Shape East is proud to run a variety of diverse and ever-changing events, encouraging professionals, local authorities, schools and communities to "make better places". To find out more information about any of our past events, including images, quotes and downloadable presentations, please follow the links below.

2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 2008  |  2007  |  2006  |  2005  | 2004  | 2003 |
2013 events  
Kettles Yard

Space Makers 2013: Architectural Drawing

Architect Simon Carne looked at design and architectural drawing in Kettle's Yard with our enthusiastic group of Primary School level space makers. The workshop was run as part of an ongoing educational project run by Kettle's Yard, Cambridge and supported by Shape East.


Gallery Exhibition and Guided Tours

In January 2013, Shape East will be holding an exhibition of artwork, design, wordart and poetry from their new walking tour: Walking with Women. Including a launch night of poetry performance and two guided tours held each day over the fortnight, we hope to help residents and tourists alike beat the January blues and learn a little more about the female side to Cambridge's bricks and mortar.

2012 events  

Green Screens

SHAPE East have been working with Swavesey Village College students and families to develop an understanding of how architecture and the built environment impacts upon our communities.


Designing Places for Real People

Designing Places for Real People was an evening talk to introduce local communities and professionals to masterplanning, street and shared space design as well as what sustainability really means for smaller communities.

The Historic Environment and Sustainable Futures

This afternoon Masterclass, run as part of Peterborough's HLF funded Buildings in Need project, focused on understanding the assessment of significance within the historic environment.

Space Makers 3: The Expansion of Kettle's Yard (March):
Demolition, Deconstruction and Digging

The Space Makers Project follows the building of a new education wing at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge over a 2 year period. This month Shape East chose professionals Alison Dickens and Mark Foley to lead sessions on the demolition process and the history of what lay beneath the Kettle's Yard buildings.

Space Makers 2: The Expansion of Kettle's Yard (Jan): Construction and Materials

The Space Makers Project follows the building of a new education wing at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge over a 2 year period. This month, Shape East contributers Simon Smith and Richard Eastham provided a professional and creative perspective on construction techniques and building materials.

2011 events

Kettles Yard

Space Makers 1: The Expansion of Kettle's Yard (Nov)

The Space Makers Project follows the building of a new education wing at Kettle's Yard, Cambridge over a 2 year period. Shape East will be working with Kettle's Yard, two local schools and two public and community artists to deliver a creative education and consultation programme focused on the design, construction and use of these new spaces.


Outpost Project: The Re-Use of Industrial Sites >>

Shape East's interest in the adaptive re-use of historic places and spaces led us to visit Sydney's former industrial beacon, Cockatoo island, as this former imperial prison, industrial school, reformatory and gaol bloomed with some of the most inspirational international street art collections of 2011.


International Art: Sculpture by the Sea >>

In November 2011, Shape East artist Hollie McNish attended the opening ceremony of Sydney, Australia's most renowned collection of public artwork in the annual Sculpture by the Sea exhibition.


Caring for Places of Worship>>

This seminar, funded by English Heritage held in March brought together over 60 delegates including church groups and people caring for places of worship. The day included expert presentations from English Heritage and Ecclesiastical Insurance and included a walking tour and practical workshop at St Mary's Church, Newmarket (pictured left).


River Rhymes and Voices >>

The River Rhymes and Voices project was an HLF funded project which took a number of young people to explore local riverside histories through tours, talks and spoken word arts workshops.

To view the full project report, please click here


Managing Change in Historic Places >>

This seminar, funded by English Heritage was held at Breckland Council in February and focused on the role that the historic environment plays within the planning process. The day included expert presentations and an opportunity to trial a Local Character Area Assessment Toolkit, using two local sites as case studies.


People and their Historic Places >>

This seminar, funded by English Heritage brought together over 60 delegates including Community Groups, Design and Heritage Champions, Planning and Conservation Officers, elected Members for a day of presentations from English Heritage and Oxford City Council aimed at helping communities to look after their local heritage.


Design Review

Design Review Roadshows>>

Shape East has carried out a series of Design Review roadshows to raise awareness of the Design Review process and to disseminate key lessons learnt from previous reviews in the region. These have been held in Kings lynn, East Herts, Colchester, Luton and Suffolk. A summary leaflet of key lessons learned from the roadshows is available here >>
To see case studies from previous reviews in the region, please click here >>

2010 events

stopping the rot

Stopping the Rot >>

This seminar, funded by English Heritage brought otgether over 40 delegates including Building Preservation Trusts, Design and Heritage Champions, Planning and Conservation Officers, elected Members and Legal professionals for a day of presentations by experts from English Heritage to explore best practice in protecting vulnerable heritage assets.      



