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Hodge lists 1960s Birkin Haward's family home


Architecture Minister Margaret Hodge has decided to grant a Grade II-listing to Birkin Haward’s (1912-2002) family home in Ipswich

The 1960 ‘concrete post and timber construction’ house, known as The Spinney, was put forward for an urgent spot listing by The Twentieth Century Society in June (see below) when proposals emerged to replace it with a 50-bedroom care home and flats.

English Heritage (EH) agreed and recommended that the Minister give the house heritage protection stating that it was ‘of high architectural quality’ and demonstrated an ‘uninhibited approach to architectural expression in its imaginative and accomplished use of materials, its intelligent approach to planning and innovative layout.’

The full EH report is attached (see right)

It is not known how the developer and its design team WKP Architects plans to approach the site. Intriguingly 76 per cent of AJ online viewers thought the building should be listed.

Previous story (11.06.09)

English Heritage urged to list Haward family home

The Twentieth Century Society has called on English Heritage to urgently spot list modernist architect Birkin Haward’s (1912-2002) family home

The ‘concrete post and timber construction’ house in Ipswich (built in 1960) could be flattened if plans to replace it with a 50-bedroom care home and flats are approved.

Haward was best known for his post-war schools and work with Mendelsohn and Chermayeff on the 1930s De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill.

His sons, namesake Birkin Haward of practice van Heyningen and Haward and brother Bill – also an architect – have written to Ipswich Borough Council in a bid to block the application. The letter reads: ‘We and others consider the house to be of such significant architectural interest as to merit its retention.

‘While there is a direct connection as our father was the architect, we feel the building’s intrinsic value is important to the local community and beyond. The current exhibition of his work at the Ipswich Borough Council Town Hall Galleries, while dealing with his wider artistic output, is an indication of this merit.’

Intriguingly, although the house in Westerfield Road was turned down for listed status in 2003, the local authority has now slapped a Building Preservation Notice on the home.

The move has come as a surprise to local practice WKP Architects which is behind the latest plans. Practice founder Mark Wincer said: ‘We made pre-application enquiries with the council in 2008 before finalising our planning application.

‘We have been informed that the design team, including the Conservation Officer, were involved.

‘The issue about possible new representation for listing was not raised.

He added: ‘We are concerned therefore that a Building Preservation Notice has been issued by the council this late in the planning process.’


Readers' comments (4)

  • Shouldn't we all chip in and buy them a tumble dryer? I know there's a credit crunch but that hanging laundry is ridiculous.

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  • Can't afford that much - but might manage a bathroom clothes airer from Wilko's if this would help them out.

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  • Good news. Hoorah.

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  • Great news. I was lucky enough to live there for a few months as a student and will always be grateful to the Hawards for the opportunity. Enchanting Architects house, even has a geodesic dome in the garden.

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