Architectural Emporium Hope St, Liverpool

Like all good Emporiums, Architectural Emporium (AE) is a seller of unique goods. AE brings vigour, creativity and dynamism to projects of all size and type. Not defined by a particular style, each project is treated individually and thorough detailed responses are sought.

Architectural Emporium is an award winning RIBA Chartered Practice defined by the varied portfolio and architectural background of its three directors, who offer a wealth of experience in all sectors and work stages. All capable designers, design tutors and project architects, AE’s directors are involved in every scheme and employ an inclusive and collaborative design approach, fostering creative dialogue with clients, the consultant team, contractors and end users.

Our team is extremely passionate about creating environments which ultimately enhance the lives of those who will use them. However, we believe that this is not possible without first gaining an in depth understanding of those people’s needs. Whether it be a single person or whole community, AE specialise in being able to successfully engage in a variety of ways but then, crucially, also translate these desires and aspirations into schemes which truly reflect them.

Although AE’s interventions are unique and bespoke to each site and the client’s requirements, it is possible to detect some underlying themes common in the portfolio, such as: simple legible forms; context driven sensitive proposals; structures and components re-described and recycled; sustainable and efficient arrangements; thoughtful and inventive enveloping; innovative use of affordable materials; consideration of interiors and furniture as integral; careful and sophisticated detailing.

Sustainable buildings and communities are key concerns and are integrated into design responses. It is of paramount importance to improve the built environment and provide better quality places through effective strategic planning and contemporary, affordable and original architectural interventions. For more information on our approach to design and sustainability, please get in touch.

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2018 RIBA Award: Walk the Plank

2018 RIBA Emerging Practice of the Year: Architectural Emporium

2018 RIBA Client of the Year: Walk the Plank


Bluecoat / Climbing Hangar / Equans / Futureyard / Global Grooves / Homebaked Community Land Trust / Integras / Islington Mill Arts Club / Kazimier / Knowsley Council / Lawton Hotels / MAKE / Merseyside Domestic Violence Service / Mission Mars / More Music / Open Door / Powys Dance / Rochdale Borough Council / Royal Court Theatre / Royal Liverpool Philharmonic / TATE / Team Oasis / The Africa Centre / Tesni /  Urban Splash / Views / Villa Medical Centre / Walk The Plank / Wirral Council / Your Trust – Rochdale.

Architectural Emporium Office Green Room Annexe Architectural Emporium Office Green Room Annexe Architectural Emporium Office Green Room Annexe

Toby Wallis


In the three parts of architectural education, Toby gained a 2:1 and two distinctions, winning the Haydn Smith award for best submission in the Advanced Diploma of Professional Practice and the Peter Tyson prize for best use of materials in design. In practice, he became a valued and committed member of Union North for over 7 years. Toby worked as Project Architect on a series of highly successful projects; including the RIBA award winning 3 Towers in Manchester and LAS small project award winning Liverpool Biennial Offices. He has considerable experience of all RIBA workstages and has designed and delivered numerous projects on time and on budget.

Toby views good communication as essential in creating a serene and successful working environment, from inception to completion on jobs of all sizes. He adopts a multi disciplinary approach to design, and considers surfaces and materials carefully to create distinctive spaces. By treating the landscape, form, façade and décor as a whole, the buildings he has designed are carefully considered and well detailed. He has maintained links with Liverpool University and occasionally teaches and lectures alongside his AE commitments.

Andy James


Andy studied at Liverpool John Moores University, gaining a 2:1 and a commendation in design. He successfully passed his Advanced Diploma in Professional Practice and has over ten years of job-running experience. He was employed by Union North as a project architect for more than 4 years, completing a series of large-scale projects including Saxton, a £32m apartment scheme commissioned by Urban Splash. He has also gained experience at John McAslan + Partners and Falconer Chester Hall Architects, working on a series of large commercial and cultural schemes.

Alongside Andy’s considerable commercial and technical experience, he has an interest in history, historical architecture and monument. Avoiding the predictable modernist solution, he favours texture, mass, narrative and sustainability. He regards effective communication as essential to successfully coordinating jobs of all size. He has maintained links with Liverpool John Moores University and returns regularly to critique students’ work.

