, London

29 August 2017

Here’s a hot shot, literally, of our Dalston Lane development over the Bank Holiday (for those outside the U.K, it was hitting 29°).

Phases one and two can be seen side-by-side on this 90 meter long, four-storey building, providing 44 units of residential accommodation – 1, 2, 3 & 4 bed flats, together with 10 retail units totalling approximately 1029 m2 of floor space.

The structure comprises a main steel frame supported by mass concrete and reinforced concrete foundations. The roof combines a lightweight steel diaphragm and timber mansards across each of the buildings.

This project provided the opportunity to combine old and new construction techniques with the use of lime mortar in the external skin of the façade, while fully insulated light steel and plasterboard inner skins provide all the comforts of a new home.

Phase Two completion is expected at the beginning of 2018.

Elie Saab Flagship Store, Mayfair

14 August 2017

Fashion designer Elie Saab, famed for his exquisite gowns and glittering clientele, made headlines when he chose the heart of Mayfair for his flagship store.

The Grade II listed building, based on Bruton Street, is a former neo-classical townhouse featuring fluted Ionic pilasters, a staircase hall and enriched plastered ceilings. During its high-brow history the building has undergone various works, most recently its refurbishment and ultra high-end fit-out.

A complete strip-out of the existing 9,000 sq ft building was necessary for overall remedial works, waterproofing the basement and making it habitable, and refurbishment of the existing stone stairs. Peter Dann also consulted on the addition of an impressive structural light feature which spans the height of the stairwell.

Company Announcement: Ch-ch-ch-changes at Peter Dann

31 July 2017

The directors of Peter Dann Limited are pleased to announce these staff promotions and changes to our company structure:

after 12 years at the helm of Peter Dann, Guy Dolby has decided it is time to step aside as Managing Director. This will be taking effect from 31st July 2017. He will continue to be involved with the company on a consultancy basis in areas such as business development, technical appraisal and SER certification.

Since Guy became MD in 2005, the company has seen many changes but has steadily expanded with self-sustaining offices in Cambridge and London. Our client base extends across the UK and abroad. We have embraced new technologies such as 3D modelling and detailing including BIM, and are ideally placed to take on the challenges the future will bring.

His decision has helped create opportunities for the advancement of colleagues and we are pleased to announce that Ian Sargent in Cambridge and Kevin Short in London have been promoted to full board Directors of the Peter Dann Group.  John Bowstead has also been promoted to Technical Director and will assist Ian in the running of the Cambridge office.

We are also pleased to announce that Peter Chapman is taking over as Managing Director. Peter is based in our rapidly expanding London office and will be ably assisted by Kevin Short.

Further congratulations go to Ben Drake  (London) and Alan Lloyd (Cambridge) on their promotions to Associate.

Guy writes “I have had the privilege and pleasure of being a Director of Peter Dann Limited since 2001, a company I first joined from school back in 1976. I have very much enjoyed dealing with the challenges that our industry has faced during my time here.  This is in many respects due to the contacts and friendships made with clients, fellow professionals and colleagues over the years, so thank you for your support.  I am hoping this will continue over the months and years to come as we approach our 55th year of providing Civil and Structural expertise throughout the UK and overseas.”

Alt Hotel St. Johns, Canada: Progress Makes Perfect

28 July 2017

Finishing touches to the Alt hotel façade are underway under bluest of the big blue skies!

‘Let’s Get Quizzical’ in St. John’ s College Cambridge

24 July 2017

Last week we entered a team into the Chamber of Commerce Centenary Quiz Night, which was held and St John’s College in central Cambridge. Alan Lloyd and Paul Sandford of Peter Dann partnered with Mark Clarke and Alisadair Ferguson of Chadwick Dryer Clarke to form the formidable team ‘Let’s get quizzical’.

After doing battle through eight rounds of the usual sports, foods and geography, we ended up with 42.5 points landing ourselves a very respectable 4th place.

Peter Dann attend FSB London Awards Night

21 July 2017

Last night’s black-tie affair was held in the sensational Emirates Stadium. Shortlistees gathered en masse in a variety of garbs, from tux to tweed and swing to classic shift.

Roger Tilling, voiceover for University Challenge, compered the evening, announcing names and brands with all the lustrous nerve (and nervous lustre) of one who works with Jeremy Paxman.

Just over 20 categories were presented after much wine and a three course meal. Although we failed to be hailed as ultimate winners in the ‘Green Impact’ category, we’re seriously pleased to have been shortlisted; and to have ‘tied’ our ‘bows’ in the wind…


Dock Street: street style on the rise

20 July 2017

Construction has begun on the ‘Ordnance Building’, 10-20 Dock Street, a stylish mixed-use development comprising one, two and three bedroom apartments within two seven-storey blocks and one 13-storey block.  The basement and ground levels will be for commercial use.