Working Churches: Adapting to Changing Times >>

This seminar, funded by English Heritage brought together over 60 church staff, Design and Heritage Champions, conservation Officers and elected Members and provided an inspirational day for those involved in the adaptation of working church buildings


Place Making Challenges: Integrated Approaches >>

The fifth in our series of good practice seminars held both in Basildon and Ely explored the issues surrounding the sensitive issue of car parking and car parkng standards. Once again we had some fantastic speakers who fuelled some lively debates on the subject.


Spotting Quality Design >>

The last in our series saw delegates brave the elements in Chelmsford for a walking tour of exemplar design schemes looking at the importance of quality design. The day also included some inspirational lectures on why design matters and low energy affordable housing.

2009 events

recent events

Climate Change and Historic Buildings >>

This seminar, held in the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds and funded by English Heritage, brought together over 60 delegates to explore the highly important built environment issues developing due to climate changes. The day comprimised a number of fantastic speakers and discussion points.


Expert-Led Tour of the BRE Innovation Park >>

The BRE Innovation Park Visit was the fourth in our series of 6 seminars open to Local Authority Officers and Councillors in the Eastern region. Shape East organised a trip to the world renowned BRE innovation park, leading over 60 delegates in coaches from both Ely and Basildon to this inspiration site in Watford.

Councillors' Skills Training: The Myth of Density >>

This training seminar, entitled 'Making New Developments Work: The Myth of Density: Bikes, Bins and other Challenges!' was the final of our four part training series for Councillors in the East of England. We would like to thank all those who have attended the series, it has been a great success.

Young People's Community Consultation  >>

Over three days in December, Shape East ran a workshop and community consultation at Queen’s Hills Junior School, Norfolk. This included two-days of model-making, map reading and site visits with the primary school pupils and a one-day community feedback and consultation focused specifically on a new community centre planned for the area.

Delivery through the Downturn >>

The current climate has had dramatic impacts on the development industry. This seminar, the third in our series of 6 training seminars, explored the central issues surrounding the future of the development industry with a great selection of highly engaging and topical speakers.

Councillors' Building for Life and Accordia Tour >>

Building for Life was the third in our series of four skills development seminars for Councillors in the region. It allowed Councillors to both learn from and put into practice the CABE Building for Life criteria, using a site tour of the Accordia development to this purpose.

Masterplanning: Translating the Vision into Practice >>

The second in our series of 6 training seminars, held in both Basildon and Ely, brought together delegates from over 25 local authorities to explore design codes, how to build character and identity and how to get the most from your masterplanning.

Councillors' Introduction to Urban Design  >>

Held in Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge and designed specifically for Councillors involved in the delivery of places and the improvement of design quality, this ‘Introduction to Urban Design’ was the second in our series of four skills development seminars for Councillors in the region.

Masterplanning: The Key Issues >>

The first in our series of 6 training seminars, held in both Basildon and Ely, gave delegates an exciting opportunity to listen to some leading experts on masterplanning, eco-developments and how we can learn from our European neighbours.

Managing Change in Urban and Rural Historic Landscapes >>

This seminar, held in the beautiful setting of Her Majesty the Queen's Royal Estate, Sandringham, saw delegates explore the role of the historic environment in the planning process, the threats to these landscapes and the importance of preserving them.

Councillors' Consultation: Improving Quality of Place >>

This first in a series of four skills development seminars for Eastern region Councillors provided Members with an interest in Urban design to influence CABE's advice for Councillors' on Improving Quality of Place.

To view this seminar's related case study, 'Developer Contributions in the Recession', please click here.

Responding to Context: Managing Change in Historic Places >>

This Building in Context workshop focused on the proposed King's Lynn Baker St / Queens St car park development to explore the role that the historic environment plays within the planning process.

Building for Life Assessor Training Day >>

Cambridge’s central Guildhall provided a great setting for the eastern region Building for Life assessor seminar, training over 20 local authorities in using Building for Life as an assessment tool.


Young people's Community Consultation >>

Shape East completed a one day hands-on workshop with year 8 pupils at the Charles Burrell Humanities School in Thetford. The day focused on planning, good design and community resources.


