Painting Reading red with fun-loving fit out

Telecommunications giant Virgin Media picked Green Park in Reading for its new state-of-the-art, multi million pound UK headquarters. The impressive 120,000 sq ft workplace for 1,500 employees is everything you’d expect from the household name: personal, fun and red.

Project partners

  • Sheppard Robson
  • CBRE
  • TCQ Surveyors
  • Elementa Consulting

Project description

The office gives Virgin Media’s staff a next generation work environment to foster inspired creativity, business growth and world-class products and services for customers. We completed the full refurbishment of all five floors to bring the brand's values and personality to life alongside a fabulous team of fit out professionals.

Improved work environment

This move and refurbishment is a big step in Virgin Media’s property investment programme, which aims to improve the quality of the company’s working environments. Its UK headquarters now embody the company’s values and corporate culture with joyful and delightful surprises incorporated in an agile working model. We did so much more than provide space for 1,200 desks, we fitted out numerous breakout areas, meeting rooms for a variety of gathering types, enviable tea points and a staff restaurant. Upholding Virgin Media’s favourite mantra to ‘build connections that really matter’ meant we focused on creating zones to boost interactions and create a sense of community, alongside dedicated wellbeing and quiet areas.

Innovative and fun fit out

Virgin Media’s brief had a strong emphasis on ‘delightfully surprising’ moments, ones which are memorable, distinctive and sprinkled throughout the building. We suspended a super-sized 800 kilogram 3D infinity loop in the atrium, against the backdrop of an oversized media wall that stretches the full height of two storeys. This whopper and distinctive brand symbol is the equivalent weight of a giraffe! And, in the restaurant, a giant disco ball adds sparkle to even the most grey winter’s day.

But behind all the fun, this workplace is also serious about sustainability. At every turn, we collaborated with the design team to ensure a sustainable fit out that reflects Virgin Media’s high standards. All of the building’s electricity comes from 100% renewable sources, smart energy-efficient lighting was installed throughout and 10 electric vehicle charging points were provided.

'Employee first' attitude

Virgin Media’s fun-loving culture also means looking after employees by meeting more than just their basic needs. We built a faith room, ‘retreat’ zone, security facility and training rooms, a yoga fitness studio as well as a telepresence room dedicated to high-end videoconferencing. And, to ensure these spaces are accessible and comfortable, we applied the same careful attention to lighting and acoustics as in other office areas.

Feel the love

There’s certainly plenty to love about this destination workplace. It’s no surprise that it won a bronze Considerate Constructors award given the company’s commitment to Reading and being good neighbours.

Virgin Media has embraced its new home completely, investing heavily in an exceptional environment for its exceptional people. After all, everyone knows the colour of love is red.

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