Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minster House


The University is investing in the creation of new research and teaching facilities for our Schools of Chemistry, Life Sciences and Pharmacy.

Skip to latest progress updates »

Project overview

The University and the Lincolnshire Co-operative Society have formed a partnership to develop a new Science & Innovation Park to the south of the University campus.

jbl-site-planSite plan showing phase one (orange) of the proposed Science & Innovation Park


As the first phase of this joint venture, we are redeveloping two existing buildings – Becor House and Minster House – to house the Schools of Chemistry, Life Sciences and Pharmacy and complement the existing Science Building.

We are renaming Becor House in honour of Sir Joseph Banks (1743 – 1820), botanist, President of the Royal Society and High Sheriff of Lincolnshire.

The new facilities provide over 6,000 square metres of new teaching, learning and research space, bringing together previously separate groups of researchers and enabling a whole new generation of scientists to join our research community.

Design walkthrough

The design of the Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minster House has been developed by a collaborative team including teaching and research staff, estates and ICT professionals, architects and engineers.


The design integrates research, teaching and social space into a single, connected learning landscape. Undergraduates, postgraduates and staff will share formal and informal spaces distributed throughout the facilities.

The building’s simple, linear form facilitates navigation and excellent access to natural light throughout. A learning corridor runs through the building on all three axes, connecting the entrance with the teaching spaces, laboratories, offices and the new social learning spaces on each level.

Sited to the southwest of the campus, the new facilities face onto a large green quadrangle with mature trees. New footpaths, seating and cycle stores will enhance this already pleasant space.


Inside, interactive displays and a staffed reception desk will welcome visitors:


The original staircase has been reimagined to catalyse learning and social interactions:


Graphic, object and living displays will make this a memorable and unique place:


Clear signage and circulation will help first-time visitors to feel at home quickly:


Integrated seating in the building’s central core will support chance conversations:

Integrated Seating

The three-storey Nucleus will be the building’s social hub, with group and individual study and social settings, adjacent to two of the new seminar rooms (background).

Nucleus V2

The double helix motif will reappear on the outside of the Nucleus extension and the east and west stairwells.


Teaching and learning spaces

The new teaching and learning facilities in the buildings will include:

  • Six new seminar rooms for 15 to 60 people each
  • Four new tutorial rooms for 10 people each
  • Three new social learning spaces in the Nucleus
  • The Maltby Suite – a dedicated pharmacy teaching suite combining:
    • A flexible pharmacy teaching and learning area
    • A mock pharmacy and drug store
    • A medicines suite
    • Six consultation rooms

Undergraduate and postgraduate students will also make use of the buildings’ research facilities in the course of their research projects.

PT Viz 07

PT Viz 01

PT Viz 04





Architects’ impressions of the Maltby suite for pharmacy teaching


DNA-circular-mapThe new facilities will house research activity on every scale, from molecular to ecological. Dedicated new research spaces will enable significant expansion in both Schools’ research programmes.

The Joseph Banks Laboratories will include research facilities for molecular biology, microbiology, tissue biology, bioacoustics and ancient DNA analysis, chemistry and medicinal chemistry, pharmacology and medicinal pharmacy. Minster House will accommodate animal cognition, behaviour and welfare research.

For more information, please visit the Schools’ research pages:

Research in the School of Life Sciences »
Research in the School of Pharmacy »

Outdoor spaces and connections

The large green space in front of the JBL and Minster House will be open to students, staff and campus visitors.

The JBL and Minster House will be connected physically and digitally with the existing campus. New footpaths will reduce walking distances between the campus and the new facilities while a new fibre-optic duct will connect them to the University’s network.


The transformation of the two buildings is in three phases. As with all building projects, the timings are subject to change, but here are the current plans:

  1. Demolition and strip-out works were completed in May 2013.
  2. Construction of the “shell and core” of the building follows on from demolition and is expected to be complete by the end of December 2013.
  3. The University’s fitout works will follow on from the shell and core works, and are expected to be complete by the end of July 2014.

