This project is for the conversion of the top two floors of a Victorian former clog-making factory into a home for a filmmaker. It makes somewhere from which to withdraw from a busy working life, and a place of reflection which takes advantage of the building's panoramic city views.
The existing pitched roof structure was removed and replaced with two oak box girders, which span the brick walls and create a new horizon at roof level. The box girders are inhabited and provide an organisational structure, creating a territory of enclosure and screening. The space formed inside one girder is a roof top 'thinking room', with views across the terrace and the city beyond. The other girder is glazed to create a room-like window bringing light and volume down to the floor below, as well as a covered terrace at roof level. Different gardens occupy the spaces between these two enclosures.
The existing floors below are stripped back to reveal the brick perimeter, with new insertions in concrete and timber forming the different spaces. The concrete is shuttered with oak tongue and groove boarding, to match the timber walls and provide continuity.
The landscape of the roof terrace above provides a space to re-connect to the city, recalling the sweetmeat rooms on the roofs of English Baroque palaces.
New Roof Storey
The new storey to the roof is an exposed steel frame with timber joists spanning between the webs of the steels. WBP plywood is screw fixed to the top face of the joists to create a deck, which has a hot-torched vapour barrier. The exposed timber and steelwork structure is exposed to the rooms below, repeating the existing method of construction of the warehouse on the floors below. Kingspan tapered insulation is bonded to the ply deck with a sarnafil membrane system glued over. An oak terrace is laid onto a lightweight structure fixed on posts, which bear directly onto the sarnafil. The roofs of the pavilions are made of the same mode of construction. The parapet and flank walls are timber studwork between the steel uprights, which are insulated and clad in copper using a ventilated cladding detail. The glazing to the pavilions is made from solid section oak and double-glazed units, some fixed, some sliding to create an ambiguous territory of internal and external spaces and thresholds situating the apartment within the city beyond.
The kitchen furniture was made in-situ from reinforced polished concrete.
The bathroom enclosure was made in-situ from reinforced concrete, incorporating an integral wet pipe heating system. The internal storage units are timber frame clad in oak boarding, with concealed oak clad doors
Alan Baxter & Partners
Concrete Installation Contractor:
White and Reid
David Bennet Associates
Mark Richardson & Co Ltd
The Wood Association The Wood Awards 2008, Runner up
Grand Designs Award 2009, Runner up
New London Architecture New London Architecture Award 2009, Runner up
Building Design Magazine Architect of the Year Award - Refurbishment 2010, Winner