Terrace and canopies for a riverside school

Martin Edwards Architects, Twickenham, 2015


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Martin Edwards Architects     Download Original

  • Site plan    
  • Initial sketches    
  • Sketch plan    
  • Sketch elevation    
  • Plan at terrace level    
  • Elevation from the river    
  • Section through the new terrace    
  • Axonometric view    
  • Site progress photo    
  • Timber components    
  • Flitched canopy arm    
  • Working detail    

A covered outdoor riverside terrace for recreation, teaching and events.

The project is within a conservation area on the River Thames in Twickenham, and on the site of a house built by the poet Alexander Pope.

Pope’s Villa was demolished in the early 19th century, but the Grotto that he constructed has been preserved below a later Victorian merchant’s house, now a school. The remains of the famous willow tree planted by Pope on the riverside are preserved within the Grotto.

The project provides a new covered outdoor riverside terrace for recreation, teaching and events. A new stair from an upper terrace improves access to the grade II* listed Grotto.

The new structure wraps a prosaic brick elevation to the school’s dining area with a form that responds to the site’s riverside setting.

The tensile fabric canopies are supported by a flitched timber structure, in a form resembling ribbed vaults – a reference both to Pope’s Grotto and the masonry details and decorative timber motifs of the later Victorian buildings.


  • Begun: Jul 2015
  • Completed: Sep 2015
  • Floor area: 240m2
  • Sector: Education
  • Total cost: £175,000
  • Funding: Private
  • Tender date: Apr 2015
  • Procurement: Traditional
  • Address: Pope’s Villa, Cross Deep, Twickenham, TW1 4QG, United Kingdom

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