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Duggan Morris wins Manser Medal 2011

An ‘ingenious’ remodelling of a 1960s house in Highgate has won the 2011 RIBA Manser Medal for the best new house or major extension in the UK

Duggan Morris Architects was handed the £10,000 first prize for its re-design and renovation of the home in Hampstead Lane at a ceremony in London tonight (10 November). Read the AJ’s Manser supplement here

Originally built in 1968 by an architect couple who lived and worked there until 1992, this Brutalist-style house in north London had undergone unsympathetic renovation and faced demolition until it was spotted by the current owners, Graham Stirk of Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners and AHMM associate director Susie Le Good. The couple commissioned Duggan Morris Architects to entirely redesign the interior of the house, the garden and roof garden and to restore other details of the building (see AJ 17.02.2011).

According to the judges of the annual medal - which was celebrates Briatin’s best ‘one-off’ houses and was again sponsored by the HSBC Private Bank - the practice had ‘created a delightful contemporary home with a strong connection between the living spaces, main garden and roof garden’.

The architects took out two main supporting cross walls - and the ‘maze of rooms’ within them - replacing them with steel beams and columns to create more space in both the main living area and master bedroom, which now look straight on to the gardens.

This is truly a house of both its time and of the moment

Windows and doors were carefully renovated and redesigned and the concrete walls re-exposed to celebrate the original house’s design.

Speaking about the winning building Angela Brady, President of the RIBA, said:’Hampstead Lane has been a labour of love for both architect and client. It ‘touches the earth lightly’, adopting and encouraging the principles of sustainable design by re-using instead of demolishing.

‘The architects have ingeniously reconfigured the house to create flexible, multi-purpose rooms to suit changing lifestyles at the same time as restoring the detailing of the house back to its modernist roots. In Michael Manser’s summation: this is truly a house of both its time and of the moment.’

Duggan Morris picks up the Manser Medal 2011

Duggan Morris picks up the Manser Medal 2011



See images and drawings of Duggan Morris’ winning Hampstead Lane and all the shortlisted projects in the AJ Buildings Library

The shortlisted schemes:

New Mission Hall by Adam Richards Architects

The Balancing Barn by MVRDV

Watson House by John Pardey Architects

House in Epsom by Eldrige Smerin Architects

Ty-Hedfan by Featherstone Young

Previous winners of the RIBA Manser Medal include Acme for Hunsett Mill (2010), Pitman Tozer Architects for The Gap House (2009), Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners for Oxley Woods (2008) and Alison Brooks Architects for the Salt House (2007). This year’s judges were: Michael Manser CBE, architect; Friedrich Ludewig, architect with ACME; Peter Mackie, Managing Director of Property Vision (a subsidiary of HSBC Private Bank); Tony Chapman, Hon FRIBA, RIBA Head of Awards; and Jo van Heyningen from Heyningen and Haward.

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