Architect: Annie Martin Architect
Client: James & Melissa Brooks Warner
awards won:  riba south west award
riba south west emerging architect of the year

Set within the Dartmoor National Park, Westering is a modest three-bedroomed house for a newly retired couple, within the garden of their now too large former home.

It is a shining example of what happens when a young architect, having cut her teeth in various practices here and abroad, and now working alone from home and raising two young children, gets a commission and gives it her all.

The house has a very simple and legible layout, with lower ground floor sunk into the sloping site on three sides providing south-facing bedroom spaces set back beneath an oversailing upper level, which appears as a single-storey house set beneath a zinc-clad pitched roof, providing open plan living space. Walls are clad in cedar and lower retaining structures (together with masonry fireplace) are in a local granite block.

The house feels almost like a 1960s design, with an optimism and simplicity that marries with down-to-earth detailing, avoiding the ‘look no hands’, vanity detailing of chic urban houses.

The clients are utterly delighted with their new home and keen to praise their architect. The husband, an engineer, has enjoyed working on the energy generation aspects, so much so, that the house runs in credit. 

CONTRACTOR: RM Builders & Contractors

COST: £450,000

PHOTOGRAPHER: nigel rigden