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Castle confirms move to Tematic office

By Chris Williams. Published: 5th Dec 2005, 18:28:10 | Permalink | Printable

We gotta get out of this place

Signet Court photoThe vacant offices once filled with Tematic staff will be the new home for Castle Technology, it has been confirmed. Castle's embedded engineering team moved to Signet Court, Cambridge, in April, but left in October as part of a reduction in design and sales staff.

The company were known to be working on IPTV based set top boxes having reportedly deployed units to clients around the start of the year.

A source claimed: "Basically, they've had financial hiccups these last few months with one of their mega-big projects, so they didn't have the cashflow to keep the engineers on the payroll - N times 40 grand makes a large monthly outgoing if one of the monthly income streams dries up.

"I.e. it's nothing to do with insufficient Iyonix sales, but the somewhat larger-scale projects they are into. They'll continue using these programmers, but on a contract basis only."

Castle, the publishers of RISC OS 5, will leave their Framlingham base from where they have operated for over seven years. According to company director Jack Lillingston, Castle will shortly complete their move to 3 Signet Court Cambridge CB5 8LA, telephone 0870 383 4543, fax 0870 705 8879, and direct line 01223 503464.

Castle are also running a Christmas special offer on LCD monitors: punters can save up to 50% on the price of a monitor when bought with an Iyonix before January 31st, 2006. To qualify, quote 'X20056' when ordering.


Castle website

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Framlingham is such a pretty place - I am sure they will miss working there!

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 6/12/05 8:37AM
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Welcome back to Cambridge - birthplace and home of RISC OS!

 is a RISC OS Userharmsy on 6/12/05 9:13AM
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This is great news, really made my day!! It's wonderful to see Castle moving to Cambridge!!!!

 is a RISC OS UserHertzsprung on 6/12/05 1:20PM
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40 grand a month? I knew there was money in engineering! What is the etiquette here? Should we send a house-warming gift?

 is a RISC OS UserLoris on 6/12/05 3:37PM
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You would be disappoint at how little that gets you once you have included salaries, rent, NI and other bills :-(

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 6/12/05 6:01PM
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markee174: I think the 40K was the salary that was eating up the budget. And it's more than I'm getting where I work now, so perhaps it's time to be looking for another job :-/

Loris: What is happening to your face?

 is a RISC OS UserSimonC on 6/12/05 6:21PM
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In reply to markee174. Had you ever seen Castle's premises? They couldn't be described as pretty. And not in a very convenient location for visitors. They might have better luck with the big contract in their new abode.

 is a RISC OS Usercharles on 6/12/05 6:35PM
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So is the photo at the top of this page of their old or their new premises?

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 6/12/05 6:38PM
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In reply to markee174: The rent can't be included since it is mentioned as a value for the payroll. If I were earning almost half a million a year I wouldn't complain, even if it were before tax, national insurance, or other bills.

In reply to SimonC: Look whos talking, rabbit ears! :)

 is a RISC OS UserLoris on 6/12/05 6:46PM
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DS1: "So is the photo at the top of this page of their old or their new premises?"

It's their new premises. Watch out for the guard dog - very dangerous :-)

As Charles has said, it's certainly prettier than the (very) large shed with corrugated iron roof in Framlingham. And of course, considerably more central.

Framlingham had an unpleasant one-way system too, just smaller than the one in Cambridge!


 is a RISC OS Userdgs on 6/12/05 7:46PM
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I think the problem was that they were not earning half a million a year, just spending it,,,,

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 7/12/05 8:19AM
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I think Loris is referring to the fact that the quote can be (presumably incorrectly) inferred to mean that *each* engineer was earning 40K a *month*, which adds up to a salary of almost half a million a year, which is whopping, even for a highly talented Castle engineer.

 is a RISC OS Userrichcheng on 7/12/05 9:46AM
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"If each engineer was earning 40K a month..."

Wow, if that is the rate they have to pay programmers, no wonder they previously could only afford a "very large shed with corrugated iron roof".

But then it is a bigger shed than the small back yard garden shed the brothers used to create !Sibelius in the later '80s?

Good things evolve from sheds! ;-)

 is a RISC OS UserSawadee on 8/12/05 4:38AM
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Apple and HP started in the garage...

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 8/12/05 8:48AM
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"In reply to both Sawadee & marrkee174:"

Sheds may often be all that can be afforded at the start of a business, but eventually, to be taken seriously, a move to more salubrious premises is needed; and in a less out-of-the-way place, too. Preferably one with good public tranport links if potential customers are arriving by air.

 is a RISC OS Usercharles on 8/12/05 1:23PM
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If you entertain clients or have to give the right impression, plush offices are a necessity.

