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Inspired shortlisted for two First-Time Buyer Readers’ Awards

Fabrick in Cheadle Hulme was shortlisted in the First-Time Buyer Readers’ Awards for Most Innovative Redevelopment of an Existing Property with Innova in Croydon shortlisted for Best Show Home.

Fabrick in Cheadle Hulme was shortlisted in the First-Time Buyer Readers’ Awards for Most Innovative Redevelopment of an Existing Property with Innova in Croydon shortlisted for Best Show Home. Now in their 10th year, the First Time Buyer Readers’ Awards are one of the biggest awards in the industry, recognising companies helping first-time buyers get on to the property ladder.

How to vote

Voting for the awards goes live today (Friday, 1 February) and closes on Friday, 12 April. These awards are entirely decided by the Readers! Simply click to cast your vote. The results will be announced on Friday, 26 April at The Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square in London, where industry professionals will come together to find out the winners and highly commended of the 18 categories.


The Most Innovative Redevelopment of an Existing Property category looks for properties that have been redeveloped using fresh ideas that uphold the integrity of the original building and make best use of the retained features and surroundings.

With a name inspired by Cheadle Hulme’s brick and fabric making heritage, Fabrick is a groundbreaking new development of 184 one and two-bedroom micro-apartments, converting an unloved 1960s office building into stylish new homes for first-time buyers.

Following a design by Falconer Chester Hall Architects, specialist office-to-residential contractor headoffice3 were tasked with converting the derelict 7,614 sq m (81,956 sq ft), six-storey building, vacant since 2011, into high quality residential accommodation featuring a high internal specification and all-new façade. The façade, comprising a contrast of black and beige brick slip with blue and grey EWI/mineral wool rendered cladding, ensures the conversion complements local building stock whilst providing a stylish new look that buyers can proudly show off to friends and family.

The apartments feature engineered wood flooring; white gloss soft-close kitchen units with granite worktops and integrated Bosch appliances; ceramic sanitaryware with designer taps and large-format ceramic tiles; and useful technology including Nest Learning thermostats that can control heating remotely from a Smart phone and 1GB Hyperoptic broadband, the UK’s fastest.

Shared social spaces in the form of a rooftop terrace and basement club lounge have been added to offer Community Living to young professionals looking for a city lifestyle in a laid-back Cheshire location. A major coup for first-time buyers, four Bernd Spiecker designed LightBenches have been ordered for the terrace. These uber-cool benches change colour from blues and reds to greens and purples and have featured in public squares in major cities throughout Europe including London, Istanbul and Berlin. The terrace will also include dining and lounge zones.

View a video of Fabrick


The Best Show Home award goes to the company with the best show home allowing the buyer to see the property to its maximum potential, giving them a realistic insight into their new home.

Innova is a new development in Croydon comprising 197 one and two-bedroom micro-apartments with a further 29 one, two and three-bedroom apartments and duplexes on the top floors – the Nova Collection. Innova offers first-time buyers a new dimension in urban living with hallway-free interiors and a high-end specification that includes granite kitchen worktops, Hansgrohe taps, Villeroy & Boch sanitaryware and hardwood engineered floors. There is also useful tech in the form of a Learning Thermostat by Nest and Hyperoptic, the UK’s fastest broadband.

At just 30 square metres, the show home represents our smallest micro-apartment at Innova and the hardest to furnish. Local Croydon-based interior stylist Sarah Akwisombe, in her early thirties, targets buyers of a similar demographic, late millennials between 25 and 35, tapping into the ‘Cronx’ vibe, creating a young, fresh space that turns the concept of a traditional developer show apartment on its head.

Her brief was to design a space that is bright, eclectic and edgy as well as functional, maximising every square inch in of 30 square metres available. She was handed a budget of £8,000 (incl. VAT) and instructed to source items that were accessible and affordable for first-time buyers, with about 90% hailing from high street shops. To help buyers imagine themselves living there, she was asked to dress the entire apartment from beds and drapes through to hand soaps in the bathroom and clothes in the wardrobe.

View a video of Sarah’s installation

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