South Oxfordshire Property, New English House Images, Contemporary Architecture England

Oxfordshire House : Contemporary English Property

New Peppard Common Residence in South Oxfordshire design by Spratley Studios, southern England, UK

3 May 2012

Beechwood – Contemporary Oxfordshire House, central England

Design: Spratley Studios

Location: Peppard Common, South Oxfordshire, southern England, United Kingdom


South Oxfordshire District Council Planning Committee voted unanimously in favour of granting an exceptional planning permission to an innovative and highly sustainable landmark dwelling designed by Spratley Studios for a sensitive rural location on the edge of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

South Oxfordshire House
picture from architects

South Oxfordshire House

In creating this striking, one-off design Spratley Studios overcame the issues surrounding a substantial increase in area on the site from 2,300 sq ft to 4,700 sq ft, and challenged the perceptions of architectural design in the area. The corten steel clad, rectilinear home will replace an unassuming 1960s brick and tile clad house and redundant outbuildings.

Highly commended by local councillors for ‘thinking outside the box and progressing the public’s understanding of contemporary architecture’, the scheme reveals a new local benchmark in sustainable and contemporary design, aspiring to meet level five, or potentially level six, of the Code for Sustainable Homes.

The implementation of energy saving solutions through considered design has been integral to the development process for ‘Beechwood’, with the emphasis on orientation and materials to utilise natural light and exploit thermal gains. Provision of renewable energy technologies such as a rooftop, photo-voltaic array, biomass boiler and ground source heat pump will help bolster key sustainable credentials.

But Beechwood’s aesthetic credentials are equally impressive. Whilst the range of ages and types of dwelling in this area, at the western most edge of Peppard Common, has resulted in little overwhelming design style locally, there is limited modern influence generally. By developing a contemporary design born from the narrative of the site and a re-interpretation of the vernacular buildings of South Oxfordshire, the architect has created a modern aesthetic that is visually arresting but not out of keeping.

A clear hierarchy of elements, combined with a low-slung, flat-roofed form, enables the building to nestle comfortably into the site with minimal impact on the surrounding area. In fact, the dwelling is completely obscured by the existing landscape when viewed from the south in the AONB.

An autumnal palette of materials pushes conventional design boundaries and lends itself harmoniously to the surrounding woodland setting. The delicate wrapping of glazed walls in a seemingly heavy weathered steel hood creates a balance of heavy and lightweight, dark and light, solid and transparent that is engaging to the viewer and maximizes views both through and from the house. The weathering steel ensures the appearance will soften with age and together with the dark brick looks to re-create the essence of the local black timber clad, clay tile-roofed vernacular buildings.

Commented Spratley Studios Director, Jeremy Spratley, “This project typifies Spratley Studios as a practice; we thrive on delivering a challenging brief on a challenging site and are proud to question architectural perceptions to bring new insight together with high quality contemporary design.”

Beechwood – Contemporary Oxfordshire House images / information received 030512

Spratley Studios

Location: Peppard Common, South Oxfordshire, EnglandEngland, UK

New English Architecture

Contemporary Architecture in England

English Architecture Designs – chronological list

English Houses

English Architect – design firm listings

English Hotel Buildings

Oxfordshire Buildings

English Houses

Spratley Studios – Key Projects

Blewbury Manor, North Oxfordshire, England
Blewbury Manor
photo : Nick Kane
Blewbury Manor

Wavertree Court, south London, England
Wavertree Court
image from architects
Wavertree Court

New Oxfordshire Properties – Selection

Oxfordshire House
David Chipperfield Architects
Oxfordshire Home
David Chipperfield Architects
Contemporary Oxfordshire Home

Lower Mill Estate Houses : Architecture Competition
Building by Sutherland Hussey Architects
Oxfordshire buildings
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New Oxfordshire houses

Oxfordshire Country House
Oxfordshire Country House
picture from ADAM Architecture
Oxfordshire Country House
Progressive classical house design by ADAM Architecture to replace modernist scheme in Oxfordshire.
“A pioneering classical house designed by Robert Adam has just been granted planning permission by West Oxfordshire District Council. It replaces the modernist scheme which was given permission in 2004 under the old country house policy known as “Gummer’s Law”.”

Oxfordshire Buildings – Selection

Ashmolean Museum : extension, Oxford
Rick Mather Architects
Ashmolean Museum Oxford
photograph © Andy Matthews / Rick Mather Architects
Ashmolean Museum

Bonn Square Oxford : Design Competition
Graeme Massie Architects, Edinburgh
Bonn Square Oxford
image from architects
Bonn Square

Middle East Centre Oxford, St. Antony’s College
Zaha Hadid Architects
Middle East Centre Oxford
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St. Antony’s College project

English Architecture

English Housing

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