riba awards

The Paise






The Paise Newton Architects 1

ARCHITECT: NEwton Architects

CLIENT: Private


RIBA north east ProjeCT aRCHITECT the Year 2016 - sponsored by tarmac, 

riba north east sUSTAINABILITY aWARD 2016 -  sponsored by sika


‘You should read the brief, it’s like a piece of poetry.’

These were the opening words from Newton Architects to the jury’s walk around the Paise, which in plan form appears to be an organised arrangement around a traditional sheltered courtyard. It is in fact also a circular journey around a new winter garden creating internal spaces rich in variety, delight and surprise as panoramic views open up moving through the house.

The clients - a writer and sculptor - provided the inspiration through the briefing process after selecting Newton Architects following an invited competition. After 18 months of planning discussions, approval was granted under Planning PPS7 paragraph 11, an approval only awarded to buildings of ‘exceptional quality’.

This is a sensory home and would be as dramatic in a storm as it would be in fine weather. Within the exposed setting of the North Pennine moorlands, the scheme comprises the careful refurbishment of an existing 19th Century barn. Against this backdrop a new stealthy, heavily-insulated steel-framed addition hugs the ground. The grassy landscape wraps over the roof, burying the mass. Generous expanses of glazing frame stunning views to the moorlands from generous living spaces, a kitchen/dining area, a writer’s studio, snug and games room. A large swimming pool discretely completes the entrance courtyard and provides a link to another existing cottage.

Energy for the house including the pool’s electrical systems is generated via ground source heat pumps, photovoltaics and a wind turbine. Measured data from the first year of occupancy has resulted in the building being rated carbon negative, with surplus site electricity being fed back to the national grid. Passive strategies include high levels of insulation, improved air tightness and even passive cooling for the wine cellar.

The architect has shown admirable resilience and vision through a complicated planning and construction process. This building is the product of a lifetime of experience. The result is a contemporary family home, which truly takes its inspiration from the setting and carefully respects both the original stone barn and sweeping landscape. It is not only site sensitive, internally rich and striking but also exemplary in its approach to sustainable architecture.

CONTRACTOR:  Cubby Construction Ltd and Bewley & Scott Ltd

STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS: David Narro Associates

M&E ENGINEERS: Warmcall Ltd
LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTS: Alistair W Baldwin Associates



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