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Allison Pike Completes 25th Development for Expanding Barracuda Group

12-18-2007 05:14 PM CET | Industry, Real Estate & Construction

Press release from: Allison Pike

18 December 2007 – Architectural and interior design specialist the Allison Pike Partnership has completed its 25th project for the Barracuda Group – the £1m development of a new Varsity bar in the centre of Newbury, Berkshire.

The fastest growing national managed pub company in the UK, the award-winning Barracuda Group owns brands including Smith & Jones Pub, Varsity, Barracuda Bar, Juniper and the latest Cape label. Allison Pike first worked with the Group in 2004, and since than has designed for many of the Barracuda brands, with the latest project taking it to the landmark quarter century.

Initially conceived as a brand for University towns, the success of Varsity has led the Barracuda Group to extend it to new locations, with Newbury the first to feature a more sophisticated style and interior design.

The 850m² development is located in a converted retail unit on Bartholomew Street and combines a large bar, together with raised booth seating, informal dining areas and a dance floor with DJ console. The customer area is in excess of 4,500ft² and features recessed frontages to the street, creating external seating areas with folding shopfronts. Allison Pike designed and supervised the full conversion from its previous use as a retail unit.

The focal point of the Newbury Varsity is the bar area, with minimalist design of the backfitting display units ensuring the focus is maintained on the products and graphics, with sleek, built in LCD TV screens creating interest through the day. Neutral colours have been used throughout to ensure a light, more stylish feel to reflect the development of the brand.

Lighting has also been used to maximum effect, with colour change LED neon designed into ceiling troughs, to give a constantly changing mood to the bar zone. The lighting system can produce an infinite variety of colours, enabling synchronised colour change through the day and supporting different themes.

Steve Price, Property Director for the Barracuda Group, said: “The premises in Newbury are set in a fantastic location, so we needed a design that would sit well in the High Street and have a wide appeal. The team at Allison Pike have a strong understanding of our brand and what we need from our properties and they have successfully developed Varsity in Newbury to have a more high quality feel that reflects the location.”

The project took 15 weeks to complete from the commencement of on-site work, with Allison Pike overseeing activity through to the Autumn launch.

Mark Allison, director of the Allison Pike Partnership, added: “This is our 25th project for the Barracuda Group so is a landmark in our relationship with them. It has also given us a new challenge, developing the successful Varsity brand to reflect demand in a new location, with the end result providing a strong draw for customers day and night.”

For more information contact –
T: 01625 511966

Images are available from the following links –,%20Newbury%20-%20design%20by%20Allison%20Pike.jpg

About Allison Pike
Allison Pike Architects and Designers is a leading architectural and interior design practice based in the North West. Founded in 1984, Allison Pike provides design solutions for commercial, public and private clients in sectors including hospitality, leisure, commercial and residential. For more information visit

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