Biscoe + Stanton produced Stage D planning and construction design for a stylish mix of refurbished and new build homes for Durkan at The Royal Military Academy, Woolwich. Original buildings date back to the early part of the 19th century and were designed by James Wyatt in a castellated Tudor style with deep buff-red facing brickwork and stone dressings, the central block being inspired by The White Tower in the Tower of London with large octagonal curved corner towers jutting up above the fine terraced form of the two- and three-storey buildings. Cadets were given training here in science and mathematics.

After the Second World War it fell into considerable dereliction until Durkan purchased it 10 years ago. New build three-storey elements form a marked contrast in buff brick and timber, with heights and location of these new build elements carefully controlled to preserve views of the original, now Grade II* listed, buildings. The new buildings are designed in a series of elevational planes using timber screening, black weatherboarding and brickwork, giving a simple clean appearance but with a sympathetic rhythm to the original buildings close by.

Interiors are stylish in both refurbished and new build elements, the larger floor to ceiling heights of the refurbished buildings giving opportunities to create some exciting spaces, with variation in heights by insertion of mezzanine levels. The landscaping cleverly complements the scheme, with yesterday’s quadrangles and parade grounds developed into sympathetic landscaped spaces.



What House Awards 2016 Best Development: Silver