Migration of furniture, equipment and staff is expected to take place in July and August 2014, ahead of full building operation from September 2014.

EyeYour views

We are extremely excited about this project, which represents an unprecedented investment in the future of scientific research in Lincoln. We would be very pleased to receive comments and questions from students, staff and members of the public – please get in touch using the comments form below, and please share this page with friends and colleagues.

Project team

Project and cost management – Pulse Associates
Architectural design – Marchini Curran Associates
Mechanical and electrical design – EBS Consultants

Progress updates

1 September – Staff have been moving in to the new buildings and both Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minster House are really coming alive.

The open learning spaces are light and airy and feed directly into the Student as Producer ethos:

The laboratories now have equipment and look clean and professional:

DSC_0199 DSC_0198 DSC_0196 DSC_0197

The Maltby Suite, where our pharmacy students will work, also looks fabulous:


Lastly, the image below shows the JBL Boardroom. Again, this will prove to be a brilliant meeting space for staff and students:


15 August – This week the update is quite short as all the offices and learning areas are being populated with furniture:

DSC_0091 DSC_0092 DSC_0093 DSC_0095 DSC_0097 DSC_0098 DSC_0099 DSC_0100 DSC_0101 DSC_0102 DSC_0103 DSC_0104 DSC_0105 DSC_0106 DSC_0108 DSC_0109

7 August – Exciting news this week as Henry Boot prepare to officially hand over the buildings to the University. Snagging is in the final stages now and the site feels transformed. As you will see in the images below, Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minster House will offer cutting edge facilities for staff and students. 

The site will remain closed to staff for just a little while longer as ICT will begin installing their equipment, furniture is added and the builders finish off the snagging works.

The Reception area is beautiful and offers a light and sophisticated feel:

DSC_0511 DSC_0512 DSC_0514


The labs themselves are now complete and just need equipment adding:

DSC_0524 DSC_0523 DSC_0531 DSC_0530

The Pharmacy space is stunning, again this will be a tremendous work space for our students:

DSC_0517 DSC_0518

The office spaces have also been completed, with all rooms benefiting from natural light:

DSC_0515 DSC_0516 DSC_0520 DSC_0521

With just those finishing touches to go, the space feels nearly complete. Directional signage is going up:


31 July – It’s at this point we should reflect how far this project has come this year. Since shell and core took place during the winter (see the bottom of this page), major structural and aesthetic improvements have taken place thanks to Henry Boot and the University Estates Projects Team. 

The site is significantly transformed, with snagging (the term used by builders to rectify cosmetic problems), finishing touches and a final clean-up being the order of the day for Minster House as it nears handover to the University.

Below, images show the finished kitchen area, observation suites, storage and laboratory spaces.

DSC_0134 DSC_0133 DSC_0131 DSC_0129 DSC_0128 DSC_0127 DSC_0126

The outdoor animal enclosure has been completed and the greenhouse is also finished:

DSC_0132 DSC_0130

The Joseph Banks Laboratories are also seeing signs of finishing touches. The DNA strand is themed throughout the site, appearing on the building facade, entrance, glazing and office windows:


DSC_0135 DSC_0125 DSC_0124 DSC_0111

The shower room, toilets and kitchen areas are also nearing completion:

DSC_0117 DSC_0116 DSC_0118 DSC_0119 DSC_0120


This is an example office space, with the furniture set to be fitted in the coming weeks:

DSC_0112 DSC_0113 DSC_0114

The Reception area has been branded with the University coat of arms and the communal spaces are also taking shape now with the hand-built, bespoke seating areas being constructed.:

DSC_0110 DSC_0115 DSC_0123

On the ground floor, the laboratory spaces are being finished, with the first floor and second floors at a more advanced stage (see last week’s post below):

