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Farrer Huxley Associates

Farrer Huxley Associates (FHA) was founded in 1995 by Noel Farrer, a Trustee and Board member for the Landscape Institute, a Past President of the Landscape Institute and current member of the Government’s Design Advisory Panel for new housing development. The practice was founded upon the belief that landscape makes an essential contribution to sociable and sustainable communities, and today FHA employs over 20 Landscape Architects and designers.

As a team we have a diverse range of skills; from planting design through to environmental expertise and placemaking. Whilst everyone on the team has their individual strengths, what unites us is an absolute commitment to people-centred design. We pride ourselves on creating holistic, sustainable landscapes which are loved by the people who use them. Central to our success is collaboration: by placing local communities at the centre of our design process FHA has built a strong reputation for engaging and enabling. This, combined with the team’s wide-reaching expertise, has helped FHA to create a number of nationally recognized, award winning schemes over the years. These landscapes have been so successful because they integrate individual and community needs with environmental and social constraints. This has created landscapes which will serve communities for years to come.

St John’s Hill

The existing Peabody development, just a stone’s throw from Clapham Junction Station, will be transformed into a thriving mixture tenure community with vibrant, high quality external spaces and dramatically improved connections to the wider area. Burridge Gardens will deliver high quality public realm including a range of innovative open spaces with unique playable character including a central public open space, a promenade, entrance plazas and shared surfaces alongside semi-private residential courtyards, an ecological terrace and private gardens. Sense of place is created through the formation of new legible streets and key movement links supported by a range of distinct external character spaces. FHA undertook substantial consultation with residents to ensure the public realm is safe, accessible and welcoming for the enjoyment of this community.

One of the main character areas of the scheme is Danvers Avenue a new north-south pedestrian and cycle route that will dramatically enhance permeability through the site and provide flexible, shared space for informal community activities, incidental play and socialising. The new public open space ‘Monarch Square’ will be more than just a setting for the housing development and community facilities; it will be an exciting new platform for urban activities and events. The design draws on the sites historic connections with lavender fields to provide a distinct identity for the new development.

 

The Deptford Project

 

Market Yard is a new public space in the heart of Deptford, London, incorporating the restored carriage ramp and arches, the oldest railway structure in London. The 14 arches are now home to artisanal businesses, and the ramp will soon provide public access to the rebuilt station. The yard itself hosts a pop-up food market, complementing the existing local street market.

The project Ambitions:

• Rich mix of old and new
• New public place contributing to social, cultural and economic character
• Funded by cross-subsidy from the wider Deptford Project, including 132 new apartments at Octavius House and St. Paul’s House
• New life for redundant structure
This public space forms part of the wider Deptford Project, which includes the rebuilt station, new adjacent Octavius House designed and conversion of St Paul’s House transforming Deptford town centre and strengthening its distinctive local character.

The Carriage Ramp was previously derelict and unsafe, and the area was closed to the public. There are three main parts to its transformation into Market Yard.

1. The carriage ramp.
Completed in 1835, the ramp was first built as a means for carriages to reach the station. With the support of the Railway Heritage Trust, the fabric has been restored and made weather-tight and the surface has been repaved with high quality dutch paviours. Low planters have been designed into the ramp with bench seating and fine mesh balustrades have been added to the sides of the ramp. The planters and other metalwork are of Cor-ten steel which complements the tones of the brickwork and paviours. A small newly-built lower portion of the ramp provides a new meaningful connection from the High Street to the existing Carriage Way. PTE complemented the traditional structure and materials, with a steel bridge defining the old and new sections and allowing pedestrian access through the site to the adjacent Douglas Square market and Albany Theatre. The restored ramp provides a grand entrance to Octavius House and will soon provide access to the station at platform level.

2. The arches
The arches below the ramp were used originally to store the passengers’ carriages and horses. Later they became locomotive and carriage works, a use that was short-lived, for after 1851 all railway repair work was moved to Ashford. In the Second World War the arches were opened-up as air-raid shelters. New shopfronts have been inserted into the restored arches. These feature robust English oak cladding, and doors, set into portal frames, which convert into security shutters after hours. Vertical signage is cleverly incorporated when the doors are open. Internally there has been minimal intervention, with the original brick left exposed including various alterations that were made during the war when the arches were used for shelter.

3. Market yard
The yard itself has been transformed.  What we found in 2012 was a pitied and run down backwater where the businesses plied their trade despite the yard and its condition. The comprehensive repaving, new drainage and lighting all done in robust materials balances the vernacular of the past, through use of sympathetic quality materials with a forward and optimistic future, by the use of ‘Corten’ Steel and subtle contemporary detailing and design. The final piece is the planted soft seating edge and the 6 large trees that have introduced to just enough nature, seasonal change and summer shade to this edgy and exciting place. The real success is the choreography of the retention of existing businesses and attracting appropriate new. The new vibrancy has been almost immediate yet the effect will be lasting.

Stratheden – 34 Bishops Avenue

This BALI award winning scheme is a prestigious private garden in one of London’s most exclusive roads, within a conservation area.

The design has juxtaposed the Dutch influence of the gables and striking green roof tiles of the house with a formal contemporary Italian water garden, a raised terrace and an attractive planting scheme that draws it all together.  This project demonstrates a keen eye for detail, beautiful planting as well as technical expertise on the podium design. Hidden behind the house, the garden covers the underground pool, gym, spa and cinema. The design uses the site’s morphology to enclose an Italian water garden linking the main house with the spa and wrapping it in exuberantly planted edges with an upper lawn and terrace. The effect is a refined place for contemplation, but equally the space can easily accommodate a dinner party or soiree. The planting provides year round structure and interest as well as breathtaking splashes of colour and interest. The garden is deceptive with a staff cottage taking advantage of the upper terrace and circulation paths providing opportunities to take journeys around the garden capturing the different views, vistas and details. The client wishes in the future to place art in the garden which will further enrich these walks.

Landscape Architect – Farrer Huxley Associates
Architect – BPP Architects
Contractor – Blakedown Landscapes
Construction completion – 2014

East Blackburn Learning Community, Blackburn

Client – Blackburn and Darwen Borough Council
Architect – Nicholas Hare Architects LLP

Farrer Huxley Associates have been responsible for the landscape design for this new build secondary school developed under the ‘Building Schools for the Future’ programme by Balfour Beatty in Blackburn. The design integrates the new building, public access and all sports facilities into a cascading site that provides drama and a strong sense of place for the whole school.

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