Hanover’s Buccleuch House wins unanimous approval
Published by Rob Ghosh for Hanover Housing Group in Housing and also in Care and Support, Communities
The London Borough of Hackney has granted planning consent for the redevelopment of Buccleuch House situated by Clapton Common, close to Stamford Hill in the north-east corner of the borough. Hanover Housing Association has been trying to obtain planning consent for what is now a derelict building since 2005.
The key to securing planning was the new partnership formed by Hanover with Hill Residential and Agudas Israel Housing Association (AIHA), an excellent design being prepared and the extensive consultation with the local community. It will see the building of a total of 107 new apartments including an extra care facility. The project is unusual as it will be split into three distinct parts of the building, harmonised externally through an attractive contemporary design.
Hanover will provide an exemplary Extra Care facility of forty-one 1&2 bedroom flats for older people. These will be offered at social rent and will be designed to allow the living space to be flexible to adapt to the residents needs as highlighted in the governments HAPPI report (Housing our Aging Population: Panel for Innovation). This part of the development will incorporate community rooms with the focus on health and wellbeing services, a hairdressing salon, and foyer area with café facilities for people to meet and relax.
AIHA will provide thirteen shared ownership and fifteen affordable rent homes of 1 to 4 bedrooms for orthodox Jewish families in the area. Hill Residential will provide thirty-eight 1, 2 and 3 bedroom luxury apartments for private sale.
Hanover, Hill Residential and AIHA set architects, Levitt Bernstein, a design brief to encompass the three distinct requirements:
• The building will not distinguish externally between affordable and private units.
• High quality contemporary architecture appropriate to the prominent site.
• A high proportion of family homes for AIHA to reflect the need of the local orthodox Jewish community
• Maximising light and views for all apartments
• Active frontages at ground level
• Separately managed and accessed parts for each area, yet with the building reading externally as an integrated whole
• Minimising the impact of the new building on neighbouring properties including privacy and daylight
• All of the Extra Care apartments to be fully wheelchair accessible.
• All homes to be designed to achieve:
o Code for Sustainable Homes
o London Housing Design Guide Standards or BREAM very good.
o Lifetime Homes Standard
• Overall development to achieve Secured by Design Certification
Conceptually the new development will be a ‘building of three halves’ to reflect the different usages and cultures. For example, all balconies share the same materials and aesthetic but with discreet differences. The balconies for private sale units are simply stacked above each other. The centrally located AIHA units have staggered balconies to ensure all have a view to the sky, a requirement for the Sukkot festival. The Extra Care apartments have the same balcony as the others but also have an added glazed enclosure turning them into winter-gardens.
A high quality landscape will revitalise the protected London Square adjacent to Clapton Common and a shared route across the front of the building will offer access to both residents and the general public. Mature trees to the front add screening and a layer of privacy.
Hill’s Development Director, Jamie Hunter, said, “The key to the success of obtaining planning, which was unanimous, was the close working relationship we enjoyed with the local community, the support and guidance from the planning and housing departments as well as the tripartite partnership between Hill, Hanover and AIHA. We can now focus on regenerating and rebreathing life into this site that has been an eyesore for so many years.”
Hanover’s Head of Operations, David Hanks, said, “As a result of this planning consent we will at last be able to realise our objective of meeting the local need for extra care housing. It is a great scheme that will provide future residents with exemplary homes.”
And Ita Symons, of Agudas said, ”At long last we can see much needed affordable housing being developed in the heart of our Community.”
The new build is planned to start in March this year following demolition of the existing building. The extra care element is due to be ready by September 2014 with the whole project completing in December 2014.