Reclaiming the Public Realm in Historic Towns >>

Taking place at the beautiful Old Town Hall Theatre, Hemel Hempstead, this one day seminar provided an exploration of the use of public space in historic towns in the UK and Europe.


Ely Masterplan: A Series of Three Technical Workshops for Stakeholders >>

Shape East was commissioned by East Cambridgeshire District Council to develop three visions for the future of Ely. We held three stakeholder workshops for landowners and others to develop the Ely Masterplan and produced a public exhibition of the ideas produced. 


Building in Context: A Town Centre (and Riverside) Development in Historic Thetford >>

This fourth Building in Context workshop focused on the proposed bus station development to explore the practical ways to help deliver better designed and more sustainable development.


New (Secular) Uses for Old Churches >>

This seminar, held in the wonderful surroundings of Norwich Arts Centre,provided an exploration of the key considerations impacting the new use of redundant churches.


A New Way of Life? The Truth about Zero-Carbon Living >>

This seminar painted a picture of what it would be like to live in a zero-carbon future and how we might think about achieving this.

2008 events

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Home Run

'The Home Run' for the Great Eastern Run >>

Led by an artist/architect/structural engineer dream team, this pilot project involved community groups in designing and building a celebratory, temporary, faux structure along the route of the Great Eastern run. The structure celebrates and reflects the ethnicity and interests of the host communities.

Changing Places

Changing Places: Working with Young People in Cambridge and Peterbrough >>

Young People from Peterborough and Cambridge have been taking part in ‘Changing Places’ one of Shape’s future heritage projects. Participants have been exploring the hidden meanings encapsulated in their familiar local environment, and recording their memories, feelings and hopes for the future.

The Big Draw

Student Design Competition 2008 >>

Local Architects met with teachers at the William Gates Building in July to discuss the brief for the competition. The judges have made their decisions and results can be seen here.


The Environmental Sustainability of Old Buildings >>

This seminar provided an opportunity to explore the current issues surrounding climate change and its impact on buildings built before 1920.


Examining the Regeneration Strategies of England's Coastal Resorts >>

The English seaside is set for a renaissance.’ — Hazel Blears, Communities Secretary


Evaluation Good Design Conference and Heritage Champion's Network Event>>

‘Good design is both a creative process and an outcome. It is about more than iconic, big budget projects in the same way that sustainability is about more than the mechanics of carbon reduction’.


Green Buildings in Norfolk - CPRE Open Days >>

15 properties, all of which have eco-features:- such as solar panels, ground source heat pumps, wind turbines, rainwater harvesting or hydro-turbines.


The Shape Summer Lecture with Piercy Conner Architects and Designers >>

What is context and how should architecture respond to it?


The Impact of Growth on our Rural Heritage >>

This tour and seminar explored the effectiveness of past solutions of building expansion in villages. It looked at examples of new developments to consider how they harmonised with the rural historic environment.


Creative Industries and Sustainable >>

A one day seminar examining the regenerative impact of creative industries’ studio developments.


Building in Context:
Considering Retail Development in Historic Town Centres >>

Part of a series of events aimed at local officers and Design and Historic Environment Champions, this event considered the Grand Arcade, a new retail development in the heart of the historic city centre of Cambridge.


Building in Context:
Analysing Successful High Density Housing >>

Rob Cowan, nationally renowned commentator on urban design led this training event to analyse Accordia, the Building for Life award winning scheme based in Cambridge.


An Introduction to Urban Design with Rob Cowan >>

A series of 3 seminars held for local authority Planning Officers and Councillors throughout the region. These seminars were aimed at those faced with making major decisions about development and change in their built environment.

2007 events

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2012 and Beyond: Sustainable masterplanning for the Olympic site >>

Shape East Trustee, Bob Allies of Allies and Morrisson fame delivered this year’s hugely popular Christmas lecture to professionals and students. Click here to read an overview.

Zero Carbon

Ramsey College: Zero Carbon Project >>

Students from Abbey College worked with a range of built environment professionals to develop their own proposals for a development site in Ramsey, which they then took out to public consultation.

Shock of the New Seminar >>

A seminar held in conjunction with English Heritage to explore best practice of modern contemporary design in the historic setting.

Learning by Design Open Day >>

Shape East hosted the Learning by Design Open Day for the East of England, which was held at the newly completed South East Essex College. Open House coordinated the series of Open Days as part of this programme, which is sponsored by the Department for Education and Skills.

