RIBA South/South East Student Mentoring Scheme – Emma Hilton-Grange

Stage 3 – BA (Hons) Architecture

RIBA South/South East’s Student Mentoring Scheme 2013/2014 Record

Session 1

Today we briefly met our mentors at the UCA Canterbury campus. I have been paired with an architect based in a London practice. We were introduced to the company and were given a taste of the work they do, and the kind of company they are. The company mainly completes high-end residential projects, both building new and refurbishing existing structures. Previously the company has also taken part in larger hotel projects in the UK and abroad. It is a medium-sized practice, with around ten members of a team made up of both interior designers and architects working together.

Our mentor brought along the project we were going to see later in our meetings, a residential project in London. It is a total refurbishment of an apartment with a partial extension. From this we got a sense of the scale and type of projects the firm completes.

We were also told about the relationships with the client and between the architect and the contractor.

From this initial meeting I am really looking forward to find out more about the project he showed us as well as learning about the processes within a practice.

Session 2

Today we travelled to the office in London to meet our mentor. It was good to see the environment that the practice was working in and the facilities they had as well as briefly meeting the team. Whilst at the office our mentor explained to us the process of obtaining jobs, as well as the financial process of how these are invoiced and at what points. Clients tend to pay much of the money before the project has actually started being built, however as explained to us this is due to the nature of an architect’s work, as much of it is undertaken prior to any construction work. We were told how the contractor goes about invoicing the client and the client- architect- contractor relationship, as the architect is to work in the best interests of the client and to check the work invoiced is done. I learnt a lot today about the actual workings of a job as well as examples of projects that don’t always go to plan