Heritage housing developer Patterson Homes asked Lyndon Goode Architects to seek planning and listed building consent for conversion of this former church from commercial (B1) to residential use (C3), and to revisit a previous design that had resulted in permission for nine dwellings.
We produced exemplary documents, including a detailed Design and Access Statement outlining the process, analysis and design principals guiding our thinking, and providing information on scale, heritage and appearance. Through a detailed 3D-analysis of the internal volumes and interfaces between existing windows and proposed floor-plates, we managed to achieve an efficient, augmented scheme of 19 spacious, high-end homes within a footprint little-changed from the permitted scheme.
A contemporary extension at the building’s rear replaces a brick-clad elevation, significantly improving the appearance of the development. The reinvention of this building offered an opportunity to conserve a landmark structure while providing high-quality, unique homes in an economically viable scheme.
Wycliffe House is an Art Nouveau Gothic church with a varied history spanning over 100 years. Built in 1901 by PW Dixon as a place of worship, it later became a theatre before its 1990s conversion into offices. In line with current trends, it became difficult to let and had stood empty for some time prior to our involvement.
This complex project involved sensitive repairs to the heritage red brick, stone, timber and terracotta building fabric, and the demolition and re-building of the rear extension. Conversion into residential units has extended the life of the building and reinvigorated a unique feature of the local high street.
We balanced the need to create compliant, high-quality homes against the requirement to protect and celebrate the building’s characterful heritage assets. These two needs sometimes coincided: an additional mezzanine level increases living space and permits residents a tactile relationship with the dramatic roof structure, and creates a double-height space with full view of the arched windows’ terracotta tracery. A new void through the centre of the church allows appreciation of the building’s uninterrupted volume.
These buildings meet the requirements of the London Housing Design Guide, Redbridge Development Management Local Plan, Lifetime Homes, Part M of the Building Regulations and the Wheelchair Housing Checklist.
The church’s proximity to its neighbours – a two-storey commercial/residential building to the south, and a four-storey office building to the north – depleted daylighting to the church’s lower ground floor flats. By maintaining a tall floor-to-ceiling height, light from the church windows can penetrate deeper into the space, improving light levels in comparison to the former consented scheme.
The proposal was designed to ensure no loss of privacy to properties within and around the development. Retaining the hammered glass to the angled windows facing the rear terraces, and creating an angled bay window to the north east of the rear block directs views away from neighbouring flats within the church.