Company’s a roll as work begins on gaming firm’s £6m HQ

Tombolas North East design team on site, Richard Wood  of Brims, Mike Cronin and Phil Cronin of Tombola and Ronnie Graham of Ryder Architecture.
Tombolas North East design team on site, Richard Wood of Brims, Mike Cronin and Phil Cronin of Tombola and Ronnie Graham of Ryder Architecture.
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Work is under way on a £6million company HQ which is odds on to bring 80 new jobs to the banks of the River Wear.

Construction has started on the new building which will house gaming giant Tombola at Wylam Wharf in Sunderland as the firm expands.

We’re thrilled to be on site and it’s exciting to see construction of our new head office beginning.

Phil Cronin

The project will take 56 weeks to complete and is expected to create 80 new software development roles.

The firm’s chief operating officer Phil Cronin said: “We’re thrilled to be on site and it’s exciting to see construction of our new head office beginning.

“We’re working with a very talented design team from the North East, including Ryder Architecture and Brims Construction.

“We are two years into our five year 2020 strategy and are on target to double our turnover and our technology team.

“The construction of our new HQ is an important element of our plans for future growth and further international expansion.”

International design practice Ryder Architecture has created a unique riverside campus for Tombola. 

The proposals unify the current listed building with a new 25,000sqft office development, including innovative external landscaping proposals which reinforce the local character of Wylam Wharf.

Open plan offices located on its first and second floors will incorporate a three-storey central atrium and make pioneering commercial use of electrochromic glass externally to control comfort for workers and achieve energy efficiencies.

The ground floor will include a reception area, cafe and a gym for employees with a central feature staircase leading to the open plan upper floors.

Ronnie Graham, director at award winning Ryder Architecture, said: “It’s great to see our vision for Tombola campus beginning to take shape in this unique riverside location.  “The building will promote a cultural shift in office design through the delivery of a sleek, modern and desirable space - one that truly promotes collaboration and activity based working amongst its employees, linking them with their internal and external environment.”

Brims’ director, Richard Wood added: “We’ve been aware of tombola’s plans and had tracked the project for a while.

“We see it as a landmark project for Sunderland as well as the North East.

“It has a cutting-edge design and a very high specification which is exactly the sort of project and client we want to be associated with.

“We’ve worked closely with tombola and their team to get the project to this stage so it’s great to see the work get underway.”

The company’s current head office, based at Wylam Wharf, is a former bonded warehouse, dating from the late 1700s and is one of only two warehouses surviving in the area.

The team has said throughout the design process, Tombola was mindful of the need to ensure the contemporary new building will complement the existing buildings on the quayside area, to provide a lasting link to the city’s proud shipbuilding heritage.

Founded in 2000, tombola.co.uk is the largest bingo site in the UK, with more players than any other company.

The company is also the leading online bingo company in Spain and Italy with offices in Milan, Madrid and Gibraltar.

The company develops and produces original bingo software and games, created by an in-house development team and is one of the largest employers of game and web developers in the North East of England.