Author Archives: Kate

GF Tomlinson has been awarded a ‘Performance Beyond Compliance’ certificate by the Considerate Constructors Scheme, in recognition of The School Yard project’s achievement.

The aim of the Scheme is to improve the image of construction. All registered sites are monitored and those who are performing at the highest levels are rewarded. The School Yard’s main contractor scored well in each of the five assessment categories; Enhancing the Appearance, Respecting the Community, Protecting the Environment, Securing everyone’s Safety and Caring for the Workforce.

Neil Edginton, Director of EDG Property said; “The School Yard’s High Street location makes for a logistically difficult site and part of our promise to the local community was to keep disruption to a minimum. As such, we encouraged GF Tomlinson to work with the Considerate Constructors Scheme to ensure best measures were taken to deliver on this promise and I am delighted that this certificate has been awarded.

Clearly, no major construction project can be undertaken without any disruption, but this recognition goes to show what can be achieved with hard work and commitment.”

Sales success has been announced at EDG Property’s School Yard scheme in Harborne following an exclusive, private release of boutique apartments and townhouses to early registrants. Due to demand, 25 per cent of the homes at the mixed use scheme were specifically released at priority event – and all were snapped up in one week.

Purchasers have been attracted by the unique nature of the scheme which embraces both the heritage of the listed clock tower and the contemporary new build of the residential building. The boutique homes boast some enviable features including private rooftop terraces and zen gardens alongside high quality interiors and specification.

Neil Edginton, EDG Property, said: “We were quietly optimistic that the apartments and townhouses at The School Yard would be well received by purchasers as we recorded such high levels of interest on the run up to the priority event and there seemed to be a genuine enthusiasm from people about the scheme and its individual appeal.

“Harborne is perhaps Birmingham’s most aspirational place to live and we have worked hard in the design phase to bring old and new together in a contemporary but thoughtful way to create a one-off proposition.

“The School Yard with its distinctive clock tower is already a landmark for the area. The combination of living at the heart of a thriving local neighbourhood with a new exclusive public square as well as being just five minutes from the city centre has real pulling power and has attracted a range of purchasers from empty nesters to city professionals.”

Just one quarter of the homes were released ahead of schedule for the priority event and all were reserved within the one-week pre-registration period. These early purchasers, who were invited to individual consultations with EDG Property, will now also have the chance to work with the design team at The School Yard to create a truly bespoke home.

Neil continued: “We want to create a real community buzz at The School Yard and the combination of homes and the leisure uses are integral to that. We are now encouraging interested parties to make contact with EDG Property in preparation for the next release which will operate on a first come, first served basis, date to be announced.”

For more information or to register, please contact EDG Property on 0121 654 9404 or email

The original 150 year old clock which has marked time for Harborne residents since the late 1800s has been fully refurbished with ground-breaking horological technology as part of a £30,000 restoration programme.

Originally manufactured by John Smith and Sons of Derby (now known as Smith of Derby), the restoration of the clock at Harborne Clock Tower has been completed by the same firm. The works to the listed tower and the clocks are part of the £5m The School Yard scheme by EDG Property, which will see the redevelopment of the historic school building into restaurants and a new residential building.

The clock, which is positioned atop the landmark tower with four separate dials, has a flat-bed hour striking movement that drives the four dials through a double three legged gravity escapement. The work has the full restoration of the four dials as well as routine maintenance. The four clock faces have been modernised for the new century with illuminated backgrounds.

Neil Edginton, EDG Property, said: “The clock is an intrinsic part of our redevelopment of The School Yard scheme and of Harborne as a place. It is a real landmark so its careful restoration was of prime importance.  There is a lovely synergy in working with Smith of Derby after all these years and as we believe that the clock hasn’t struck the hour since the mid-1980s, we are delighted that it will once again mark time in Harborne village.”

The majority of the highly skilled works has been carried out in-situ, with some delicate restoration works to the clock faces completed at the Smith workshops in Derby. With all parts now reinstated, the clock will stay silent until the launch of the first phase of development at The School Yard which is scheduled for this autumn. This will mark the opening of the restaurants at the scheme, which include Metro Continental, Prezzo Group, Urban Coffee Company and community cookery school, Kitchen.

Keith Cotton, Smith of Derby, said: “It is a true privilege to bring a beautiful timepiece back into full working order, especially as it was our own firm that made and fitted the clock over 150 years ago. The restoration of the Harborne Clock Tower is respectful of its historic nature and aims to bring a community landmark back into use as well as ensuring that it will stand the test of time and continue to tick well into the next 150 years.”

Smith of Derby is well known for its expertise in conservation projects and also made and fitted the Grand Brasserie Clock at St Pancras Station, the Cathedral Clock at St Paul’s Cathedral and the Swiss Glockenspiel in Leicester Square.

Construction at The School Yard started last month and the commercial units are scheduled to be operational by Christmas. The boutique residential phase of the scheme comprises a number of apartments and two townhouses. Pre-launch interest levels have far exceeded expectations with pre-registered parties now being contacted to arrange priority appointments to reserve.

After much anticipation and huge demand, The School Yard residential plans will be unveiled to pre-registered parties at a priority event to be hosted next Tuesday.

To date, interested parties have been encouraged to register their interest in the luxury townhouses and boutique, 1, 2 and 3 bed apartments that make up the mix on Harborne’s historic clock tower scheme.

Next week’s event will take the form of private appointments with developer EDG Property. Architect’s indicative plans and specification, plus pricing, for this exclusive first release of properties will be available. Moreover, this will be the first opportunity to reserve a home at The School Yard.

Interest levels have been such that the event has now been extended, with appointments now being made in in to the evening.

Should you be interested in securing a home at The School Yard, be sure to register today with EDG Property on 0121 654 9404 to avoid disappointment. Alternatively please email

Birmingham success story Urban Coffee Company has signed a deal to take the last available commercial unit at EDG Property’s The School Yard development in Harborne.

This will be the third Urban Coffee outlet in the city, joining its Jewellery Quarter and Church Street sister venues. Urban Coffee Company has been at the forefront of a coffee-based revolution in the city, following the success of its first emporium on Church Street in the city centre.

This is the fourth and final signing secured at EDG Property’s mixed use scheme, alongside Prezzo Group, Metro Continental and community cookery school Kitchen.

Simon Jenner, director of Urban Coffee Company, said: “We have been looking to expand into the city’s popular suburbs for some time and finding a new home for our third coffee emporium at The School Yard is perfect.

“The combination of old and new architecture and modern design, at the heart of Harborne village fits with our brand identity, particularly as we like to think of our emporiums as being an urban version of a village hall and a major aim is to involve ourselves with the local community. Of course, we can’t wait to bring good coffee and our individual style to the good people of Harborne.”

Plans for the Harborne store, which will overlook the new public square at the heart of the scheme, include establishing a programme of events including film nights, knitting clubs and book clubs. Meanwhile, the Urban Coffee team is also planning further expansion and aims to open a further two emporiums in the next 18 months.

Neil Edginton, director of EDG Property, said: “The first quarter of this year has been great for progress at The School Yard – we are onsite with our construction team, we have recorded exceptionally high levels of pre-launch interest for the residential element and we have completed this final letting with Urban Coffee.

“The Urban Coffee offer is a perfect complement to the restaurant/ café scene in Harborne and we’re pleased to have attracted Simon and his team from the city to launch their first suburban store.”

Construction at The School Yard started this month and the commercial units are scheduled to be operational by Christmas. The residential phase of the scheme, which comprises a number of apartments and two townhouses, is yet to be launched to the market, but interested parties may pre-register with EDG Property for the first chance to secure a property.