Posted: 04/02/2014 at 16:28
Mahonia family, Aucuba, Pachysandra, Skimmia's, sarcoccoa, vinca's all tolerate shade and heavy soils.
A mix of them would give you colour and interest and all can be kept in check relatively easily.
Don't forget plenty of spring daffs to add interest.
You could also do a bit of soil improvement and create a few beds in front of the shrubs to add further interest.