THE BLOG

25
Jun

A Grange in Yorkshire with a sustainable future.

Sustainable Grange | Architects for Leyburn | Yorkshire Dales

A traditional Grange and barn in Yorkshire has been neglected for many years. The new owners are very excited by their find; an extensive refurbishment will be necessary. Its location and off grid status makes a sustainable heat strategy the most viable solution for the futureSet within remote farmland it will provide ground source heat as the most cost effective solution for a self-sufficiencyThe house has some wonderful features with exposed timber beams, a stone tiled roof and half a metre thick solid walls all to be retained as originalThe character of the house will be complimented by a full house refurbishment and insulating the property is a priority. The barn will be used by the boys as a bunk room and will function away from the house.

13
May

Avoid the conventional and there is no Downside!

House Refurbishment  | Architecture for Camden | Belsize Park, North West London

The fine semi-detached Villa’s of Belsize Park, North London are close built houses. Separated by only the small side passages between the houses. Only the neighbouring houses form a boundary to the gardens, which are long, wide and mature in foliage. This is the setting for our latest full house refurbishment. The client wanted the house to feel better connected to the garden.
 
An accordion arrangement is explored as a concept for the extension. A series of angled facets have been used to establish a notional hierarchy to the kitchen. Expressed as solid and void walls the facets provide a level of transparency and privacy between the house and gardenThe staggered configuration of the extension creates framed views of the garden and a unique architectural solution. For an extension it avoids the uninspired full width house extension. The shift in geometry allows the extension to reveal a series of layered materials to reach out and touch the garden. All contained beneath the asymmetrical roof form. The roof is formed in timber and painted with a special Swedish preservative paint treatment. It produces a beautiful matt red finish. The roof projects beyond the building edge to provide a simple solar shading device to south facing aspect of the extension.
07
Apr

Not the only way to do a dormer conversion…

Dormer Conversion | Architects for Essex | Hornchurch, Romford

forresterarchitects are nearing the end of the complete rebuilding of a semi-detached house in Hornchurch, Essex. An alternative design to a new dormer conversion complete with 6m extension and house refurbishment in the heart of Essex. The house has been planned around a new stairwell which has been repositioned to serve a new floor added to the top of the house. Every room has been reconfigured and the floor plan is now much more efficient. The energy efficiency of the house has been improved with new double glazed units replacing all single glazed windows.  At 6m deep, a larger than normal extension has also been granted planning permission to the rear and provides an open plan arrangement.

16
Mar

A secret cottage in the garden.

Cottage Refurbishment  | Architects for Camden | Highgate, North West London

It’s rare you find a cottage in your garden but my clients have that on purchasing their house in Highgate. That said it has remained under utilised over the years. It is now time for some upgrading and the cottage is to be enlivened to provide stand alone accommodation for the in-laws . When not used by guests it will have a certain amount of flexibility to provide a study area for the client’s daughters and their friends. In the evening it will be used as a party venue following dinner parties or where they can watch a film. The provision of a sliding partition wall will allow the cottage to be subdivided into dedicated areas to provide privacy. The mezzanine will be orientated to run the length of the cottage. It will remain as a visual connection to the ground floor and provide a dedicated study area with extra bedroom spaceTo assist in the flexibility of space clever joinery will be incorporated to conceal the bed when not in use.

02
Mar

Our ‘butterfly’ roof is featured in Dezeen.

Save The London Roof | Architecture for Hackney | Stoke Newington, Hackney

The London roof is fast disappearing! As people don’t move and improve their homes, converting the roof space no longer protects the distinct parapet rooflineKeen to avoid the mundane lean-to extension, the new rear extension is a modern interpretation of the traditional London Roof form.
 
Hot off the press! We’re featured in Dezeen.
 
The roof provides an enlivened architectural language to the rear gardens of this mid-terraced house in North London. The ‘butterfly’ roof is expressed as exposed timber rafters. It provides a dynamic architectural feature and natural warmth to the living room. The original ceiling height was too low for a living room so it was necessary to excavate to create a more generous room volume. The new living floor level has been reduced to provide a ceiling height more in keeping with the rest of the house.
 
