Case Study

JMBS PLC Office Design and Build




12 weeks


46,000 sq ft


Milton Keynes


JMBS UK is a leading independent provider of flexible battery solutions for demanding automotive applications. Ranging from electrochemistry and engineering consultancy through to volume production. JMBS is a subsidiary business of Johnson Matthey PLC and sits in its incubator for new business division, focusing on new and emerging technologies.

Originally based in Dundee Scotland, following a strategic business plan, JMBS knew that to keep pace with the growth of the organisation, they needed to be based closer to the Automotive Tech sector in the UK, in order to find the right level of quality engineers they needed to meet their medium and long terms objectives.

After an intensive property search in and around the Milton Keynes region (which took longer than anticipated and 13 building viewings later!) – the team at JMBS managed to secure the perfect building to meet their needs, which was a 46,000 square feet space, part office / part warehouse space which had the potential to be converted to the high quality lab/ production facility that they required.

This building which had previously been occupied by a blue chip camera manufacturer, had been empty for an extended period of time and was essentially a blank Cat A space ready for JMBS to engage with a Design and Build contractor, to design a facility tailored to suit their needs.

Client Brief

Complete design and build of the office and production space, including a complex M&E package, extensive structural alteration in order to form the E-Chem laboratory including a “back to the grid” facility on the incoming power supply for occasions where batteries are discharged back into the mains system.

The most challenging aspect of this project was the timescale from which Officescape where originally involved in the project to the occupation date of the office and E-Chem lab testing facility which were hard deadlines. Some of the battery testing which takes place in this facility takes years in its cycle and can only be shut down with very minimal downtimes.

The client was also merging 3 separate offices, Royston, Coventry and Dundee together in Milton Keynes – so with a lease coming to an end on the main facility in Scotland, the move date into the new Milton Keynes building couldn’t be compromised.

From point of instruction, Officescape started on site within 3 weeks and met the very challenging deadline, getting the client in on time and bringing the project in on budget.

This project included:

  • Complete design and build solution
  • Full design package (including M&E design and an L2 fire alarm system) which required client sign off at every stage– all passed in record time with only minor amendments required!
  • Full strip out of existing power and data and electrical upgrade through the complete facility, including installation of a “back to the grid” system on the incoming mains for the discharge from the battery testing.
  • Toilet refurbishments, including building completely new facility with showers etc in the production area
  • E-Chem lab design and fitout, including structural strengthening and additional screed pumped into the floor to increase floor heights and take the weight of the lab equipment.
  • New build server / comms room with fire suppression system
  • New internal jumbo walls to separate internal production space from the warehousing/ stores, including hi-speed roller shutter doors.
  • Protected walkways in the production space and “client viewing” areas.
  • External landscaping and lighting, including new charging point facilities for staff/ client electric vehicles.
  • Kitchens, T-points, full internal double glazed partition system throughout the office areas, office furniture throughout.
  • Staff canteen/ breakout area centrally positioned in the space.

"I found [Officescape] to be a very professional organisation. Very safety focused and have a huge amount of horsepower to get the job done in a very short amount of time."

Will Grocott, Programme Director

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