Our project story

Lakeside Shopping Centre.

West Thurrock, Essex, UK


The UK’s finest retail soundscape.

Unique seasonable flexibility.
Immersive audio for retail & leisure.

Challenge accepted.

West Thurrock, Grays, UK
Lakeside is one of the UK’s most popular shopping destinations, with 20-million yearly visitors. During the last four years it has been extensively redeveloped and, with the help of our Audiovisual team, transformed into an immersive retail destination that is ready to open its doors once more.

Featured Content Section

Lakeside has a legacy to uphold. This project saw the dated space transformed into a modern and fun destination.
Kevin Luckhurst, Senior Associate, Hoare Lea

The new benchmark.

We needed to create a soundscape system that enhanced customer experience. We had to design from first principals, learning, experimenting, and innovating as we progressed. We used a combination of small loudspeakers and programmable, schedulable, immersive audio components. Our biggest challenge was producing and composing the music and sound design. As the end result could only be tested and understood on site, a trial and error process was needed to ensure every nuance was heard.

No stone unturned.

To begin, we needed to better understand Lakeside’s customers and social areas. We imagined ourselves in the space, listening to the sound around us and focusing on how we reacted, as simulating the design using VR was less accessible at that time (2017). We looked to other industries like theatre for support and studied how it uses sound and light to stimulate an emotive response from audiences. The lessons learnt guided our positioning of the entire soundscape. Several other technical features were also being designed - all of which needed to work in harmony to bring the area to life. The sound design & composition needed to be relevant to the listeners; non-intrusive yet impactful enough to enhance the space.
Technical impact

A 360-degree experience.

The Leisure Realm is split in to three distinct zones and each features a multi-channel Meyer Sound audio system. This is paired alongside a variety of modern lighting installations, fountains, water features and large video displays. Our soundscape is tactically designed to work with the acoustic characteristics of each zone; however, the realm needs to adapt to the changing seasons and time of day. As a result, we embedded a TiMAX SoundHub to allow the system to be easily programmed, scheduled and configured by employees.
Human impact

A true euphony.

Lakeside has been truly reignited into a modern, fun retail and leisure destination. Home to more than 300 shops, restaurants and leisure attractions, we have delivered a unique audio system and musical content that blends each realm together seamlessly, creating a relaxing and flexible environment.
Brands and visitors alike can flourish at Lakeside. The regeneration of the Leisure Realm has given this much-loved place a new lease of life.
Key Figures
225,000ft2 expansion of leisure realm
60+ channels of audio
£72 million regeneration project