Organised by Oxford Branch of the Campaign for real Ale (CAMRA) along with our very own Matthew Bullock this year’s Oxford Beer And Cider Festival looks like it will be another great success. Gray Baynes & Shew very successfully  hosted an evening of restrained and educated beer tasting for colleagues and friends of the office on Thursday evening.

A choice of 140 real ales and over 60 real ciders from across the United Kingdom were sampled in the sumptuos interior of the recently restored Oxford Town Hall (built in 1897 to a design by architect Henry T Hare).

It was a very enjoyable evening and all our guests went away with a commemorative beer glass.


Two down one to go! We have almost finished refurbishing the Boys WC’s, Science Laboratories and the Drama Department’s green room for Magdalen College School in Oxford.

The toilets had a complete overhaul with new finishes, ceilings and fittings. The labs received new flooring and fitted furniture to meet the latest standards and the drama department is being completely revived by opening up their green room and decorating all areas. Over the coming week we will be adding built-in storage to the drama department to contain all their props and costumes, and a folding partition to the green room so it can double up as changing rooms when the school have a production on.

The works were a last minute appointment in the summer holidays and we have worked closely with the contractors and the school to hand the spaces back with as little disruption as possible. 

Boys WC Before and After
Boys WC Before and After
Drama WC Before and After
Green Room Before and After

We are delighted to welcome Kristy Jones to our office. Kristy joined Gray Baynes + Shew as Office Administrator over the summer and is a great addition to our front-of-house team. Kristy has previously worked at 740 Designs having moved from Australia to England in March. So, for a friendly Australian hello telephone the office on 01865 305130.


The £1.2m re-roofing and internal refurbishment of North Block, the English Department at Marlborough College, Wiltshire is nearing completion.

The project involved completely re-roofing the C19th Listed Building to address roof leaks and also major repairs to failing brickwork on the façade. The brickwork has also been repointed in a more suitable lime mortar and cleaned.

The building now has new wiring, plumbing, heating and mechanical ventilation to ensure students have a comfortable environment in which to study.

As part of an ongoing phased project across two years, four of the classrooms have been completely refurbished including repairs to original casement leaded windows and new conservation style secondary glazing to address issues of heat loss and noise from the adjacent road disturbing teaching.

Classrooms have been refitted with new furniture, fixings and carpets to complement the existing historic interiors.

The project was time critical with works programmed to be completed over the summer break to avoid disruption to the College. The design team, contractor and client have worked closely together to complete the works in this phase allowing teaching staff to reoccupy their classrooms ready for the new term.

Marlborough corridor
Marlborough external
Marlborough classroom

We attended the Press Night for the ‘other’ Creation Theatre summer show in the beautiful gardens of St Hugh’s College. Not unusually for this theatre company this is a unique production and marks the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’. The performance starts almost imperceptibly with actors moving among the audience and continues around the gardens between scenes and settings. With the sun gradually going down, birds singing and the occasional flock of geese flying over the production takes on a magical quality. Highly recommended we think!

Tea Party