A leading firm of architects has firm designs on the transformation of Carlisle.

Award-winning Architects Plus is celebrating 30 years with an eye on the future development of the city.

Housed in Viaduct House on Victoria Viaduct, Architects Plus is working on a number of major schemes including the ambitious Carlisle Station Gateway Project, which the firm is leading.

Set up in 1988 by founding partners Richard Jefferson, David Lamond, Raymond Whittaker, Tom Langlands and John Carruthers, the firm has been at the forefront of some of Cumbria's most enterprising building schemes.

All five have now retired and the practice is today run by its three directors Christian Judd, David Blair, Barbara Gower, who have worked their way up through the company.

Christian said: “We are helping to transform Carlisle and are particularly excited to be leading on the Station Gateway project to transform the area around Court Square.”

Architects Plus has been involved in a raft on innovative developments across the county over the past three decades including work on a number of schools, the University of Cumbria's Brampton Road campus, Kingmoor Park, the Pirelli tyre factory in Carlisle and Energus at Lillyhall in west Cumbria.

Recently, the practice celebrated winning a top design award for helping transform a derelict barn near Carlisle into an into a £470,000 luxury family home

Architects Plus worked with Carlisle builders McKnight & Son Builders the four-bedroomed home, Linstock Barn which won the prize for Best Change of Use of an Existing Building or Conversion in the northern heat of the Local Authority Building Control's (LABC) Excellence Awards.

It was shortlisted in the Best Educational Building of same awards, for its work on the £1.25 million redesign of Houghton School near Carlisle. The innovative extension is naturally ventilated with specially designed wind catchers on the roof.

The firm also picked up plaudits for its design of the The Lodge and Parsons Collar pub at the Solent Hotel at Fareham in Hampshire for Daniel Thwaites which saw it taking an award for best commercial project in the south east region.

Christian described the work of Architects Plus as diverse ranging from commercial to residential with one-off homes such as the spectacular, energy-efficient Brunel House at Kirkbride which was designed for steelwork fabrication boss, Derek Tweddle.

“We do a lot of work across the country. Another of our hotel projects was Thorpe Park in Leeds,” he added.