All the contiguous pile wall and bearing piles are now complete; on site, they are currently constructing the capping beam at the top of the contiguous piled wall. It is directly adjacent to existing structures on three boundaries which required careful detailing to ensure the existing structures were not affected.

Location is prime, with Tower Hill, Aldgate East and Fenchurch Street stations nearby. Estimated completion is Q1 2019.

anyone for cricket? T20 at Lord’s for Peter Dann social

17 July 2017

The iconic Lord’s Cricket Ground was the venue for a fun-filled social evening watching T20 cricket last Thursday for Peter Dann’s London team. Plenty of laughs were had on a stunning evening, where Middlesex did their best to try and snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Perhaps we will now start playing social cricket as well as softball!

Alt Hotel, St. Johns, Canada, set to open August 2018

14 July 2017

We are pleased to announce that the new five-storey, 148 room, modular hotel will be open for guests from mid-August 2018.

This project had several significant challenges, with the site being exposed to the elements right on the North Atlantic Coast. The modules were also installed in the middle of winter surrounded by snow, which would have made a traditional construction alternative near impossible at this time of year.


Montage of Peter Dann staff bowling at Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes

peter dann bowling night: double strike!

13 July 2017

We seem to be on a roll (excuse us) when it comes to ten pin bowling. Shortly after our stint with Cooley Architects, our Cambridge office went to Tenpin at the Leisure Park for their office summer social.

The event gave everyone a good opportunity to let their hair down and flex their bowling arms as well as celebrating some recent promotions.

Overall it was a very tense competition with lots of people vying for big scores with the individual prize going to Paul Sandford, closely followed by Alan Lloyd and Guy Dolby. On the team side of things there was a little less competition with Lane 2 taking the prize with some very consistent bowling and scores across the board.

Structural engineers – you roll!

‘xanadome’ did peter dann decree… come meet our innovation!

10 July 2017

We’re pleased to add our long-span structure Xanadome to our sectors.

Xanadome, invented by Peter Dann Ltd., is a unique form of structure for enclosing large spaces. It’s system offers limitless opportunity to create attractive new forms, and no other structure performing the same function may be lighter.

Potential uses include hangers, shopping malls, refugee shelters and sports-related facilities.

Visit our sectors page to read our comprehensive Xanadome brochure.

10 storey modular hotel on the rise at calgary’s riverfront, canada

7 July 2017

Construction of a new 10 storey, 155 room, modular hotel, overlooking the Bow River in Calgary’s East Village is underway.

The Alt Hotel project involves several significant design and logistical challenges, with the site being subject to high wind and seismic loads, as well as the modules being built in Poland and shipped/trucked to the site in central inland Canada.

We are pleased to report that our structural design is complete and module fabrication has commenced for this building, comprising eight storeys of modules above a two-storey concrete podium, with three storeys of basement below.

Completion of the hotel is expected in 2018.

Peter Dann Welcomes Infrastructure Specialist Dan Martin

6 July 2017

Dan will be working within our Cambridge office as a dedicated, infrastructure Senior Engineer. This is part of Peter Dann’s business aspiration to become more strategically involved at the early stages of projects, and to broaden, strengthen and further develop in-house infrastructure capabilities.

Dan possesses an extensive portfolio of projects from the initial planning and feasibility stages through to detailed design and construction. His skills range from private and adoptable drainage design, network analysis, development of SuDS strategies, ground modelling and external level design to all aspects of highway and junction design including pavement specification, vertical/horizontal alignment and swept path analysis. He is experienced in negotiations with relevant third party stakeholders and is fully conversant with design standards and best practice for highways and drainage infrastructure.

Strategic infrastructure planning is often among the first of the engineering services many clients require, typically needed at master-planning stage. We provide a range of pre-planning services, and with drainage and highway matters taking on increased significance at this stage, growing this area of our business will allow us to provide specialist advice from a dedicated infrastructure team from the outset.

From Frames to Double-Wood: The Structure of Ten Pin Bowling

5 July 2017

Cooley Architects and Sond Construction invited key members from Peter Dann to a game of Ten Pin Bowling last week – an excellent way to catch-up outside of work.

The social was in honour of Dock Street (a high-end, high-rise project comprising residential and commercial units) and was held at the Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes, served up with rounds of pizza and beer.

Strikes were struck, ‘double wood’ was achieved (though not as much as ‘dead wood’),  with everyone having improved, somewhat, on their technique by the end of the night.

With thanks to Cooley Architects for organising.

A Royally Good Show: Scheme Proposals Exhibited for Buckingham Palace Road

3 July 2017

Gaw Capital has publically presented scheme proposals for 123-151 Buckingham Palace Road. Renderings of proposed enhancements, including the remodelling of existing sections of the building (situated over Victoria Station, Westminster) were, reportedly, well received. Planning permission will be submitted to Westminster Council in August. As structural engineers on this project, we’re hoping the process will be as easy as 1, 2, 3…