House for Oskar + Theo

Tigg + Coll Architects, Surrey, 2019


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Following a national design competition win, Tigg + Coll Architects were appointed to design a barrier-free home for the Taussig family and their two young boys, Theo and Oskar, who suffer from Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

The challenge was to radically remodel the family's small cottage into a home that would cater to the children's developing needs, considering their reducing mobility and interaction with their environment, both now and in the future.

The key driver was creating spacious rooms for the boys with expansive views of the garden, and so large-scale glazing was designed to fully open up by sliding within the walls. The timber diagrid cantilevered roof is a playful insertion, yet practical structural solution, that is read clearly from the existing form of the house.

Tigg + Coll worked closely with Engenuiti on both the initial competition pitch and to refine the design of the roof structure. The roof acts as a continuous timber canopy over the internal spaces and external terrace, punctured by rooflights that bring dappled light deep into the main living spaces. As it sails over the external walls it forms a play space and veranda under its protective tree like canopy.

Both the design and construction process were influenced by a collaborative process of consultants, contractors and suppliers willingly donating services, time and materials. The principal donor being Ballymore, offering access to their supply chain. This provided the opportunity to use material and construction technology not normally used in one-off homes, such as pre-cast insulated concrete sandwich panels, typically used in high-rise, multi-unit construction.

The visible glulam joist structure enables maximum flexibility and use for the extension, being able to support additional weight at any given point if necessary, to adapt for any future medical support and equipment which the boys may require.

Photography by Andy Matthews


  • Begun: Sep 2017
  • Completed: May 2019
  • Floor area: 240m2
  • Sector: Residential
  • Total cost: £180,000
  • Funding: Charity project, with works and materials FOC by Ballymore
  • Tender date: Oct 2017
  • Procurement: Traditional
  • Address: Tadworth, Surrey, KT20, United Kingdom