Luke Cooper


Qualified in 2007, Luke worked as a senior architect for Austin-Smith:Lord for over 7 years. He then moved to Aecom, ultimately becoming regional director for architecture in the north of England. He has gained a wealth of experience across almost all sectors of the architectural profession. His in-depth involvement in the feasibility, design and management of commercial, healthcare, cultural and industrial projects gives him a unique ability to apply skills from different building types to an individual scheme.

Reinterpretation and conservation of existing buildings with a mixture of new and old is where his real passion lies. His comprehensive understanding of conservation techniques and processes has been formed through considerable analysis and implementation of English Heritage and ICOMOS guidelines on schemes such as St George’s Quarter and Qasr Al Hosn in Abu Dhabi. Luke compiled the Conservation and Management Plan for the high-profile cultural project in Abu Dhabi and is in the process of applying for RIBA Conservation Officer Status.

Luke is a very competent designer, design tutor at Liverpool University and project architect. He has worked for a series of large and small clients and consultants in Britain, Europe and the Middle East, including General Electric and Rolls Royce. He is able to understand the different processes, uses and client requirements for all building types and successfully convert these factors into efficient and effective architectural solutions that add value and quality.

Anna Kochan


Anna is a fully qualified architect. She graduated from the Barcelona School of Architecture with a distinction. A year of her study was spent on Erasmus exchange in Warsaw.

Anna previously worked at Vigum Project SL in Barcelona and Atelier Kratky in Prague, gaining experience on a variety of projects at different work stages. Her work is not confined to architecture as she enjoys working on interiors and graphics.

At Architectural Emporium, Anna has further developed her passion for delivering contextual, sensitive, functional and honest architecture; geared towards the needs of society. Anna joined in October 2015 and quickly became a key member of our team.

Jo James

Office Manager

Jo is a key part of our team. She provides essential admin support, book-keeping, HR and office management within Architectural Emporium. She has worked in recruitment, admin and formally (when she had more time) for our pub and brewery; Handyman Supermarket.

Michael Southern


Michael joined Architectural Emporium in November 2017 having gained a Distinction in his Masters degree at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, specialising in Experimental Architecture. As part of his Masters, Michael studied at the University of Sydney gaining a High Distinction in Digital Architecture. He also enjoyed travelling around Australia and New Zealand. Michael’s education has centred around social architecture and providing visionary proposals for how we will live in the future.

Michael came to Architectural Emporium after working with the Salford based charity, START Creative. His work there focussed on using woodworking as a creative therapy in his local community. He helped to build a large scale eco centre, small pavilions and small craft items for sale. Michael discovered Architectural Emporium whilst helping to produce sustainable tables for the Walk the Plank project.

Since joining, Michael worked on numerous projects at all work stages, gaining invaluable experience so that he could pass his part three qualifications.

Outside of work Michael is beginning to develop his own house in Liverpool along with pursuing his hobbies of graphic design, running, brewing and cycling.

Xorlanyo Avevor

Part 2 Architectural Assistant

Xorlanyo joined Architectural Emporium in September 2022 after achieving a Distinction in his Master’s in Architecture from Liverpool John Moore’s University. He previously worked at the Lincolnshire-based practice Bowen Architects where he developed his skills as a young practitioner. Architecturally, he enjoys developing community driven playful architecture through a focus on architectural tectonics and an interest in adapting existing buildings with a carbon consious emphasis.

Outside of the office, Xorlanyo enjoys playing and watching football, middle distance running, travelling through Europe, Africa and the Americas, experiencing new cultures through cooking and eating food from around the world.

Sammy Evans

Sammy started her part-1 assistant role in Summer 2022, after achieving a first-class architecture degree at the University of Liverpool. During the final year of her degree, she engaged with public consultation, and held a presentation on a potential revival of Huyton high-street. Sammy was also awarded with the Emma Holt travel scholarship for her work on that project.

In her downtime Sammy enjoys problem solving, especially through board games and puzzle games. Sammy is hoping to break into the field of humanitarian architecture, with the goal of volunteering around the world to create affordable sustainable housing.