Record number of good housing schemes

9 September, 2010

A record 55 new housing schemes have qualified for a Building for Life standard this year, 50 per cent more than last year and the largest number in the eight years of the award.

The schemes scored more than 14 out or 20 against the Building for Life criteria, the national standard for well-designed homes and neighbourhoods. It is the first time more than half of all entries (96) achieved a standard, suggesting an overall rise in housing quality.

A total of 20 schemes qualified for a gold standard and 35 for a silver standard this year, compared to 12 gold standards and 24 silver standards last year.

The schemes suggest that housebuilders are increasingly seizing the opportunity to play a leading role in creating successful places, as well as the construction of individual homes. The concept of placemaking can be seen across all 55 schemes, regardless of their size or location.

They range from a distinctive scheme in South London with coherent private and public space to family housing at Hulton Square in Salford which provides good access to public transport and makes best use of its location near a park, primary schools and a healthcare centre.

Over half of all the schemes that achieved a Building for Life are in the South West (16) or in London (17). A self build development in Bristol, Ashley Vale, is the first scheme of its kind to achieve a Building for Life standard.

Wayne Hemingway, chair of Building for Life, said: ‘Building for Life has helped developers and planners talk the same language and by working together they’re creating far better places to live.’

Richard Simmons, CABE chief executive, said: ‘This suggests to me we might finally be starting to deliver good quality housing on a regular basis.’

Stewart Baseley, executive chairman at HBF, said: ‘A record number of standards reflects the industry’s commitment and shows recognition that quality is a driver of business.’


Building for Life standards 2010


Astor Court Plymouth  24 homes Cedar Homes Limited; Architects Design Group
Avante Maidstone  150  Crest Nicholson; Sheppard Robson
be: Newhall Essex  34 Linden Homes Eastern Ltd; Alison Brooks Architects; Galliford Try Partnership
Bolonachi Building London  138  The Hyde Group; Levitt Bernstein; Rooff Ltd
Burnhill Green Staffordshire  10 The Crown Estate; Watson, Bertran & Fell; J S Seddon Ltd
Cargo Millbay Plymouth  134 English Cities Fund; Acanthus Ferguson Mann
Claredale Street London  77 Tower Hamlets Community Housing; Karakusevic Carson Architects; Hill Partnership
 Crown Mews St Ives 13 Campbell Buchanan
Fairfield Park Bedfordshire  1200Mid Beds District Council; Tetlow King Ltd; PJ Livesey; Fairfields Redevelopments Ltd; Stamford Homes; Persimmon Homes; Bovis; Twigden Homes; Taylor Wimpey; David Wilson Homes; Miller Homes
 Falcon Works London 93  Hexagon Housing Association; Alan Camp Architects LLP; Osborne
 Friars Lane Plymouth  15 Pemberley Developments; Rogers & Haynes Architects
 Grainey's Joinery Plymouth  64 McAleer & Rushe Ltd; Lacey Hickie Caley Ltd
Mills Bakery
 Plymouth 78 Urban Splash Build; Gillespie Yunnie
OneBrighton  Brighton  172  Crest Nicholson, BioRegional Quintain; Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios; Denne Construction
 Printworks London  164  First Base; Glenn Howells Architects; Laing O’Rourke
 Rochester Row London  51  Barratt West London; Assael Architecture Ltd
 Stanmore Place London  194  St Edward Homes Ltd; Grid Architects Ltd; Berkeley Homes (Urban Renaissance) Ltd
 Stonebridge Hillside Hub London  59  The Hyde Group with Rydon Construction; Edward Cullinan Architects; REAL; Inplace
 Thornberry House London  24  Catalyst Housing Group; PCKO Architects; Willmott Dixo
 Waverley Gardens Bristol  66  Brunelcare; NOMA Architects; Leadbitter


288 Gloucester RoadBristol 10 homesSimon Crocker, Simon James New Homes Ltd; Focus on Design
Ashley Vale Self Build Development Bristol  32 Ashley Vale Action Group
Backfields Bristol  69 Knightstone Housing Association; gcp Chartered Architects; Leadbetter Construction
Baden Powell Close London  14 Southern Housing Group; Peter Barber Architects Ltd; Kier Partnership Homes Ltd
Barking CentralLondon  518 Redrow Regeneration (Barking) Ltd; London Borough of Barking & Dagenham; Allford Hall Monaghan Morris; Ardmore Group
Beaufort Park London 676 St George Central London; Broadway Malyan; Ardmore
Bow CrossLondon  226 Swan Housing Association; PRP Architects; Countryside Properties PLC (in partnership)
Brandwood End
Kings Heath 304 Waterloo Housing Association; Axis Design Architects; Frank Haslam Milan and Co Ltd; Avebury International Plc; Thomas Value Construction; Marbury Hills
Burtons Farm ParkNorth Solihull 65 West Mercia Homes Ltd; RPS Planning and Development Ltd; Bellway Homes (West Midlands Division) Ltd
Cabot Circus, Bristol Bristol 260 Bristol Alliance; Chapman Taylor LLP
Wilkinson Eyre Architects
Alec French Architects; Sir Robert McAlpine

