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Revealed: The Manser Medal – AJ House of the Year shortlist

The AJ can exclusively the seven-strong shortlist of houses vying for this year’s Manser Medal 

The long-standing prize, which recognises the best completed house in the UK and was named after the renowned British architect, former RIBA president and Royal Academician Michael Manser (1929-2016) – became part of the AJ Architecture Awards earlier this year.

The eclectic mix of one-off homes ranges from a concrete and brick new-build on a farm in West Sussex to a house in south London with a Gothic-inspired roof.

Among the finalists is the Cork House by Matthew Barnett Howland with Dido Milne and Oliver Wilton, which has also been shortlisted for this year’s RIBA Stirling Prize and the 2019 Stephen Lawrence Prize. There is also a place among the final eight for Peter Zumthor’s first project in the UK – the holiday home he designed with Mole Architects for Living Architecture. 

The list is completed by schemes by Craftworks, Sophie Hicks Architects, Bureau de Change, Adam Richards Architects and CZWG Architects. 

The Manser Medal was launched in 2001 to inspire innovation in house design and began life in partnership with the AJ. The inaugural winning project was Cezary Bednarski’s 1A Merthyr Terrace in Barnes; other winners have included Mole Architects’ Black House and Skene Catling de la Peña’s Flint House in Buckinghamshire.

The Manser Medal – AJ House of the Year champions architectural excellence in a new-build or significantly extended and refurbished house. All eight finalists will be visited by an expert judging panel which includes 2015 Woman Architect of the Year Teresa Borsuk.

‘The shortlist for the Manser Medal – AJ House of the Year is a powerful list of unusual and creative schemes,’ says AJ editor Emily Booth. ‘These houses reference architectural history in a compelling way, and yet are strikingly contemporary in their use of materials. They pack a punch.’

The victor will be revealed with the other AJ Architecture Awards category winners at an exclusive gala dinner on 20 November 2019 at Exhibition London, Shepherd’s Bush.


The Manser Medal – AJ House of the Year


Chapel by Craftworks

Cw chape 0030

The Manser Medal – AJ House of the Year finalist 2019: Chapel by Craftworks

Source: Edmund Sumner

The Manser Medal – AJ House of the Year finalist 2019: Chapel by Craftworks

Cork House by Matthew Barnett Howland with Dido Milne and Oliver Wilton 

Ch aj 01

Ch aj 01

Earl’s Court House by Sophie Hicks Architects

1aecs main living area credit annabel elston

1aecs main living area credit annabel elston

Source: Annabel Elston

Long House by Bureau de Change Architects

Longhouse gilbert mccarragher 002

Longhouse gilbert mccarragher 002

Source: Gilbert McCarragher

Nithurst Farm by Adam Richards Architects

Brothertonlock109  west south

Brothertonlock109 west south

Source: Brotherton Lock

Secular Retreat by Atelier Peter Zumthor with Mole Architects 

Secular Retreat by Zumthor

Secular Retreat by Zumthor

The Stones by CZWG Architects 

01 the stones   photo credit dirk lindner

01 the stones photo credit dirk lindner

Source: Dirk Lindner


Previous winners

2001 - 1A Merthyr Terrace, Barnes, by Studio Bednarski
2002 -
 Brooke Coombes House, west London, by Burd Haward Architects
2003 - Anderson House, Fitzrovia, London, by Jamie Fobert Architects
2004 - Black House, Cambridge, by Mole Architects
2005 - Stealth House, Southwark, London, by Robert Dye Architects
2006 - Holly Barn, Norfolk Broads, by Knox Bhavan Architects
2007 - Salt Water, Blackwater, by Alison Brooks Architects
2008 - Oxley Woods, Milton Keynes, by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
2009 - Gap House, Bayswater, London, by Pitman Tozer Architects
2010 - Hunsett Mill, Norfolk Broads National Park, by ACME
2011 - Hampstead Lane, Highgate Village, London, by Duggan Morris Architects
2012 - Maison L, Versailles, France, by Christian Pottgiesser, Architecturespossibles
2013 - Slip House, Brixton, London, by Carl Turner Architects
2014 - Stormy Castle, Gower, Wales, by Loyn & Co Architects
2015 - Flint House, Waddesdon, Buckinghamshire, by Skene Catling de la Peña
2016 - Outhouse, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire, by Loyn & Co Architects
2017 - House in Coombe Park, Kingston, London, by Eldridge London
2018 - Red House, Southwark, London, by 31/44 Architects