Blewbury Manor, North Oxfordshire Home, Property, England, Design, Project

Blewbury Manor : North Oxfordshire House

Renewal of Historic English Residence – design by Spratley Studios, UK

8 Dec 2010

Blewbury Manor, North Oxfordshire


Commendation for Spratley Studios in RIBA South Awards

RIBA South has awarded Henley-based architect Spratley Studios with a commendation in its Conservation Awards. The accolade was received for work on Blewbury Manor, North Oxfordshire, involving the extension and remodeling of this Grade II Listed manor house. Key innovations included a bespoke, curved glass atrium designed to revitalise an existing courtyard and internally, the first wholly glass staircase, including a glass structure, to be installed in the UK.

Blewbury Manor North Oxfordshire house

Photos: Nick Kane

For 2010 the emphasis for the Conservation Awards was on the alteration and extension of existing buildings and RIBA South received twenty-four entries in total.

Blewbury Manor North Oxfordshire house

Commented Spratley Studios Director, Jeremy Spratley, “Praise from other RIBA is particularly gratifying and is affirmation of our vision for Blewbury Manor. Our client’s brief was to create a modern family space and we have done this by fusing medieval values with the integrity of new technology. We have enhanced this listed building as a forward-looking piece of its time.”

Blewbury Manor North Oxfordshire house

Spratley Studios worked creatively to find a 21st century solution to the client’s requirement for a contemporary and practical method of family living, whilst respectfully re-interpreting the original space. Spanning the courtyard with this double-glazed, high tech glass roof created a remarkable feature within the building’s historic core. The transparency optimises the natural light and allows the original walls to remain in full view, creating an inside outside quality to the new internal space.

In their comments the RIBA South judges remarked on a number of key points: “From the outside one is not aware of the modern infill except with a view from raised ground to the rear of the house.”

“An existing courtyard has had minor outbuilding structures cleared away and a very contemporary and beautifully detailed insertion of a modern kitchen and glass staircase creating a link between previously inaccessible outbuildings, and reorganising the circulation within that part of the house.”

Blewbury Manor North Oxfordshire property

Spratley Studios’ role in renovating Blewbury Manor included the provision of full architectural and administration services, as well as acting as lead consultant. Whilst the glass structures for the house were commissioned using top-quality glass technicians from Venice, a commitment to the local economy resulted in the employment of only local specialised craftsmen, as well as using locally sourced reclaimed materials wherever possible.

Environmental concerns were high on the agenda with an introduction of a ground-source heat pump providing heating and hot water supply through the property. Supplementary power is provided by solar panels.

Blewbury Manor North Oxfordshire property interior

Spratley Studios

Spratley Studios is a practice of creative architects and designers based in Henley-on-Thames, Oxon. The practice has a diverse project base including unique one-off private builds, commercial residential, business park development, leisure industry and educational sector. A fundamental belief in the value of good design inspires us to test and challenge the opportunities of each project. This approach has resulted in the practice receiving a variety of awards including two of our offices being regionally shortlisted for the British Council of Offices Award in 2008 and 2009.

Spratley Studios Awards

Goodwood Rise
RIBA Ibstock Downland Prize: Best Small Project 2005

Cherrytree Barn
RIBA South Conservation Award: Commendation 2006
RIBA Ibstock Downland Prize: Shortlisted 2006

174 Milton Park
RIBA Ibstock Downland Prize: Shortlisted 2007

St. Francis Chapel
Sussex Heritage Award: Public Building Winner 2007
NMT: Nursery Design Winner 2007

South 60
BCO: Southeast Regional Shortlisted 2008

BCO: Southeast Regional Shortlisted 2008

Blewbury Manor
Grand Design finalist 2009
Ibstock Downland Prize: Conservation Extension Winner 2009
RIBA South Conservation Awards : Commendation 2010

BCO: Southwest Regional Shortlisted 2009

North Oxfordshire House image / information from Spratley Studios

Location: Blewbury, North Oxfordshire

Oxford Architecture Designs – chronological list

Oxford Architecture – Selection

Middle East Centre, St. Antony’s College
Zaha Hadid Architects
University of Oxford Building

University College Boathouse
Belsize Architects
University College Boathouse

Oxfordshire House – design by David Chipperfield Architects

English Houses

Oxford Architectural Tours

Lower Mill Estate Homes Oxford

Queen’s College Oxford Library

Oxford Boathouse

Corpus Christi College Oxford

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