Sony have officially opened its newly built UK distribution centre, with the steel frame by Caunton Engineering, in Enfield, North London - a provider of around a quarter of the UK's home entertainment media¬ - after the original building was destroyed by fire during the London riots in Summer 2011. After rioting had spread from neighbouring Tottenham on 8 August 2011, the Sony DADC/PIAS distribution centre on the Innova Business Park was looted and destroyed by fire. Home Secretary Theresa May was shown the destroyed distribution centre by chief police officers and fire fighters on 12 August 2011.
Yet by September, 2012, Prime Minister David Cameron was opening the rebuilt warehouse, and praising Sony for its efforts in retaining local employees through utilising the original site. The new, more advanced distribution centre was built against all odds in record time in order to be fully operational with stock for the peak Christmas sales period, which accounts for 50% of annual revenue.
What a turnaround! And Caunton were at the heart of this success story.
One major reason for this speedy turnaround was that Caunton a leading steelwork design-and-build company was appointed by Riley Consulting, the managing surveyor, ahead of both the Principal Contractor, ISG, and other trade contractors. This meant that Caunton’s design team working alongside the Architect, David Turnock Architects, could plan and coordinate most details, with input from Sony UK directly, in advance of the rest of the job starting. This saved precious time on the programme. The new structure is a “bigger and better” distribution centre on the same site – two metres higher than its predecessor with an extra floor of offices and covering 24,000 square metres. The photograph shows the structure during erection. Caunton are delighted to have been of service to an iconic record producer with a record construction programme.