More than the Man Engine

Website design and build for Golden Tree Productions

Golden Tree is a Cornish production company, set up to inspire and educate people through projects celebrating Cornish arts and culture.

Best known for creating The Man Engine – an eleven metre tall mechanical puppet miner which toured the UK – Golden Tree wanted to showcase this and the many other projects they have delivered over the years.

The creative company appointed us to design, build, and populate content for a new website to replace its existing main site, and streamline additional micro-sites into one.

The brief

Golden Tree’s existing website was outdated and poorly optimised, with poor navigation and a backend which wasn’t user-friendly.

Some individual projects had micro-sites, which left many people confused about where to find further details and purchase tickets for events.

Golden Tree wanted to streamline its digital presence – with goals to increase brand awareness, demonstrate its creativity, showcase its projects, and generate leads and enquiries.

Scope for website build

  • Create a bespoke WordPress theme with flexible layouts for multiple content types.
  • Integrate e-commerce to consolidate two separate shops, and streamline admin.
  • Design and build the website, and populate with the client’s content.
  • Create graphic elements of each project to be used as promotional tools on marketing campaigns.

The process

Focus meeting – we worked with the artistic director and communications manager to develop a strategy highlighting their services, and consolidating all their projects into individual categories. As part of this workshop, we identified audience groups by creating user profiles, which informed our SEO keyword research. The research was presented to Golden Tree to ensure the content was developed effectively.

Initial concepts – we put together several concept designs for the home page, which were presented to the client for feedback. The creative DNA of Golden Tree, and the visual nature of their projects, meant the brief was to create a website which allowed this to take centre stage. This step was crucial to gauge the level of creativity which was appropriate to inform the design.

Web design – once an initial concept was chosen, we developed the home page design, and applied the styles to create a series of page template designs.


Web development – we built a bespoke WordPress theme with integrated elements to ensure the functionality outlined by the brief was achieved. The back end of the website is user-friendly and the content easy to update.

Populate website content – for this project, the written content was provided by the client. We uploaded the content to each page, proofreading and editing as part of the process. We also populated all images, and created the fundamental SEO content including page descriptions, titles, and image alt tags.

Test and launch – we tested the site on the most popular web browsers and devices, ensuring the website was working as expected. The site was uploaded to the client’s own hosting provider in time for the launch of its latest project, Kerdroya, where the online ticket selling function was also tested on the new site.


The new site streamlines all previous content into one place, providing a ‘go to’ hub for information about Golden Tree and its projects. The site is optimised for mobile, desktop and tablet devices, and has a user-friendly backend for the team to update and add new case studies themselves.

The flexible design allows for future additions such as ticket pages, and now features an email newsletter sign-up to grow their audience.

A creative kaleidoscope design developed for the homepage of the new Golden Tree website.

Will Coleman, Golden Tree

“We are absolutely delighted with our spanking new website. It is good-looking, user friendly and does exactly what we wanted it to do! At all points through a challenging process (we are pretty demanding clients!) Barefoot remained entirely committed to a professional delivery and making sure that the end product matched our expectations.”

Like what you see? This is just the start.

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