The Soundhouse is home to music practice rooms, a percussion rehearsal room and recording studios. We collaborated on this innovative and highly unique project with Carey Jones Architects, carrying out the detailed design, working drawings and site supervision. The project was as technically challenging as it was highly innovative in terms of both the cladding and the internal fit out.

Black rubber and stainless steel combine, creating the external envelope. Huge 1/2 tonne sheets of vulcanised "rubber" were fixed over the structure with stainless steel studs to create a quilted affect that conveys the buildings well insulated qualities.

To satisfy the stringent acoustic requirements, all connections of the building fabric had to be acoustically isolated. The internal partitions were planned out on acute angles to minimise reverberation times. The interiors include highly sculptural acoustic forms mounted on the walls to provide varying acoustic conditions.

The design concept is of European origin and is the first time it has been used in the UK as a combined roofing and cladding material.

The Soundhouse was shortlisted for a National Federation of Roofing Contractors Limited's (NFRC) Annual Excellence in Roofing Award. The finalists were selected based on demonstrated quality workmanship, technical difficulties encountered, problem solving, environmental qualities and aesthetics.

“From the outset this project was always going to be technically challenging as it was highly innovative in terms of both the cladding and internal fit out. The building required intricate detailing at every stage; internally to meet the demanding acoustic requirements following through externally to the unique envelope of the Soundhouse using a construction method never before used in the UK. The detailing has gone a long way to providing the University with the 21st Century flagship building which they envisaged when they approved the original design concept.”

Tom Rhys Jones, Managing Director, Jefferson Sheard Architects


  • Higher Education


The University of Sheffield / Kier

450 m²

Sheffield, UK

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