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Stitch wins Dagenham estate regeneration contest

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Stitch has won a competition to redevelop Becontree Heath in Dagenham, east London

The practice was part of the winning Countryside Properties and Newlon Housing Trust team named by the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham as the preferred development partner.

Across six parcels of land, the proposed masterplan runs between Barking and Dagenham Civic Centre and the Becontree Health Leisure Centre and will replace a post-war housing estate.

Stitch’s designs feature 141 homes that will create a link between the leisure centre and the civic centre and connect to a 40 hectare Central Park, including new pedestrian links, landscaping, play areas and parking provision.

Sally Lewis from Stitch said: ‘What is lacking in the area is a sense of cohesion and ‘place’ and our design approach is to create new and distinctive street frontages that visually link the various disparate sites together, and reference the handsome Civic Centre building. 

‘The new homes and associated landscapes will be attractive, robust and consistent to bring a new character and identity to the area, and seamlessly integrate the new with the old.’

The architecture will take cues from the civic centre with distinctive brick details and Art Deco features.

Countryside and Newlon, together with the council, will now consult with the community and further develop the proposals before the outline planning application is submitted.


Townscape drawing showing the sites in context

Architect’s view

‘Our vision is to use the infill sites to ‘mend’ the urban realm of Becontree Heath, creating a distinctive, high quality place with its own unique character and identity. The area benefits from a network of open spaces, a popular new leisure centre, and local townscape features – particularly the Civic Centre building - all of which will combine with a new offer of family homes and front doors on the street, to create a desirable place to live.

‘The site area is beset by problems of poor legibility and a car dominated public realm. With the positive new interventions coming forward – the leisure centre in particular – a catalyst has been provided for the transformation of the space into a traditional ‘piece of town’, characterised by streets designed for all users, and framed by the active frontages of attractive new buildings accommodating high quality new homes.’

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