If you always go to a clients site or only need a few meetings, its money wasted. There are lots of places you can hire for meetings when required (which also give a much better impression than a slightly larger office in Cambridge). We always use a suite at the IOD in Pall Mall for our meeting our foreign clients....

 is a RISC OS Usermarkee174 on 8/12/05 2:54PM
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I wasn't suggesting "plush offices", but I suspect that Castle might have had an image problem with their Framlingham premises. If I was placing a very large order, I'd be suspicious of a company that hid behind an office that they'd rented for the occasion.

 is a RISC OS Usercharles on 8/12/05 3:08PM
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I wasn't paid that :)

Maybe it was an average - I can think of one or two people who are worth at least 40K - but I suspect the figure was exaggerated a little.

One might also argue that the salary included a premium for the element of risk involved in the venture...

 is a RISC OS Useradh1003 on 8/12/05 3:52PM
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wah, 40k - I'm in the wrong line of work :-p

 is a RISC OS Usersascott on 8/12/05 5:25PM
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charles - It's very commonplace for small/medium companies to rent office space just for meetings. Indeed some very big companies do it occasionally. Generally representatives of a large company visiting a much small company won't expect plush offices. In some cases it would be seen as potentially worrying if the smaller company did have really plush meeting rooms rather than hiring as necessary. This is money better spent on other things. The only time someone would start to worry is if a potential client wants to see the real work site, and the company c/wouldn't let them see it.

With all due respect to Castle, in the grander scheme of things they are a small company, and I cannot imagine for one moment anybody with the sort of clout to be placing large orders would be unduly worried if they went to hired offices for meetings.

 is a RISC OS UserDS1 on 8/12/05 5:57PM
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Some people seem to be assuming that this move is somehow about Castle relocating to Plusher premises.

Is it not equally possible that due to the stated circumstances Castle found themselves having signed a lease for say 2 years on the Signet Court premises for additional space they at this time no longer need and also that the lease on their Framlingham base was due for renewal at about this time?.

If the above is the case it could well make sound financial sense to simply not renew the Framlingham lease and move the whole operation to Signet Court.

 is a RISC OS Uservshears on 9/12/05 10:21AM
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vshears: Actually the Framlingham premises were freehold, not leasehold. Not that this neccessarily changes anything.

 is a RISC OS Userapdl on 9/12/05 10:58AM
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The contact details on the Castle websites now shows the new Signet Court address as Castle's Headquarters. The registered company office is shown as an address in Colchester, which looks like an accomadation address.

 is a RISC OS UserVirtualAcorn on 14/12/05 5:15PM
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Virtual Acorn> So what ? I fail to see the significance, the registered office does *not* have to be at the corporate mailing address surely.

Point is their business continues, albeit restructured. The Tematic guys are still available to do further contract work for CTL - so what's the problem?

 is a RISC OS UserAMS on 14/12/05 6:54PM
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In reply to AMS: I wasn't aware that there was a problem. I have simply pointed out that the contact details have now changed on Castle's websites, for some reason this seems to worry you. I also note that you say that Signet Court is "the corporate mailing address", are you saying that Castle are actually operating from elsewhere?

 is a RISC OS UserVirtualAcorn on 14/12/05 7:45PM
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As a former Tematic employee, I'd like to say that I think the N times 40 grand actually meant per /year/ rather than per /month/ (assuming N means number of employees). I certainly don't remember being payed 40 grand per month! :)

 is a RISC OS User7thsoftware on 14/12/05 11:45PM
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VirtualAcorn: "I have simply pointed out that the contact details have now changed on Castle's websites"

We're lucky that you perform this useful service. In another recent Drobe article, there were references to yet more statements and speculation from yourself, regarding Castle.

I'm sure that you are as keen as the rest of us that Castle's future projects will be as successful as the Iyonix.

Have you yet had chance to visit their new premises and wish them well?


 is a RISC OS Userdgs on 15/12/05 11:06PM
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In reply to dgs:

Thanks for your appreciation. I am indeed as keen as all other genuine RISC OS advocates for all RISC OS projects to be a success, regardless of the particular developer concerned.

I must confess that I have not visited Castle's new premises. However be assured that next time I am in Cambridge I will make a point of poping in to wish them well. On the subject of wishing RISC OS companies well, you are quite welcome to visit our new premises in Derbyshire and wish VirtualAcorn well too.

 is a RISC OS UserVirtualAcorn on 16/12/05 12:54AM
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VirtualAcorn: "our new premises"

No-one had mentioned to me that you'd had to move premises. Or at least, I didn't have details of your new address - my apologies.

I hope that you are settling in well, and I will take the first possible opportunity to visit you. Please do drop me a line with details of your current address in Derbyshire.


 is a RISC OS Userdgs on 16/12/05 1:32AM
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In reply to dgs: Thanks for the kind words, we are settling in very well. The new address and new phone number are on the www.virtualacorn.co.uk website.

 is a RISC OS UserVirtualAcorn on 16/12/05 11:11AM
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What a warm conversation! Can anyone else see the ice forming on the walls? :)

 is a RISC OS Userkrisa on 16/12/05 12:12AM
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