Making Neighbourhoods Workshop >>

Shape East and seventy Year 3 pupils from Milton Road Junior School spent a creative day in April thinking about their neighbourhood and the links to the new development at Arbury Park.

SmartLIFE Schools Workshops >>

Shape recently completed another successful round of workshops to secondary schools across Cambridgeshire, engaging pupils in the challenges of housing delivery in growth areas – affordability, sustainability/energy efficiency and skills/capacity shortages in the construction industry.

Papworth Everard Community Consultation >>

Shape-East recently worked in partnership with 5th Studio Architects to run an innovative and participatory community consultation process that will be the basis of a masterplan for Papworth Everard.

Delivering High Quality Public Art in Cambridge >>

A one day seminar. Nearly 50 Local Authority Officers and Members, Arts Organisations and Artists attended. Organised by Shape East on behalf of Cambridgeshire Horizons.

How Places Work >>

How Places Work is a CABE initiative in partnership with the Architecture Centre Network. It is a programme of educational visits to contemporary inspirational buildings and public spaces for school children.

Daniel Libeskind and Cambridge Architecture Punt Tours >>

This was a one off invitation to the public to join Daniel Libeskind, the world famous architect, in conversation with Peter Carl on Thursday 12 July, as part of the International Conference 'In Evidence-witnessing cities and the case of Berlin ' .

Shape's New Ecohouse Debuts at Cambridge >>

The Ecohouse was shown for the first time at The Grafton Centre Cambridge on 8th and 9th January 2007.

2006 events

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The Shape Built Environment Christmas Lecture >>

Sarah Wigglesworth spoke to an audience of over one hundred built environment professionals and sixth formers at Shape East’s Annual Christmas Lecture held on 27 November 2006 at The Leys Music School, Cambridge.

Introduction to Urban Design >>

A Workshop for Local Authority Councillors and Officers, December 7th 2006.

Demystifying Sustainable Construction >>

Local Authority Members, Registered Social Landlords and Tenant Representatives from Cambridge and the sub regions attended an event at the Building Research Establishment in Watford looking at sustainable construction

How Places Work >>

How Places Work is a CABE initiative in partnership with the Architecture Centre Network. It is a programme of educational visits to buildings and public spaces for school children. During November and December 2006 young people from schools in the region visited Great Yarmouth Power Station and Cambridge University.

2005 events

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Urban Splash in Cambridge >>

Patrick Sheridan spoke about the work of Urban Splash to professionals and a 6th Form audience on 14th March 2005.

Homes take Shape >>

As part of Architecture Week 2005, Shape presented Organic Houses workshops for Primary children in Cambridge and the surrounding region..

The Design and Historic Environment Champions Network Inaugural Event >>

The initial event provided a mix of formal presentations by expert speakers, a networking lunch and afternoon breakout sessions to discuss issues that Champions faced and what training they would find useful in the future.

High Density: High Quality? >>

Design & Historic Environment Champions Network for Local Authority Officers and Members 18th January 2005.

2004 events

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shapeWALKS >>

shape's free web-based walking guides to Cambridge were launched in the Tourist Information Centre in Cambridge on 21st October 2004.

Total Design >>

Professionals from across the East of England region attended shape's seminar exploring aspects of the design process from the perspectives of the architect, commissioning client and occupying end-user.

Environmental living: putting ‘dreams’ of the future into practice >>

Community group Enlinca collaborate with local architects to realise their vision for a better way of living.

Creative Spaces - Netherhall competes for £50,000 >>

Students from Netherhall School & Sixth Form College, Cambridge worked on a submission for the Construction Industry Training Board’s national ‘Creative Spaces’ design competition for 9-14 year-olds. Jan - March 2004.

2003 events

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Housing Design Awards Case Study Event >>

Architects, house builders, developers and local planning authorities from across the East of England region attended a seminar to investigate and learn from a new housing scheme in Cambridge. GO East, December 2003.

Place Making Workshop >>

Twenty-three Year 9 students collaborated with six members of Cambridge City Council’s Environment & Planning department during a workshop at Netherhall School & Sixth Form College, Cambridge. November 2003

First shapeTALK >>

To help devise and launch an on-going programme of “shapeTALKS”, engineers, architects and academics met on October 31st 2003, at Cambridge University’s Martin Centre,

The shapeHOUSE >>

Recently seen at the Grafton Centre, Cambridge, the shapeHOUSE is a special exhibition project touring Cambridge and the surrounding region.