Guildford House

Client: Private

Rowley Cottage sits at the end of White Lane, two miles from the centre of Guildford. The site is elevated with an open aspect to the south.

The design arose out of detailed discussions with the client and their desire to combine local distinctiveness with contemporary elements. The starting point was the importance of the view and the desire to place the main living spaces at a point on the site that would optimise the outlook. The idealised location became a generator, expressed in the design as a pavilion set on a plinth to which other elements are attached.

Our inspiration was the casual grouping of farm buildings in the locality. Their fragmented yet cohesive quality seemed a good model for a dwelling in this location.

The orientation of the new dwellings enables a high degree of passive solar gain which significantly reduces the heating load. Windows are designed to provide a good level of natural daylight, reducing energy demand for lighting. All internal light fittings were low energy lights, using tubular fluorescent, compact fluorescent and LED lamps.

The design of the house was linked to extensive landscaping and a scheme, designed by Churchman Landscape Architects, which successfully negotiates the steep terrain.