DSC_0109 DSC_0108

23 July – The site a alive with activity, with more than 100 builders on site finishing the interior installation.

The Joseph Banks Building is nearing completion, with work to lay carpeting taking place on the first and second floors. The floors are cleaned, treated with adhesive and finished:

DSC_0535 DSC_0536 DSC_0537 DSC_0541 DSC_0538

The Laboratory spaces just seem to get better and better after every visit. Here are two lab spaces with fume cupboards installed:

DSC_0543 DSC_0533

Outside, the gas supply has been completed:


The Harrison Way path has also been completed with lighting now connected:


Inside Minster House, work to complete finishing touches nears an end. The image below shows blinds being measured and installed:


Last, but not least, the local insect population is also looking beautiful. This dragonfly was pictured on site:

DSC_0554 DSC_0555

16 July – The first thing that hits you now as you approach the site is the new paving connecting the Science Park with the existing University Campus. The paving (temporarily named Harrison Way) will be fully lit:

DSC_0288 DSC_0287 DSC_0286

Minster House is very near completion now, with just finishing touches being completed. Following the hand-over from Henry Boot to the University next week, work to bring in new and existing equipment will begin. As you can see the corridors allow for a light and clean feel throughout:

DSC_0307 DSC_0308 DSC_0311 DSC_0312 DSC_0313 DSC_0314

Observation glass has been installed now for animal behavior studies. The view from the subject room looks like this:




The reflective glass works just like a mirror, so the animal subjects are unaware of the observation suites which flank the main room.

The  outdoor animal enclosure is also nearly complete:


Inside the Joseph Banks Building, work continues to create the cutting-edge laboratories:

DSC_0303 DSC_0302 DSC_0301 DSC_0300 DSC_0299 DSC_0298 DSC_0291 DSC_0290

The Reception is also beginning to take shape:


8 July – As Joseph Banks and Minster House draw closer to completion, building works are firmly set towards finishing in preparation for staff moving in time for the start of term. 

Inside Minster House, many rooms are extremely near completion. The image below shows the kitchen:


Inside, the sound proofing room has been completed. It’s a bizarre experience stepping into the room as sound stops travelling within it and you feel like you are in a bubble.


The multi-functional learning spaces are looking fantastic. The images below show the room dividers which will allow greater flexibility for seminars and group work.

DSC_0550 DSC_0545

A purpose built fridge room has also been completed. This will be used to store feed for the animals kept on site. The second image shows the cooling fan for the storage area.



Inside the canine observation suite, the dog parks have also been prepared!


The Joseph Banks Building is also progressing extremely well. The images below show the lab spaces, fume cupboards and work benches.

DSC_0269 DSC_0271

Each lab space has dedicated gas control valves which monitor levels closely:


The corridors are currently being vinyled. Firstly, great sheets of vinyl are laid and glued before rollers flatten the surface for a smooth finish:

DSC_0264 DSC_0262

Inside the main stairwells, the learning lounges are also taking shape. Bespoke furniture is being created for student collaboration:


Thanks to Becky France who took many of the images this week. 

23 June – The site is really gaining momentum now, with room finishing and furnishing taking priority. Inside the Joseph Banks Laboratories the ground, first and second floors are nearing room completion:

DSC_0301 DSC_0305 DSC_0306

Once the floor lining is down, work begins on adding the work benches:

DSC_0312 DSC_0311 DSC_0310 DSC_0309 DSC_0308

Inside Minster House, the finishing is also taking place with second coats of paint and electric works being completed.

DSC_0317 DSC_0318 DSC_0316 DSC_0315 DSC_0314

Outside the buildings, the landscaping is really taking shape, including the instillation of a new greenhouse and seating.

DSC_0319 DSC_0320

30 May – The site is really visibly transformed this week, with work to lay laminate flooring, ceiling tiles and second coats of paint the priority in Minster House and the top floor of Joseph Banks.

