Brick by brick, step by step, architect Guy Hollaway and his team of 50 at Hollaway Studio, based in Hythe and also with an office in London, are working on a vibrant vision to continue to make our area a better place to live, work and above all enjoy.


Guy joined the then Cheney & Thorpe practice straight from university, and took the practice over some 20 years ago.  Working from an old tram shed in Hythe the team produces modern buildings which understand their historic roots.


Talking to Guy, it’s clear that he is full of passion.  “The Victorians and Edwardians truly understood the power and benefits of the coast, recognising the role it plays in our health and well-being.  In later years Folkestone almost turned its back on the sea, with all the focus being on getting traffic to and from the port as quickly as possible.  The town forgot about people.

“It takes at least a generation to regenerate an area, and we have made huge steps – we’ve got to keep the momentum going so that we make it a better place to live, work and visit” he says.

“We’re now in a period of new renaissance for Folkestone, with huge investment and positive change, and part of that is about making our young people want to stay, live and work here, creating opportunities which previously they would have had to leave the area to find.  I want them to have positive memories of growing up here.

“Architecture is dead without people, we have to understand how people and places work together, because all our connections are linked.

“I’ve spent my entire career here, I live here, and I’m passionate that we deliver the highest possible quality of life for our community.”


Projects Guy and his team have been involved in include some of our most spectacular and best-loved buildings and spaces.

Rocksalt is a great example of transformation – it led the way in the regeneration of the Harbour Arm area, which is now the most visited part of Kent.  It’s a modern, durable building, highly contemporary but it fits into the space, and is a sign of how we can reconnect with the sea” says Guy.

After Rocksalt came the Fountain Square – a great space, fun for everyone in the summer, and bringing water back to life.

Three Hills Sports Park is now a centre of excellence for cricket and hockey, and works closely with schools across the area enabling young people to access top class facilities and coaching.  Hollaway Studio has just completed the athletics track there, providing another opportunity.

F51 is, Guy says, “our most ambitious project to date.  We were originally asked to design a multi-storey car park, and ended up with a multi-storey skate park!”  It is also the first time ever that someone has managed to put concrete bowls in the air, attracting worldwide attention and a host of architectural awards.

“F51 is connected with all the schools in the area, enabling students to join for just £1 a month.  Two young lads, new skaters, are already on the GB Skate Squad, and F51 is the training venue for the 2024 Olympics in Paris.  That’s just one building, putting Folkestone firmly on the global map.”


As you would expect Guy and his team work closely with the planning team at Folkestone & Hythe District Council.  “I have tremendous respect for them – they are passionate, they support high quality design, they’re receptive to ideas and totally committed to projects that work for the people here.  It’s a very positive relationship, and one we’re lucky to have” Guy comments.

Looking to the future, FHDC and Hollaway Studio have put Folkestone on the map in other ways too.  “Architectural students used to go to places like Barcelona or Berlin for their field trips – now they’re coming to Folkestone!”

Hollaway Studio, The Tramway Stables, Rampart Road, Hythe CT21 5BG