Tennyson Road

ROAR Architects, London, 2021



Photos by Chris Wharton     Download Original

  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road_ROAR_Architects_Chris_Wharton    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-16    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-43_ROAR_Architects_Chris_Wharton    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-47-_ROAR_Architects_Chris_Wharton    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-22    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-ROAR_Architects_Chris_Wharton    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-17_ROAR_Architects_Chris_Wharton    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-13    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-5    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Tennyson_Road-2_ROAR_Architects_Chris_Wharton    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_26_TR_-_GF_Plan_ROAR_Architects    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_Ribs_CNC_template_ROAR_Architects    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_26_TR_elevation_ROAR_Architects    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_section    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_before    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_concept    
  • ZXTFDJGGTBBNKYE_construction    

ROAR Architects has dramatically overhauled a family home in Walthamstow, London using new technologies and innovative design methods to create a bright and spacious extension.

With a growing family and regular visitors coming to stay, the owners needed more space on their constrained site. By creating two distinct volumes, it was possible to build up and out to the rear and therefore provide a generous a flexible space for gatherings. Inspired by the history of grand architectural spaces and ship-building techniques, a vaulted roof was developed so that head heights could be increased beyond the standard sloped side extension and still fall within the constraints of planning. The roof is expressed internally as a dramatic ceiling formed of CNC birch ply ribs. The design team combined precise measurements with standardised components to create a cost-effective ‘kit-of-parts’ construction process, reducing time and waste. A small nook is created at the base of each rib that offers a little shelf for the family’s objects, helping the space become a gallery of everyday life. Skylights have been cut into the structure to bring daylight deep within the plan and help animate the space. The CNC methods used for this structure are also deployed to create a specially crafted screen that echoes the shape of the ribs. A bi folding window is built into the end of the extension with a seat incorporated as a spot to stop and enjoy views out to the garden. To keep the scheme within budget, ROAR undertook construction of the plywood ribs themselves. These were measured, templated and tested on site. CNC templates were then set-up to minimise sheets (further reducing waste and cost), all of which were cut and delivered to site. Working closely with the contractor, joists were then glued on site and installed for building control.


  • Begun: Nov 2020
  • Completed: Jul 2021
  • Floor area: 109m2
  • Sector: House
  • Total cost: £315,000
  • Funding: Private
  • Tender date: Mar 2020
  • Procurement: Traditional JCT 2016 with contractors design
  • Address: London, E17, United Kingdom

Professional Team