Firstly, the floors are sanded to an even level shown below. This is the top floor of Joseph Banks.


The laminate flooring is then set in place. In the corners, piping is melted into the laminate for an even finish.

DSC_0483 DSC_0481

The next stage is the secondary painting and ceiling tiles.

DSC_0484 DSC_0485

And the results look amazing. The rooms feel clean, professional and ready for scientific use even though there are many other stages before the rooms are handed over.

Inside Minister House the same processes are taking place. The first image shows the refrigeration unit.


The next image shows the kennels.


These areas are the teaching and learning spaces and offices.

DSC_0492 DSC_0494 DSC_0495

Outside, work on the landscaping continues. As you can see, the gas housing has been completed and there are lockable bike racks!

DSC_0472 DSC_0473 DSC_0486

20 May – The concreting on the floors has now been completed and much of the work to complete the wall lining and finishing takes place over the next three weeks prior to the large machinery being installed. This process involves custom fitting throughout:

DSC_0526 DSC_0524 DSC_0528

The electrical fuse boxes have also been fitted to some floors. These will service the 7,000m of cabling running throughout the building.

DSC_0529 DSC_0531

Minster House continues to progress well and works outside to improve the landscape have just begun:


Inside the finishing works continue with painting and decorating taking place. The kitchen area has also been fitted!

DSC_0536DSC_0534 DSC_0533

14 May – The cementing works have now reached the top floor, filling the central reservations which run the length of the building.

The crane below supports piping which feeds the cement into the cavity. The second and third image below show the filled cavities on the ground floor and first floor respectively.

DSC_0499 DSC_0500 DSC_0501

Along the corridors, work continues to plaster walls, create doorways and paint the interiors.


In Minster House, the interior finishing is approaching a more advanced stage. As you can see by the images below, the corridors and lifts are looking fantastic and the observation suites and offices have entered the painting stage with the ceiling tiles ready to be placed.

DSC_0513 DSC_0512 DSC_0511 DSC_0510

7 May – Today marks the start of the cementing works for the floors. This is a complex and precise exercise to fill the cavities in the flooring now the drainage and support structures are in place. This image shows the cavity on the first floor:


Liquid cement is pumped from the tankers below directly into the cavity.


This is a delicate exercise and once the cement nears the top, the rest is filled manually to ensure an even surface throughout. This process is then replicated on every floor. It is anticipated that the floors will take one week to complete.

The below image shows the vast cabling being placed in the building. The laboratories will house cutting-edge electrical equipment, so the electrical network to support the various machines is substantial.  The cable ducts feed every single room in the building and will carry ICT network and telephony cables as well as power.



The image below shows the Joseph Banks and Minister House placing on campus. As you can see, the campus will spread just beyond the Think Tank and Pavilions student accommodation.

DSC_0070 DSC_0083

28 April – Minster House is really taking shape now, with the second stage electrical works nearing completion and heating, lighting and door frames all being fitted.

These images show the cabling in place and the ceiling tile frames ready for fitting.

DSC_0490 DSC_0491 DSC_0493 DSC_0494 DSC_0495

This image shows the area which will be used for canine observation.

Inside the Joseph Banks Building, each floor is at a slightly different stage. This ground floor image shows the complex network of air ventilation pipes:


The floors are also receiving their data cabling now. Some 35,000m of cabling will be used within the building! A large proportion of the plastering has also been completed.

DSC_0485 DSC_0476 DSC_0486

15 April – The Project Steering Group visited the building site to look at the latest updates on the Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minister House.



Henry Boot colleagues escorted the team around the site. The latest works show the data cables being readied, plastering of the walls, painting and flooring preparation:

DSC_0043 DSC_0013 DSC_0040 DSC_0029 DSC_0028 DSC_0026 DSC_0009 DSC_0011 DSC_0012

As an additional surprise, Minster House has already attracted more local wildlife:


4 April – The interior of Minster House are being plastered and painted now the boarding is up. The building is really taking shape now:

DSC_0363 DSC_0362


Inside the Joseph Banks Building, data cables are being placed and the interior walls are going up quickly. The views across the building show temporary access whilst the main corridors are being finished.

