A suite of aligned rooms, an ‘enfilade’, culminate in an articulated extension with a warm material palette of brick and timber.

The principal ‘served’ rooms are laid out ‘enfilade’; a dark painted study room leads to the hallway where large pocket doors open into the new earthy green painted play room. This, in turn, has a large stepped opening into the 3.0m high dining and snug areas of the extension which enjoy generous views down the garden to the mature Willow tree.

To the side a new entrance hallway, ground floor WC, Utility and Kitchen are set out linearly. The ceiling height here is lower corresponding to the existing first floor levels above. Dark painted cloakroom storage and kitchen units are inset either side of a timber panelled ‘pod’ housing the utility and WC functions. The timber cladding forms a robust finish and also serves to animate the circulation to the rear of the house.

The extension steps in plan and section. The articulation is resolved with an angled wall of London Stock brick which defines the al fresco patio space to the garden and is accessed directly from the kitchen through a custom pivot door.

The resulting plan works on many levels. The front door is re-located freeing the large driveway and Northern Side of the house for future development (a key part of the brief which we developed). A variety of family rooms, with varying degrees of light and privacy are laid out from front to back, with the most open-planned spaces re-orientating the home towards the large garden. ‘Served’ and ‘service’ spaces are defined and pragmatically laid out to ease hectic family life.

Materiality developed throughout the project with the client. The carefully designed architecture offers bountiful height, light and volume. This has been married with a warm material palette of timber floors, London stock brick and dark earthy colours creating a sense of cosiness and homeliness. Two types of timber floor were used, rustic parquet flooring defines the original sitting room footprint, wide plank oak boards, with a custom site finish, unify the extension with the deep retrofit to the side annex.

Areas of original brickwork were exposed and cleaned where appropriate. A carefully chosen new London Stock Brick by Imperial Handmade Bricks proved to be an excellent match. Brick specials were installed to form the crisp corners to the angled wall with a vertical stack bonded pattern to express the lintels above the glazing.

The kitchen was supplied and installed by Devol, the Real Shaker Modular Range with some custom elements, with a factory applied hand painted finish.

Glazing is high quality aluminium framed and solar controlled throughout. Thin framed sliding doors optimise the view towards the willow tree. Roof lights, with solar control glass, are positioned to bring light deep in to the plan and accentuate the changes in architecture.

Structural work to the original house was minimised, prioritising small openings in existing walls formed with simple lintels. This ‘broken-plan’ structural strategy is economic whilst also adding interesting complexity to internal vistas. The extension is heavily insulated to above Building Regulation standards and is formed in steel and timber frame. Warm deck roof construction is expressed to the main flat roof section with painted glue laminated timber beams highlighted with a simple cove lighting detail.

Don’t Move, Improve! 2020 – Longlisted
Grand Designs Magazine, April 2020

Status: Completed 2019
Location: London Borough of Lambeth
Engineer: Blue Engineering Ltd
Photography: ©Ben Blossom

Existing Ground Floor
Proposed Ground Floor
Long Section
Short Section