Willowdene School and Beyond: my gateway into accessible design

This month is UK Disability History Month which has led me to reflect on the development of my knowledge of accessible design. My interest in this subject was sparked while working on Willowdene School at Oakmere Road and since then has continued to grow and influence my work as a designer.
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What makes a practice a good place to work?

Working remotely has meant we’ve been missing out on the practice’s social life of chat in the kitchen, casual conversations and low-key advice and support that we’d previously taken for granted. Now we don’t have them, we’re realising how fundamental these social interactions are to knitting us together into a team.
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Architecture Engages with the Local Community at Stonebridge

Listening to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry reminds us of the importance of listening to residents of any housing scheme we are involved with. Here, Rosie reflects on the processes that informed the Stonebridge masterplan and regeneration.
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How Covid-19 is influencing the way we work

As the Covid-19 lockdown is easing, we’re asking wider questions about how we work based on our recent experiences.
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Building a Story

One of the founding principles of our practice is that buildings and places are about people, and therefore people must be involved in their design and making. But when the project brief is complex and the stakeholders many, the consultation can become almost more important than the architecture. Our job then is to build a story, not a design.
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Mental Health at SEH

Mental Health Awareness Week is almost over and as Shepheard Epstein Hunter’s self-appointed Mental Health Champion it was suggested I might say a few words, so here they are...
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Challenges and pressures in designing schools for London

What we see as the key pressures and challenges faced by architects in the design and delivery of schools in London.
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The Atrium Building; How do you make a place for people in a place that’s made for cars?

East City Point is a new neighbourhood of 610 mixed-tenure homes by Countryside Properties in Canning Town, east London, masterplanned by MacCreanor Lavington to stitch something of the Victorian layout of squares and streets back into an area devastated during the Second World War. The Atrium Building, with its 153 units, is the penultimate building on the site to be completed, but has perhaps the most challenging site, sitting immediately adjacent to Newham Way, a heavily used arterial route into London from the east. On this busy road with its noise and pollution, how could we make a place where people are the priority?
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You can take the designer out of Japan…

London’s architecture community is a hugely diverse group of professionals, and designers come from across the world to learn and practice here.
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Learning from Leicester

If buildings and places begin with people, then we as a practice have to get to know those people intimately. We have worked continuously with the University of Leicester for almost two decades, a relationship which has endured numerous changes in personnel and fundamental shifts in government education policy. Our relationship has developed over time as we have.
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The Atrium Building; The Art and Science of Delivery

The delivery phase of a project may seem unglamorous compared to the initial, concept design stages when the client’s vision begins to take three-dimensional shape. Yet almost always, it’s only at the delivery stage that those ideas are really tested, when ideas begin to become reality. Often that first vision is completely re-visioned, interrogated across the disciplines in such a way that goes far beyond the mundane.
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Warneford Hospital Masterplan - Many People; One Place

Peter Shepheard, one of the founders of our practice, often spoke of the importance of the spaces in between, the white space around the architecture which is fundamental in creating academic communities. The more complex the project, the more vital these in-between spaces become in achieving a coherent and singular sense of place.
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Productive Landscapes

There is a general misconception about the relationship between cities and landscape. We tend to think of cities as independent man-made entities, in opposition to the natural and harmonious landscape surrounding them. However, this is a false and archaic myth, whose root comes from the pastoralism of the 17th century that celebrated the humbled harmonious and healthy life of the countryside.
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