Grant Thornton opens new Reading location

30 November 2021 Consultancy.uk 4 min. read
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As it continues to invest in the Thames Valley region, professional services firm Grant Thornton has moved to a fresh location in the heart of Reading. The new facility is equipped to support in-office collaboration, as well as supporting new hybrid working models which have become more common during the pandemic.

2021 has seen a flurry of consulting industry activity in the Thames Valley region. With a large proportion of the local client base having international operations, the area offers a lucrative opportunity to pick up global projects, while also being close enough to London to pick up work from Europe’s leading financial hub. As a result, a succession of firms have been investing in the Thames Valley, including Interpath Advisory, BDO, Quantuma, EY and Grant Thornton.

With offices in Oxford, Reading and Southampton, Grant Thornton’s Thames Valley and Southampton wing is home to more than 320 experts. The group delivers tailored, quality audit, tax and advisory solutions to businesses and management teams across the region. Catering to entrepreneurial, privately-owned, private equity-backed clients, and large corporate entities, including a number of listed clients, the local team has extensive experience in offering support in all areas.

Grant Thornton opens new Reading location

As the firm continues to bolster its Thames Valley business, the firm has moved its Reading office to a new, prime location. The base at One Valpy, in the central business district of the city, marks Grant Thornton’s continued focus in Reading and follows the firm relocating to a state-of the-art collaborative workplace in Oxford in September.

Jim Rogers, Practice Leader for Grant Thornton in Thames Valley, noted that while the move deepens the firm’s commitment to Reading, where it has “many long standing clients and connections,” it also sees it adapt to the new model of post-pandemic working. With thinking around workspace having changed drastically in the last two years, the firm sought to create “a hugely attractive and inclusive environment where people will want to be...”

Rogers went on, “We believe the office space is where our culture comes alive and it is the beating heart of Grant Thornton. Our new space allows for quiet working, collaboration and mentorship. But it’s predominately a creative space. If people are sat at desks all day and not engaging with each other, they might as well be at home. So this about an environment that will draw us together so we have can start to have those valuable conversations again.”

Designed by Peldon Rose, the Reading workspace incorporates feedback and insight from across the local Grant Thornton team, with everyone from trainees to partners consulted before the vision was brought to life. Looking to boost social, collaborative and focused working, in practical terms, the office has meeting rooms configured in such a way that anyone joining virtually is highly visible, audible and engaged with in-person participants – helping to encourage hybrid working. At the same time, it includes soundproofed areas, and more creative and collaborative spaces, which help to cater to different working styles in the business.

Georgia Nogas, Senior Project Designer at Peldon Rose, which also designed Grant Thornton’s new Oxford office, remarked, “During the design process, we wanted to ensure we created offices that brought all generations of the workforce together, attracting experienced people back into the office and also helping new entrants into the company understand the business’ ethos… We worked closely with the Peldon Rose team to embody Grant Thornton’s values of diversity, excellence and agility and we couldn’t be more pleased with the final design.”

Looking ahead, the 7,851 square feet layout will help Grant Thornton’s Thames Valley and Southampton team work flexibly across One Valpy in Reading, Sea Court Tower in Oxford and Benham 5 on the University of Southampton Science Park. All offices are easily accessible by public transport and have design continuity for those who split their time between the offices.