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Hyde + Hyde wins go-ahead for 'quietly monumental' house

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Hyde + Hyde Architects has won planning permission for this 250m² home in Penarth, south west of Cardiff

The Cardiff and Amsterdam-based practice said the scheme - known as Pryde House - had been designed to be isolated from its surroundings and a retreat from ‘the busy city life’. The home sits among an ‘all encompassing reflecting pool’.

Speaking about the project Hyde + Hyde director Kristian Hyde said: ‘Our aim was to create a home with a quiet monumentality that holds life within.

‘The fair faced concrete façade looking onto the street scene is intentionally ‘mute’. Keeping things simple avoids additional visual noise, that would otherwise compete with the existing styles on the street.’

Due to the exposed condition of the Pryde House site the architect proposed using a building material which could endure constant erosion from wind and rain.

In a statement the practice said: ‘The finish of the concrete is fair-faced giving the impression that the form of the house has been honed with precision over time, by its environment, like a smooth pebble found on a nearby beach. The concrete provides a sense of mass, solidity and protection from the elements.’

The rooms in the new home have been positioned to take into account the locations of the sun in relation to the activities which are undertaken throughout the day. The living space is formed on the footprint of the previous house, among a shallow pool, reinforcing a feeling of privacy and isolation.

The house also includes full height glazing in most rooms to take advantage of the self created low maintenance garden environment outside.

The architect has also featured the weather in Wales in its designs: ‘The new home considers the predictability of the Welsh rain and responds to this with overhangs and cantilevers giving natural protection within a dynamic form.

‘The living room becomes a ‘sun trap’ to the South, and allow occupants to follow the sun around the home during the day.’

Pryde House street view

Project data

Location Penarth, Cardiff
Type of project single residential dwelling
Client private
Architect Hyde + Hyde Architects
M&E consultant Melin Energy
Structural Engineer: kPa Consulting Engineers Ltd
Main contractor TBC
Funding private
Tender date March 2014
Start on site date April 2014
Gross internal floor area 250m²


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