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Design showcase: House of Fraser at Rushden Lakes

Department store group House of Fraser has opened its most environmentally-friendly store yet, with its Rushden Lakes branch in Northamptonshire.

The store, developed by Kinnersley Kent Design, is the retailer’s first out-of-town format store, its first sustainable store, and its first full new store opening in the UK since 2008.

It complies with BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment and Management scheme) guidelines, achieving a 50 per cent reduction in its carbon footprint compared to existing House of Fraser stores of similar size.

Kinnersley Kent Design worked with House of Fraser’s in-house team on the interiors, which are lighter and brighter than previous branches. The store seeks to embrace the industrial elements of its ‘big box’ format while connecting with the natural setting of the store.

To further this aim, House of Fraser is helping to raise awareness and support protection of the local Nene Wetlands nature reserve, partnering with The Wildlife Trust BCN to provide customers with activities such as guided walks around the lakes.

Wildlife Trust illustrated wallpaper emphasises the connection.

Featuring a champagne bar and restaurant, a coffee shop and more than 50 brands over two levels, the store also has a large living wall consisting of nearly 2,000 plants running up its central atrium.

“House of Fraser at Rushden Lakes is green, local and relevant to how customers shop today,” says House of Fraser director of store development David Blakeney. “We have created something more than an ordinary department store. The team has done a great job collaboratively – we’re delighted with our new green flagship and the store is trading well above expectations.”

An exposed, open ceiling – another first for House of Fraser – employs the retailer’s black brand language through black track lighting, creating key lines that subtly divide departments. LED lighting is used throughout to reduce energy consumption.

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