DSC_0350 DSC_0359 DSC_0358 DSC_0357 DSC_0356 DSC_0355 DSC_0354 DSC_0353 DSC_0351

17 March – The internal walls are going up across both buildings, with the majority of building activity focusing on providing drainage and electrical supply ducts. The images below show the works within the Joseph Banks Laboratories:

DSC_0345 DSC_0341 DSC_0342



These images show Minister House’s interior works:

DSC_0357 DSC_0353 DSC_0354 DSC_0356 

7 March – The interior walls are the main focus this week, with work to supply power and drainage the order of the day. The staircase to the basement has also been fitted.

DSC_3791 DSC_3792 DSC_3793 DSC_3794 DSC_3795

21 February – Work on the interior has really stepped up now that Henry Boot PLC have come on site. Their work will be to build the interior walls and finishes in the Joseph Banks Building and Minister House.

We’ve had our first glimpse of Life Sciences with the Buildings!


The images below show the views from the roof overlooking the Pavilions and Brayford Campus:

DSC_3769 DSC_3767 DSC_3765

The entrance to Joseph Banks truly looks fabulous:


Internally, Joseph Banks’ entrance is looking near completion, and work continues to build the laboratory spaces in the main wings of the building (last image in this section).

DSC_3752 DSC_3756 DSC_3755 DSC_3754 DSC_3759 DSC_3771

Inside Minster House, it is a similar story as the walls are being placed and air controls are fitted:

DSC_3774 DSC_3776

7 February – Updates will appear more regularly now the majority of shell had core has been completed.

The external views show the Joseph Banks building’s true potential, with the helix design now complete:

DSC_1394 DSC_1393

The entrance point is stunning and keeps the original 1950s feature, but with a modern twist:

DSC_1404 DSC_1403


The work for the labs and office spaces continue apace:

DSC_1410 DSC_1408 DSC_1407 DSC_1406 DSC_1401 DSC_1402

The Boardroom:


Things are also progressing nicely within the sister building, Minster House. A new entrance point has been added to make the space more inviting:

DSC_1412 DSC_1414 DSC_1413

Inside, the interior work will begin shortly:

DSC_1416 DSC_1417

16 December – Shell and Core is nearly complete, with the exterior helices placed and window frames set. Work to complete the rear extension is almost finished, and the project will enter the interior fit out in January. The interior fit out will include the wall building, floor finishing, painting and decorating and the installation of new equipment. Exciting times!

Here are the latest exterior shots:

DSC_1207 DSC_1186 DSC_1185 DSC_1184 DSC_1182 DSC_1180 1000 DSC_1212 JBL south in progress   

Internally, the new extension provides fantastic lighting and a sense of space:

DSC_1199 DSC_1203 DSC_1202 DSC_1200

The main building still looks rather bare, but it will really take shape in the New Year when the interior works begin.

DSC_1198 DSC_1192

However, new toilets, lifts and kitchen areas already look well under way:

DSC_1205 DSC_1204 DSC_1190

Lastly, this is inside the helix facade to house the building’s services and mechanical ventilation.


25 October – Work will continue on Shell and Core until December, but real visual change is beginning to take place on site.

The extensions to sides of the building are coming along apace, and the entrance is also taking shape.

DSC_0749 DSC_0750 DSC_0751 DSC_0753 DSC_0754 DSC_0756 DSC_0758

Minster House is also coming along nicely, with new exteriors and windows now being fitted:

DSC_0762 DSC_0765

20 September – The Shell and Core progress has continued across the site since the last update, with the new windows now in place and the steel structures underway.