Chatham Place
Reading  307 Muse Developments; Cartwright Pickard Architects Ltd; Ardmore Construction Ltd; Leadbitter Group
Christopher Thomas Court Bristol 54 Jephson Housing Association; AWW; E G Carter
CometaHigh Wycombe 12 Aston Homes Ltd; Richard Clark Chartered Architects; West Rose Construction Ltd
Dunchurch Road Rugby  18 Benfield Homes Ltd; HB Architects Ltd
 Evolution Cove Plymouth  58 Standerton House; The Architects Design Group
Fitzwarren Street Salford  25 Great Places Housing Group Ltd; Loop Architecture; Wates Living Space
Goodwill Drive London  159 Home Group; MEPK Architects; Willmott Dixon Housing Ltd
Grosvenor Waterside London  856 Make; Broadway Malyan; Sheppard Robson; Twigg Brown Architects; Harper Downie; Allies and Morrison Architects; Reid Architects; EPR Architects; nil; St James Urban Living
Grove House Bristol  14 The Clifton Village Development Partnership; noma architects; Chamberlain Building Contractors; Urban Creation Limited
H4 Barton HillBristol  12 Sovereign South and West; Kendall Kingscott Ltd; Leadbitter Construction
 Harris Drive Rugby  55 David Wilson Homes East Midlands
 Hulton Square Salford  73 LPC Living; Falconer Chester Hall; Dreamspace Construction
 James Place Plymouth  329  University of Plymouth; Willmore Iles Architects Ltd
 Jarvie Close Sedgeford  10  Hastoe Housing Association; Parsons & Whittley; E N Suiter & Sons Ltd
 Middletons Plymouth  11  Stevenson Homes Ltd; Rogers & Haynes Architects
 Northampton Place Slough  56  Hanover Housing Association; Archadia Chartered Architects; Feltham Construction Ltd
 Orient House Kettering  46  East Midlands Housing Association; Gordon White & Hood Ltd; Mansell Construction Services Ltd
 Parkwest Drayton 574   St George West London Ltd; PRC Architect and Planning Ltd
 Plymstock Library Plymouth  27  Signpost Housing Association; Rogers & Haynes Architects
 Queen Mary's Place London  359  St James Developments; Omega Partnership
 Robinson Building Bristol 100   Urbis Developments T/A Voramex Ltd; O'LearyGoss Architects; Urbis Build
 Spencer Place Basingstoke  291  David Wilson Homes Southern; Sovereign Housing Group; Broadway Malyan; David Wilson Homes
 St Andrew's London  194  Barratt Homes London; Allies and Morrison; Barratt Homes London
The Ledge, Fishersgate
 West Sussex 40  HydeMartlet; RH Partnership Architects; Denne Construction
 Watercolour Surrey  523  Linden Homes (SE) Ltd; John Thompson & Partners

Notes to Editors

For further information, please contact Dominy Bird at CABE on 020 7070 6772 or email or Steve Turner at the HBF on 020 7960 1606 or email Building for Life is an initiative led by CABE and the Home Builders Federation. The Building for Life standard is awarded to housebuilders and housing associations who demonstrate a commitment to high design standards, good place making and sustainable development. Housing schemes achieve the Building for Life standard if they fulfil at least 14 of the 20 criteria for a silver standard and 16 out of 20 for a gold standard. For more details about the judges please visit The 20 criteria can be found at The Home Builders Federation (HBF) is the principal representative body for private sector home builders and voice of the home building industry in England and Wales. The HBF’s 300 member firms account for some 80% of all new homes built in England and Wales in any one year, and include companies of all sizes, ranging from multi-national, household names through regionally based businesses to small local companies. CABE is the government’s advisor on architecture, urban design and public space. As a public body, we encourage policymakers to create places that work for people. We help local planners apply national design policy and offer expert advice to developers and architects. We show public sector clients how to commission buildings that meet the needs of their users. And we seek to inspire the public to demand more from their buildings and spaces. Advising, influencing and inspiring, we work to create well-designed, welcoming places.