Kew House - Bricolage

Donaghy and Dimond Architects, London, 2018


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This house and garden in a London village suburb are lived in by a family who collect art, artefacts and interesting plants

The garden extends back and around the neighbouring plots and is opened to the public once a year. The owner works from a studio in the garden restoring old master paintings and tending his beehives, the son is interested in baking, the dogs like warm floors and migrate daily between kitchen and garden. The brief was to reconfigure and extend the kitchen beneath an existing return to connect house with garden, using colour and salvaged materials.

An existing lean-to is rebuilt in glazed brick incorporating a daybed with oak-framed sliding glazing to the garden and mill-finish aluminium-framed patent-glazed roof. The yard to the side of the return is roofed over with a second glazed roof/lantern over the old dining table, and the party wall is lined with salvaged brick, extending out into the garden as an aqueduct carrying surface water from the roofs into a brick cistern via a new rainwater spout. The remade supporting structure for the return has a thickness to accommodate kitchenware and artefacts, Floors are lined with salvaged slate slabs heated from below, kitchen counters are cut from 80 mm thick re- used slate billiard tables, and light fittings are sourced in local salvage yards.

An unheated pantry is built against the party wall, wrapped with glazed brick and ventilated through a vertical slot with perforated zinc screen. As a future phase the attic will be converted into sleeping accommodation by raising a mansard roof and inserting another cranked oak-framed glazed screen with balcony between house and garden.

All photographs: Donaghy + Dimond Architects


  • Begun: Apr 2017
  • Completed: Jul 2018
  • Floor area: 30m2
  • Sector: Residential
  • Total cost: £165,000
  • Funding: Private
  • Tender date: Oct 2016
  • Procurement: Traditional
  • CO2 Emissions: 26kg/m2/year
  • Address: Richmond, London, TW9, United Kingdom

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