Setting the standard in MEP Consultancy

18 May , 2018  

For 50 years, Cogan & Shackleton LLP has been providing exceptional MEP consultancy services throughout Ireland and the UK. We dropped into their Belfast office and caught up with partner Ian Douglas to find out more about this industry-leading practice.

Established in 1967, Cogan & Shackleton LLP boasts extensive experience within many diverse market sectors, including health, education, security and defence, transport, commercial, industrial, marine, leisure and retail, delivering high-quality independent MEP consultancy services to both public and private sector clients.

Committed to delivering naturally innovative engineering solutions, Cogan & Shackleton aims to create an inspirational build environment that is stimulating and enriching.

They develop robust mechanical and electrical system designs for all aspects of the build environment, with their team of in-house engineers trained to integrate and pass on a deep and practical understanding of engineering through all stages of development – from concept design to project handover and post-occupancy evaluation, culminating in reliable, cost-effective, practical, elegant engineered solutions.

The fully-qualified, professional, motivated and experienced team of consulting engineers at Cogan & Shackleton LLP have vast expertise across a vast array of areas including district heating systems; low carbon design & low energy design services; energy audits; plumbing & heating; air conditioning; electrical services design; lighting design; fire alarms; high voltage electrical design and distribution; BIM / 3D modelling; and thermal modelling

Other expert services provided include BREEAM assessments; expert witness; CDM services; construction Health & Safety; project management; and acquisition surveys & reports. Over the past half a century (and counting!), Cogan & Shackleton LLP has forged a place for itself at the forefront of industry, widely recognised for the provision and implementation of stellar MEP consultancy services across the island of Ireland and the UK mainland … and sometimes beyond!

The business was established 50 years ago by the eponymous Frank Cogan and Des Shackleton but operations are today overseen by partners John Smyth, Brendan O’Hara and Ian Douglas. The latter is delighted to report that, with the worst of the economic recession – which wreaked havoc across the construction sector as a whole – behind us, Cogan & Shackleton is very much on the up and up again:

“Like everybody else, we struggled through the recession but we are coming out the other side of it now and things are looking promising again,” he states.

“We’re busy and key projects keep coming in. We’ve recently finished work on a brain injury unit in Bristol and we are currently working on a development at Edinburgh BioQuarter for University of Edinburgh. We’ve also recently completed a number of MOD [Ministry of Defence] projects in the UK and we also work for the Prison Service.”

To give an indication of the versatility and variety of the MEP consultancy services provided, Ian continues: “We did the Embassy in Nepal and also worked on the refurbishment of HMS Caroline in Belfast – the First World War Battle Cruiser which has been transformed into a museum. So, indeed, there is a lot of variety to the work and we get to deliver some very exciting projects as well as your more down-to-earth factories, office blocks and hotels, etc.”

As for the key to the practice’s ongoing success, Ian says it’s simply a matter of “giving the client what they need when they need it”. If a little bit of magic dust can be sprinkled along the way, then all the better. At the end of the day, the trick is to come up with a practical solution that meets with the exact project requirements:

“You have to sit down with the client and determine what their needs are, then guide them through the process,” Ian notes. “You’re looking to strike a balance – engineering solutions that are practical first and foremost, and imaginative if required. The bread and butter stuff is vitally important, so we focus on coming up with ideal solutions at all times. Where there is scope for something imaginative, we can also provide that.”

Looking to the future, Ian is confident that the business can continue to grow: “We have successfully navigated the recession and are currently in a strong position, with a strong team in place and we aim to move forward and expand by giving clients what they need and by providing a good service across the board.”

At the time of writing, direct employment was being generated for a team of 15. “All of our engineers are trained in Revit / BIM modelling and that’s very much the way the industry is going,” Ian points out. “Co-ordination is critical and developing detailed modelling of the services that are going into the buildings.”

Over the years, many projects have been successfully delivered in the Republic of Ireland and Ian confirms that this will remain a key market for Cogan & Shackleton going forward:

“We’ve done a lot of work down south,” he concludes. “We’re doing a factory in Ballymote, County Sligo at the moment as well as Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology and we were also one of the key players on Dublin Port Tunnel through Mercury Engineering.”

For 50 years, Cogan & Shackleton has been providing unrivalled consultancy services to a who’s who of mechanical and electrical contractors and the signs are encouraging that they will continue to service the build environment for many more years, nay decades, to come.

Cogan & Shackleton LLP,

195 York Road,


Northern Ireland,

BT15 3HB.

Tel: 028 9037 1440

Email: [email protected]

Web: www.coganandshackleton.co.uk

Taken from Building Ireland Magazine, January 2018, Vol 4 No 1