Five minutes with Andy Clarke, Associate Design Director
A lot of work goes on behind the scenes here at Countryside and this month we’ve been speaking to Andy Clarke from our Design Department to give you a taste of the creative thinking behind our homes…
How did you get into your role?
It was a bit of a fluke! I studied at Sheffield City Polytechnic but graduated from Sheffield Hallam University as it became during my time there.
After graduation I started working for Bryant Homes and really enjoyed working in the housing industry especially on new-build properties and developments due to the variety of schemes I had involvement with. Ten years ago I was offered a position at Countryside through someone I knew back in my Bryant days.
What do you love about your job?
Each day I have the opportunity to be creative, which is amazing. What I love the most is working on the drawing board to produce new housing developments. It’s incredible to see a development come to life – from the initial concept in your head to the development being built. To know that you’ve been an integral part of transforming an unused, and often unattractive, piece of land into an attractive housing development is a great feeling.
What’s your typical day like?
There’s no such thing! It really depends on what you’re working on. Usually I’m working on the drawing board designing developments and producing structure plans – this includes establishing where the properties will be positioned to maximize value. For example, if the site has stunning views of the surrounding countryside, then we’ll make sure that we use it to the advantage of future homeowners.
What has been your biggest challenge?
The planning stages of a development can sometimes be tough. This is when we’re ironing out the finer details by engaging with local residents and councils to get everyone involved. We’ve done a lot of regeneration work in recent years, which have each delivered incredible results. These schemes not only improve the area but can also help create close-knit communities. In fact, we’ve taken home the gold a few times at industry awards for both our NGV Liverpool and New Broughton Village developments.
What would you be doing if you didn’t work for Countryside?
When I was younger I wanted to be a cartoonist because I love to draw – that’s partly where my interest in architecture and buildings stems from. If I wasn’t working in this industry, then I could see myself in California working for Pixar!
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