The front of the building Joseph Banks Building has progressed well and will offer a really impressive welcome to the Science Park as you walk in:

DSC_0348 DSC_0349 DSC_0361

The rear of the building will house additional space and you can see the steel frame in place:

DSC_0353 DSC_0354

The sister building, currently named Minster House, has been fully gutted as you can see below:


6 August 2013 – Dr. Enrico Ferrari in the School of Life Sciences took this great photo of fully stripped-out JBL on Saturday. The Nucleus will attach to the central core on this south side of the building. Thanks Enrico!

2013-08-06 - photo by Enrico Ferrari

18 July 2013 – the latest photos show the shell and core works progressing. The past couple of weeks have focussed on piling for the extensions on either side of the Joseph Banks building and at the front.

DSC_2603 DSC_2604 DSC_2605 DSC_2606

Work has also taken place to remove the old windows from the building and replace with new frames.

DSC_2608 DSC_2601


9 May 2013 – demolition work in Minster House and the JBL’s wings is now complete, with approximately one week’s work remaining in the JBL’s core. Design and procurement of both buildings’ scientific fitout, computing infrastructure, mechanical and electrical services, finishes and furniture continues.

DSC_1729 DSC_1736 DSC_1738 DSC_1741 DSC_1744 DSC_1747 DSC_1752 DSC_1753 DSC_1754 DSC_1756 DSC_1759 DSC_1764 DSC_1768 DSC_1770

25 April 2013 – demolition works in both buildings are now well advanced, with detailed design of the University’s fitout works progressing in parallel. Here are some shots of both buildings showing the progress of demolition work so far:





26 thoughts on “Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minster House

  1. Pingback: David Chiddick Building wins regeneration award | Learning Landscapes

  2. Pingback: Joseph Banks Laboratories project page updated | Learning Landscapes

  3. Pingback: | Lincoln School of Pharmaceutical Sciences

  4. Pingback: Evolution in progress: JBL update | Learning Landscapes

  5. Pingback: Joseph Banks Laboratories: new visuals | Learning Landscapes

  6. Pingback: Learning Landscapes update for Education Committee | Learning Landscapes

  7. Pingback: Joseph Banks Laboratories and Minster House update | Learning Landscapes

  8. Pingback: Update: Lincoln Science and Innovation Park | University of Lincoln Public Engagement

  9. Pingback: Student Experience Committee update for March 2014 | Learning Landscapes

  10. Pingback: Short 'Sir Joseph Banks - Endeavour' with David Attenborough | Lincoln School of Media Network

  11. Pingback: Latest Joseph Banks images available | University of Lincoln - Student News

  12. Pingback: Student Experience Committee update for May 2014 | Learning Landscapes

  13. Pingback: New Joseph Banks images available | University of Lincoln - Student News

  14. Pingback: Education Committee update for May 2014 | Learning Landscapes

  15. Pingback: Latest Joseph Banks images now available | University of Lincoln - Student News

  16. Pingback: Latest Joseph Banks Building works images | University of Lincoln - Student News

  17. Pingback: Summer Works Programme – Investment in Brayford Campus | Learning Landscapes

  18. Pingback: Latest Joseph Banks building works images now available | University of Lincoln - Student News

  19. Pingback: Joseph Banks Laboratories & Minster House progress update | Learning Landscapes

  20. Pingback: AAD and JBL project pages updated | Learning Landscapes

  21. Pingback: Latest Joseph Banks Laboratories building works images | University of Lincoln - Student News

  22. Pingback: Joseph Banks Laboratories near final stages of completion | University of Lincoln - Student News

  23. Pingback: University of Lincoln welcomes new diabetes research team | University of Lincoln Public Engagement

  24. Pingback: University of Lincoln welcomes new diabetes research team | University of Lincoln Public Engagement Blog

  25. Pingback: Chris Packham and a tortoise named Charles Darwin | University of Lincoln Public Engagement

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>