These architect-designed new-build homes on Hindmans Yard in East Dulwich combine their industrial heritage with contemporary interiors 

Words: Victoria Purcell 

We really like our designs to continue the story of a place,’ says Will Lomas, Director of Foster Lomas architects, which has created four new-build houses in East Dulwich. The architect-led development of three terraced and one detached house reference the origins of their location, Hindmans Yard, not only in the industrial palette of materials used (think stainless steel and polished concrete), but also in retaining some of the original walls.

‘Leaving those old brick boundary walls around the site makes the courtyards feel grounded,’ says Will of the former yard, which was also once occupied by craftsmens’ studios. ‘You can see all the history in the marks and paint colours from each old studio.

‘The homes continue the Victorian brick detailing from the neighbouring houses but in a contemporary manner, all of which we hope adds to the rich history,’ he continues.

The practice has crafted the homes to an impressively high standard following Scandinavian building requirements, which are strict when it comes to things like insulation. Craftsmen were also employed to help finish the properties with details like perforated steel screens and dog-tooth exterior brick detailing.
Accommodation in the terraced houses includes an open-plan kitchen/dining room with full-height, full-width glazed sliding doors, leading on to a private garden.


The homes continue the Victorian brick detailing from the neighbouring houses but in a contemporary manner

The kitchens feature bespoke ‘floating’ units designed by the architects themselves, plus there are heated, polished concrete floors throughout by Steyson, the celebrated concrete firm which has also worked on the Tate Modern and Gagosian galleries. A bespoke staircase leads up to the first floor, where there are three bedrooms and a family bathroom (the master bedroom has an en suite shower area). Skylights and unusually high ceiling heights ensure that these are light, bright spaces, and the bathrooms are finished with Calacatta tumbled marble.

Not only is Foster Lomas a highly-regarded, award-winning architecture practice (it was selected by Wallpaper* magazine as one of the 25 most innovative architectural practices in the world in 2005), but both Will Foster and Greg Lomas live very close to Hindmans Yard, so the carefully-crafted project has particular significance for them.

‘We hand delivered letters to all the residents explaining our vision,’ says Will, ‘and because we are local we understood the need to be inclusive. We were spurred on by the terrible level of design of new builds generally in London and wanted to show how well-designed homes are possible on sites such as this.’ Sustainability was another priority: ‘We originally planned to have no central heating but in the end were advised the market isn’t quite ready!’ says Will.

It is, however, ready for organic roofs and rainwater harvesting: ‘Sustainability is just building right for tomorrow. You’re asking people if they’d like to save money, live in healthy homes and save the planet… it’s a no brainer.’

The homes, priced £925,000-£995,000, are on the market with themodernhouse.net