Soft Brick Case Study - Bury Lane Farm  

Case Study

Case Study - Bury Lane Farm, Royston

The team at Bury Lane Farm contacted us after visiting the indoor play area at Cheshire Farm Ice Cream - designed and built by us! Bury Lane Farm shop in Royston, Hertfordshire has been established for over 30 years and sells a wide range of quality produce - including fine wines, spirits, local ciders, beers, a butchers, a fishmongers, a delicatessen, a gift shop, a garden shop and a coffee shop. They were very keen to expand their already impressive line up by introducing an indoor play area and firmly establish themselves as an East Anglian destination site for the entire family!

The Building

The 5,000 sqft building is a purpose built, steel framed industrial style building, so it required formal planning permission to achieve the Class E (used to be D2) status - the requirement for indoor play. In addition to the ground floor space, the unit also included a 150sqft mezzanine area which was designed to create a raised party zone, ensuring maximum space for the main seating and play area below. The unit had an ideal height of almost 6m at the apex and importantly great car parking facilities - as well as being easily accessible from the A10.

The Brief

On speaking to the team at Bury Lane, we knew they had some big ideas for the play area and were really taken with the quality and features they had seen at Cheshire Farm. A key part of the application for Class E (used to be D2) planning usage was the focus on education, so we knew our attention to detail and overall play value would be ideal. This educational aspect would allow Bury Lane to continue to develop their ongoing work with local schools and organisations. They already had school visits where staff would provide talks about various topics, including:

  • healthy eating
  • growing crops
  • fruit picking - strawberries, apples etc
  • free range chickens, eggs etc

Our design team were keen to include as many of these topics as various activities within the soft play design. Having all these topics to draw inspiration from meant a great head start for our design team. A farm theme was established from the very start - even though it is a popular theme for our customers, we knew we could produce a great looking, totally bespoke design that was in keeping with Bury Lane's already established brand. The play content of the design was deliberately left to our design team, but it was to be as challenging and varied as possible - including electronic features, rope bridges and a few types of slides / crawl tubes. Education was important, but so was the fun / WOW factor!

Bespoke Soft Play from The Soft Brick Company!

From a practical point of view, another part of the brief was to provide a link up to the mezzanine level with the design of the soft play structure. The younger age ranges would be catered for with a dedicated Toddler & Baby area situated on the ground floor.

Bury Lane Farm Indoor Play by Soft Brick

The Design

We kept the team at Bury Lane up to date with photos of the various soft play products going through the factory - the feedback was great, they couldn't wait for the project to come together on site! We're sure you agree the final design and build looks great!

The design caters for over 100 children (218 per BSEN 1176), aged up to 10 years of age. The play area includes the following zones:

Main Soft Play Structure
  • Partial 3-tier Structure
  • 4-lane Wavy Open Slide off 3m
  • 180° Tube Slide off 2m
  • Large Ball Pool - Duck Pond theme
  • Soft Play Construction zone - Hay Bale theme
  • Battlezone Arena - Chicken Coop (with eggs!) theme
  • Soft Play Ball Puzzle with Rollers - Pig Sty theme
  • Duck & Weave Maze - Vegetable Patch theme
  • Dizzy Disc Spinning feature - Milk Churn theme
  • Soft Play Tree with Lookout Pod Panel - Orchard theme
  • Vertical Stocks - Horse Stable theme
  • Inclined Rope Bridge
  • Walk of Fear Polycarbonate Decks
  • Log Bridge Archway - linking main structure with Toddler Soft Play structure

Toddler Soft Play Structure

  • Partial 2-tier Structure
  • Twin-lane Wavy Toddler slide into Small 'Splash' Ball Pool
  • Large Interactive Soft Play Scarecrow WOW Feature

Toddler Soft Play Area

  • Large Soft Play area with netted surround & low level Kerb Walling
  • Farm themed Rockers
  • Farm themed wall activities, including Bendy Mirror, Fuzzy Felt Panel & Game Tarps
  • 400 Series T Agility Kit - with soft play slide & climb
  • Farm themed Wobbly Character
  • Large Veg Patch area with Soft Play Veg shapes, including carrots, pumpkins etc

“The first weekend of opening with was a phenomenal success and they had to use overflow parking due to demand! Since then, the fun barn has proven to increase footfall and customer spend across the site and has also helped to keep the site busy at traditionally quiet periods in the farm shop’s calendar.”

So that's just some of the products included in the design, let's have a look at how we themed these products to suit the Farm theme:

Bury Lane Farm

The Completed Build

Soft Brick are happy to say we completed the build at Bury Lane right on schedule and think it’s one of our favourite Farm themed builds to date! Working together with other on site contractors, works were completed on time and Bury Lane was open on schedule!

Everyone at Soft Brick would like to wish the team at Bury Lane the very best of luck for the future! Be sure to check out the photos and stop by to check out the play barn and farm shop for yourself!

See for more information!

customer testimonials

“We were very impressed by the products and builds we'd seen at Soft Brick's other sites. Working with the design team for our own play barn was great - their approach to education and that extra level of detail was key to our decision to work with them. The ability to have a say in what each product looks like - and they look amazing - was important to us to ensure the overall brand and look of the area. It's all come together really well, we're very happy with the team at Soft Brick and the product they delivered!”

Ian Larkins
Bury Lane, Royston