Living/

In both the public and private sectors, we have a very high success rate in obtaining planning consents for residential projects and have the skill and experience to realise these projects to the highest standards. Our sound knowledge of the principles of housing fused with imaginative design enables us to optimise the potential of any site for a single dwelling or estate masterplan.

We are always aware of the current concerns of the environment and how housing at all scales impacts on our lives and this underpins our approach.

Homes/

Beach House
Camber Sands, East Sussex/

Completion/
August 2011
Accolades/
Shortlisted for RIBA regional Awards 2012
The Times ‘Best UK Beach House’ May 2013

English Seaside Modernism/

Sea Gem is a new house on the sea front, with direct access to the beach and sea.

Replacing an existing run-down bungalow, the brief was to provide a robust, modern and sustainable family home, which maximises and celebrates the proximity to the sea and the stunning views. The result is, we believe, a sustainable and contemporary building that references the best traditions of English seaside modernism.

The house has four bedrooms, a roof top study, a family room and open living, dining and kitchen areas. To take full advantage of the breathtaking views, the plan was orientated towards the south west, and the main living spaces were set on the first floor. Slim profile windows further enhance visibility and column-free corners allow wraparound glazing.

To provide a degree of shelter and privacy, the design incorporated a deep V-shaped room and terrace, which cuts into the heart of the building.

Outside, the site complements the natural beach dunescape and incorporates a sunken seating area, a fire pit and curving boardwalks. Planting is naturalistic and has been developed with Natural England to complement the SSSI (Sites of Specific Scientific Interest) status of the beach and dunes.

Despite limited access, exposure to harsh weather and a tight construction programme, the project came in under budget and was completed in Summer 2011, after just nine months on site.

Passivhaus/

HMY are working on a number of housing projects using the PassivHaus approach.

By combining very high levels of insulation with carefully detailed, leak-free facades we provide a high performance ‘skin’ which holds its warmth within the structure. This warmth is shared throughout the house by a whole-house ventilation and heat recovery system which provides fresh, balanced air to all rooms. We will also use south facing glazing and sun spaces to utilise ‘solar gain’ but with shading and opening windows to avoid overheating. This approach is a development of the PassivHaus approach, which has been effectively used in Europe for the last 20 years. Often it will mean no space heating is required in the house at all.

As members of the PassivHaus Trust and the AECB our research and development works hard to find new ways of improving the high performance we already enjoy in these PassivHaus projects and we encourage all clients to review the opportunity at the outset of design work.

In contrast to many eco-buildings, that tend to use bolt on methods of creating renewable energy, we work with environmental designers on buildings that are crafted and engineered to use the topography of their sites, their orientation and their materials to provide a level of performance which vastly exceeds current Building Regulations requirements.

Urban Planning/

Urban Extension
Bowers Gifford, Basildon, Essex/

The masterplan is for a residential development of 750 dwellings in a range of sizes and tenures to meet the requirements of local housing need. The plan includes the creation of a village “Hub” centred around a single form entry primary school with shared community facilities and a small number of shops to cater for the needs of the village, giving it a new heart and central focus.

The combined parishes of Bowers Gifford and North Benfleet form a discrete urban settlement to the east of Basildon and a substantial part is formed by the historical “Plotlands” which are low density former small-holding parcels of land which lack adoptable roads and infrastructure.

The proposals form a natural infill to the village and extend its western boundary and although building in the green-belt, release substantial areas for public access and increase wildlife habitat.