Gates Ford Dealership

Building on our long-standing relationship with the Gates Group, DWW Design were instructed to design a new state-of-the-art Ford Dealership and Transit Centre.

What we did:

This high-profile motor dealership, prominently located at the north-east entrance to Harlow, has been owned and operated by the Gates family since the 1950s but was under increasing pressure to modernise its facilities to meet the 21st century expectations of customers.

Derrick Wade Waters designed and delivered an innovative and efficient new design for the flagship FordStore:

  • Contemporary design features including a continuous curved roof, reminiscent of the 1950’s original building and local architectural style
  • Extensive glazing to maximize visual impact and amplify brand awareness
  • Maximum return on investment delivered through smart space planning, including re-purposing of the undercroft (2147m2) for storage, wash-bays and deliveries
  • Strategic planning of project phasing to ensure minimal impact to ongoing business throughout development works.


  • Delivery of initial design, planning consent and build completion within just two years of being briefed by the client
  • Circa 5,000m2 floor area including storage, showroom and workshop
  • A new benchmark in the design and delivery of modern motor dealerships
  • Our fifth successful dealership refurb / new build delivered in partnership with the Gates Group
  • Highly successful collaboration with Local Authority Building Control, resulting in recommendation by the local council to submit the project for the ‘Best Partnership’ category in the East Anglian Building Excellence Awards 2018. We have now been selected as a finalist for this award.


The last word:

“Having worked with Derrick Wade Waters and DWW Design on numerous projects over the last 25 years, they are our trusted property partner for London, Essex and Hertfordshire. We rely on their team to come to us with informed and insightful recommendations, based on their expert knowledge of the region and motor industry sector.

The Gates of Harlow project once again proved to us that DWW offer the right skillset and experience to deliver a large-scale project from initial concept, through planning to project management of the final delivered facility.

Our new FordStore opened in September 2017 and the feedback from our customers and staff has been phenomenal. We’re looking forward to another 25 years working together and have already briefed the DWW team on the next project.”