Wednesday, 2 December 2015

RIBA House of the Year..... the fantastic Flint House by Architects Skene Catling De La Pena for the Rothschild family. The judges rightly described it as a 'marvel of geological evolution and construction'. 


Tuesday, 25 August 2015


The shortlist this year for the prestigious Stirling Prize has been cleverly selected to tick all the right boxes. There is the understated functional social housing nestled in the heart of London up against the flashy apartment blocks designed by Richard Rogers with the customary exposed brightly coloured structure. 

Then there is the refurbishment and extension of the Whitworth Gallery Manchester which whilst clever in so many ways and successfully embracing the leafy park setting, the architecture feels slightly forced in some respects.

In the obligatory education category there is the last of the 'building schools for the future' project, Burntwood school, a strong contender and great example of how well designed buildings can influence and inspire the occupants. In addition there is a new building for the University of Greenwich which houses the school of architecture which does little to grab my attention but has created some interesting architectural forms and facades. 

The final contender is the Maggie Cancer Care Centre in Lanarkshire by Reiach and Hall Architects which is my favourite of the 6 shortlisted. It is a beautifully simple single storey building designed around small intimate courtyards creating internal and external spaces which are both calm and serene. The clever punctuation of walls and finishes give it a lightness of touch in the landscape and in turn bring natural light into the 'comfortable' domestic scale interior spaces. 

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

'Canopy Stair'

I absolutely love this invention by two art students, an imaginative but practical solution to climbing trees. The steps are made from curved birch plywood which are strapped to the tree trunk in a way so as not to damage the tree yet adaptable enough to work on any tree trunk. 

More information can be found at

Monday, 4 May 2015

Old Meets New

A holiday home in Scotland by WT Architecture has retained and repaired the old stone structure and cleverly inserted a blackened timber structure within it. 

This to me is a beautiful example of old meeting new with some thoughtful detailing at interfaces to give that feeling of separation between the two elements.