A Garden Room

Pilbrow & Partners, London, 2020


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A few simple architectural moves create layered long views through the house, connecting the house with its surroundings and redefining the organisation of its internal spaces

In the existing building the kitchen and dining room was cramped, inflexible, cold, poorly lit and poorly connected to the main living rooms of the upper ground floor. The garden was largely absent from the internal experience of the house. The narrow residual space adjacent the existing side return had no meaningful use.

Replanning ground floor rooms and openings produces a long view from the main entrance to the mature tree at the end of the garden and dramatically transforms the relationship between the house and the garden. The garden room itself is expanded to the full width of the plot and the floor lowered to the level of the earth, producing a better proportioned room more intimately connected to the green exterior courtyard.

One wing of the kitchen is moved out to the western property wall as a freestanding object connected to the main space across a structurally glazed opening, made possible through an expanded underpinned foundation and stiff vertical cantilever timber construction. A generous glazed opening is introduced into the retained brick side return.

The new extension stops short of the back wall of the main house, so that the original elevation of the main house maintains its visual and physical integrity as well as access to air, light and views back into the garden across the new glazed room. A palette of natural materials is selected combing Birch ply, Terrazzo tiles and stainless steel, to create a calm setting to the revived room within the garden.

All photos by Peter Cook


  • Begun: Jan 2019
  • Completed: Jul 2020
  • Floor area: 122m2
  • Sector: Residential
  • Total cost: £152,000
  • Funding: Private
  • Procurement: JCT, traditional procurement
  • Address: Landrock Road, London, N8, United Kingdom

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