First look inside Auto Trader’s extravagant new Manchester office

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A skateboarding full pope, a ski-lodge and a meeting room inside an iconic Volkswagen Camper van are some of the highlights of Auto Trader’s £4 million Manchester office fit-out.

The automotive giant has opened the doors of its new 60,000 sq ft First Street office for the first time and revealed a unique take on the modern office environment. The 600 staff at the company, which dropped its print magazine in favour of digital this year, will have access to touch-screen media walls, 38 meeting rooms including the VW camper van and a rare Citroen H van, a café, pool tables, video games, a library and a ski-lodge-style area to relax.

Claremont Group took 16 weeks to create the new head office and the design includes six iconic cars, which were craned in to the three floors at the city centre address. The cars include a 1987 Audi Quattro, an Alfa Romeo and a classic 1977 Jaguar XJ.

The office also includes a more practical £1m audio-visual and multi-media system including digital signs, IPTV and video and audio conferencing.

Ann Clarke, joint managing director of Claremont Group Interiors, says: “There’s no denying there’s a lot of unusual and fun elements to this interior, but even the most creative elements all support how Auto Trader works. The cars aren’t gimmicks, they provide spaces that spark the imagination and encourage cross-pollination of ideas.”