Henrietta Street: Fixtures & Fittings

One look at me is enough to realise that I’m not a person who voluntarily spends much time in the gym. However, when a regular client (Fighting Fit City Gym) re-brands as Henrietta Street Gym and moves to a specially-designed new premises and needs photos, I’m there.

Owner Neil Perkins had been keeping me up to date with the re-fit of this former industrial building in Brum’s Jewellery Quarter but I was still hugely impressed when I finally set foot in the gym a week or so after it’s launch. Neil and his architects have cut no corners and have managed to retain the building’s “heritage” feel while making it an inspiring and comfortably modern place to train.

Retaining and re-using some of the building’s character features (like old machinery, exposed brickwork and parts from the goods lift) and augmenting those with well-sourced suitably period furniture (like old theatre/cinema seating and historic pugilist artwork) ¬†gives the gym the feeling of a film set.

Even the changing rooms and showers have been carefully planned and laid out with exposed pipework, reclaimed ceramic sinks but state-of-the-art shower fittings.

Even I, whose motto is “no pain…” (that’s it, just “no pain”) can feel a little inspired in a gym like this. Neil and his team have created what must be the most stylish boxing gym in the Midlands (at least!).

Lofty Ideas

Photographing interiors is something I don’t do much of but when a regular commercial client told me he’d developed some loft apartments in Birmingham for short term furnished rentals and the agent had failed to provide any satisfactory images, I was happy to have a go to see if I could do something different.

What made the challenge all the more appealing is that the developer/landlord had furnished each of the apartments in a boutique style using his extensive collection of vintage furniture and objets d’arts.

I used mainly daylight with occasional splashes of low-powered flash to fill shadows as needed in this lovely Victorian former industrial building.


It became clear from my conversation with the client that the images were as much about the details, and the lifestyle “feeling”, as about the fixtures and fittings. Previous images had been very “dark”, he’d told me, so I set about creating as light an atmosphere as possible.

Eventually, it was my images that the developer used.