A new wood-burning stove provides a focal point to the living room. A new library wall which hangs from the timber rafters occupies one side of the living room. In the evening the lighting is subtle and located with indirect spotlights and avoids the need for pendant lights hanging in the room.
 
As part of the refurbishment works the entire ground floor has been reconfigured. The kitchen has moved from the back of the house and has been relocated between the new living room and the dining roomThe kitchen avoids high-level cupboards with two long counters providing an extensive work surfaces area to each side. The dining room has moved to the bay fronted room overlooking the street. The dining room retains many of the traditional decorative features expected of a Victorian terrace house. The colour scheme is bold and is complimented by the addition of a modern 1950’s furniture and light fittings. The dining room is now orientated for breakfast with the sun rising from the East. To the West, a large hexagonal glass window frames views of the small garden for the setting sun in the evening.

Photography by Adam Scott

02
Feb

No kitchen extension is just an island.

Kitchen Extension | Architects for Camden | Belsize Park, North West London

A new outrigger extension is required to replace the original kitchen extension. A new form is explored to avoid the typical full-width extension.  A series of angled facets is explored and developed further to define an original form for the new kitchen extension. The facets provide a notional subdivision of the kitchen and define the preparation, washing and breakfast areasThe aim is to respond to and respect its sensitive garden setting in terms of material, language, form and construction. The inclined form rises to the garden to provide a natural shading device from the sun. It drops to the rear against the neighbouring adjacent extension.

02
Jan

Double-height maisonette in the Dartmouth Park Conservation Area.

Double-Height Maisonette | Architects for Camden | Dartmouth Park Road, North West London

Currently configured as a two bedroom with a fine South facing aspect. The internal layout to a Dartmouth Park maisonette is to completely reconfigured. The main living rooms are moved to the rear with the creation of an open plan double-height space which opens onto the rear garden. Two extra bedrooms are relocated to the rear of the property other bedrooms. The new maisonette with better connectivity with the garden now feels more like a new house.

27
Dec

In through the outdoor.

School Library | Architects for Hackney | Clissold Road, Stoke Newington

As part of the design feasibility proposals for the improvement of Betty Layward school. The next issue is external circulation. The morning drop is made difficult as the school is accessed between two townhouses. The width is restricted to all the parents and children bottlenecking at this entrance each morning. Alternative strategies are being implemented. large loop around the perimeter of the school has provided some relief. It does involve entering the school through the car park and exiting through the front gate. The circular route does alleviate that feeling of swimming against the tide of parents as you try to leave the school.

10
Dec

Our nonconformist house extension is shortlisted for Don’t Move, Improve! 2016

Don’t Move Improve | Architects for Hackney | Stoke Newington, North London

Shortlisted by New London Architecture for a Don’t Move Improve 2016 award.
 
A modern interpretation of the London Roof it provides a modern and unique language for the rear of the mid terraced house. The roof structure is expressed as exposed timber rafter with a plywood ceiling which adds a simple but natural warmth to the interior. The roof construction avoids the traditional roof construction of slate tile. Instead, a single polymeric roof membrane is used to provide a well insulated lightweight warm roof construction.
 
As part of the reconfiguration works the kitchen has moved into the middle of the house floor plan. A new open plan galley kitchen provides a better connection between the lounge to the rear and the dining room. The dining room is now orientated for the early morning sun-rise to the East and ideal for breakfast. A large hexagonal glass window frames views of the small urban garden from the living room to the West.
04
Dec

Early sketches for interlocking houses on a Brownfield site in North London.

New-Build Houses| Architects for Hackney | Stoke Newington, North London

Our Harcombe house extension in Stoke Newington has been Built on a landlocked brownfield site in North London. The four interlocking house is simple brick constructions with oversized windows. The upper floors are spacious double-height living rooms with plenty of daylight and framed views of the local environment. Each of the open plan kitchens has direct access to a private external terrace, which is located between each house.

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