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Deadline looms for Barratt and AJ Future Homes competition

Architects have until 16 June to register for an ‘overwhelmingly popular’ contest to design the home of the future

The Future Homes competition asks UK-based architects, architectural designers and architectural and design firms to consider what homeowners will want in five to 10 years’ time and design a bold and innovative house in response which will appeal to the mass market.

Barratt Homes have extended the registration date for the contest until next Tuesday (16 June) due to ‘overwhelming demand’. The closing date for entry submissions is 31 July 2015.

The winner will be awarded a cash sum to cover competition submission costs of up to £20,000. The housebuilder will then work with the individual or organisation to develop and build a prototype home, paying additional fees of up to £20,000.

Three outstanding runners-up will receive special commendations for their designs and Barratt Homes will offer a cash sum to cover competition submission fees of up to £10,000 each. The developer may also commission some or all of the runners-up to develop prototypes, paying additional fees of up to £10,000 each.

Both winners and runners-up will be publicised by Barratt Homes and the AJ.

Barratt group sales and marketing director Jeremy Hipkiss said: ‘Household formation is changing and consumer tastes are evolving, driven by changing lifestyles and technology.

‘Barratt want to harness the creativity and innovation of the architectural profession to respond to these trends into the next decade. This is an exciting project that could influence housebuilding for years to come.’

AJ editor Rory Olcayto said: ‘Housing has become one of the defining issues of our age and this exciting contest is about ensuring that the homes of 2020 and 2025 are cutting-edge yet built to last.

‘One of Britain’s top housebuilders is looking for Britain’s best architectural talent to rethink how the typical home is laid out, how it responds to its environment and how it interacts with the latest technology. The very best design will then be constructed.’

Those wishing to pre-register their interest should email the following details to 2020s-homes@barrattplc.co.uk

  • Your name, UK postal address, phone number
  • Your professional qualifications
  • Whether you will be entering as an individual or on behalf of a practice. If the latter, the name of the company, number of employees and confirmation that you have approval to enter on the company’s behalf.


Readers' comments (3)

  • A few tips from the Dark Side. The roof MUST be pitched. Architect + flat roof = leak. Red clay bricks MUST be used. Architect + novel cladding = leak. Internal floor area MUST be Parker Morris MINUS 10% in order to achieve a minimum density of 40 units per hectare. Why? Because that's the number put into the appraisal when the developer bought the land. Oh... and windows MUST be cheap white or brown plastic. No fancy-priced Swedish triple glazing if you please. As for the internal layout - well, let your imagination run wild.

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  • Agreed, Peter Bill, and don't forget to show the water in front of the houses receding, not flooding, as will more likely be the case. It looks to me like it's still rising in the leader.

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  • Ben Derbyshire

    It would be a real shame if this significant initiative from Barratt were to be received with anything other than interest and enthusiasm from the profession.

    Many architects have been working for years to persuade homebuilders of the value of good design and the record of awards success (including Derwenthorpe illustrated above) testifies to the progress being made here. But the negative response routinely offered by the profession sets us back because it's so unnecessarily antagonistic. A lot of spec housing is poor but not all of it is and it is inappropriate and unhelpful to tar all developers with the same brush.

    The housing currently being developed without the benefit of input from architects represents huge upside marketing potential for architects. But we are never going to get anywhere near it as a profession in order to both improve, and profit from, its design so long as we set ourselves at loggerheads with the house builders.

    Well done Rory Olcayto and the AJ for attracting Barratt to collaborate on the initiative. The opportunity might well have gone to the RIBA were it not for the relentlessly negative message of its HomeWise campaign. We need better designed homes and this is an opportunity for architects to show how.

    Ben Derbyshire
    Managing Partner HTA Design LLP
    Chair, The Housing Forum.

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