Architecture

RIBA House of the Year longlist showcases amazing British design

RIBA House of the Year longlis...
The Modern Oast is one of the projects highlighted in the 2021 RIBA House of the Year. Located in Kent, it was designed by ACME and is inspired by the traditional local buildings once used to dry hops
The Modern Oast is one of the projects highlighted in the 2021 RIBA House of the Year. Located in Kent, it was designed by ACME and is inspired by the traditional local buildings once used to dry hops
View 20 Images
Kyle House is designed by Groves-Raines Architects and is located in Sutherland, Scotland. The project involved transforming a derelict structure into a stunning rural cottage
1/20
Kyle House is designed by Groves-Raines Architects and is located in Sutherland, Scotland. The project involved transforming a derelict structure into a stunning rural cottage
Corner House was designed by 31/44 Architects and is located in London. The firm created a new terraced house that fits in superbly with its local surroundings
2/20
Corner House was designed by 31/44 Architects and is located in London. The firm created a new terraced house that fits in superbly with its local surroundings
Devon Passivhaus was designed by McLean Quinlan and is located in Devon. It's situated inside the garden of an old mansion and has been designed to be both sympathetic to its local surroundings and extremely energy efficient
3/20
Devon Passivhaus was designed by McLean Quinlan and is located in Devon. It's situated inside the garden of an old mansion and has been designed to be both sympathetic to its local surroundings and extremely energy efficient
Grain House was designed by Hayhurst & Co Architects and is located in London. It involved remodeling and extending an existing family home, opening it up to improve natural light and views
4/20
Grain House was designed by Hayhurst & Co Architects and is located in London. It involved remodeling and extending an existing family home, opening it up to improve natural light and views
Harbour House was designed by John Pardey Architects and is located in Hampshire. The design team overcame planning permission issues and an awkward site to create a home that provides its owners with stunning views of the sea
5/20
Harbour House was designed by John Pardey Architects and is located in Hampshire. The design team overcame planning permission issues and an awkward site to create a home that provides its owners with stunning views of the sea
House on the Hill was designed by Alison Brooks Architects and is located in Gloucestershire. It involved transforming an 18th century farmhouse into a home and gallery for African and Indian sculpture
6/20
House on the Hill was designed by Alison Brooks Architects and is located in Gloucestershire. It involved transforming an 18th century farmhouse into a home and gallery for African and Indian sculpture
House-within-a-House was designed by alma-nac and is located in London. The project transformed a 1960s home by adding an new exterior and remodeling the interior
7/20
House-within-a-House was designed by alma-nac and is located in London. The project transformed a 1960s home by adding an new exterior and remodeling the interior
Hove House was designed by Turner Works and is located in Brighton. The new home is a single-story masterpiece wrapped around a beautiful private garden
8/20
Hove House was designed by Turner Works and is located in Brighton. The new home is a single-story masterpiece wrapped around a beautiful private garden
House in Assynt was designed by Mary Arnold-Forster Architects and is located in Sutherland, Scotland. The prefabricated home is situated in a beautiful spot in the rural Scottish Highlands and is designed to minimize its impact on the local scenery
9/20
House in Assynt was designed by Mary Arnold-Forster Architects and is located in Sutherland, Scotland. The prefabricated home is situated in a beautiful spot in the rural Scottish Highlands and is designed to minimize its impact on the local scenery
Pele Tower House was designed by Woollacott Gilmartin Architects and is located in Cumbria. The firm turned a decaying group of historic buildings into a 21st century family home
10/20
Pele Tower House was designed by Woollacott Gilmartin Architects and is located in Cumbria. The firm turned a decaying group of historic buildings into a 21st century family home
River House was designed by John Pardey Architects and is located in Berkshire. It's situated on a stunning plot on a bend in the River Thames that floods periodically, so to ensure the home is protected from the water it's raised above the ground on stilts
11/20
River House was designed by John Pardey Architects and is located in Berkshire. It's situated on a stunning plot on a bend in the River Thames that floods periodically, so to ensure the home is protected from the water it's raised above the ground on stilts
Simple House was designed by Haysom Ward Miller Architects and is located in Cambridge. The home is situated on a very small plot and its modest design is intended to not impose on the neighborhood
12/20
Simple House was designed by Haysom Ward Miller Architects and is located in Cambridge. The home is situated on a very small plot and its modest design is intended to not impose on the neighborhood
The Modern Oast is one of the projects highlighted in the 2021 RIBA House of the Year. Located in Kent, it was designed by ACME and is inspired by the traditional local buildings once used to dry hops
13/20
The Modern Oast is one of the projects highlighted in the 2021 RIBA House of the Year. Located in Kent, it was designed by ACME and is inspired by the traditional local buildings once used to dry hops
The Old School was designed by ArkleBoyce Architects and is located in Yorkshire. As its name suggests, it involved turning an old village school into a beautiful luxury family home
14/20
The Old School was designed by ArkleBoyce Architects and is located in Yorkshire. As its name suggests, it involved turning an old village school into a beautiful luxury family home
Slot House was designed by Sandy Rendel Architects with Sally Rendel and is located in London. The skinny home was squeezed into an alleyway and despite its compact interior, looks surprisingly livable
15/20
Slot House was designed by Sandy Rendel Architects with Sally Rendel and is located in London. The skinny home was squeezed into an alleyway and despite its compact interior, looks surprisingly livable
The Water Tower was designed by Tonkin Liu and is located in Norkfolk. It has already won the Stephen Lawrence Prize and involved transforming an old water tower into a one-of-a-kind family home
16/20
The Water Tower was designed by Tonkin Liu and is located in Norkfolk. It has already won the Stephen Lawrence Prize and involved transforming an old water tower into a one-of-a-kind family home
The Outfarm was designed by TYPE Studio and is located in Devon. The project is an excellent example of a barn conversion done right and is described as a "gem in the rough" by RIBA
17/20
The Outfarm was designed by TYPE Studio and is located in Devon. The project is an excellent example of a barn conversion done right and is described as a "gem in the rough" by RIBA
Weybridge House was designed by Wilkinson King Architects and is located in Surrey. It serves as a family home and photographic studio, so maximizing natural light was paramount in this build
18/20
Weybridge House was designed by Wilkinson King Architects and is located in Surrey. It serves as a family home and photographic studio, so maximizing natural light was paramount in this build
Wolds Barn was designed by ID Architecture and is located in Yorkshire. The project overcame planning restrictions and takes its place perfectly in the beautiful location
19/20
Wolds Barn was designed by ID Architecture and is located in Yorkshire. The project overcame planning restrictions and takes its place perfectly in the beautiful location
House for Theo and Oskar was designed by Tigg + Coll Architects and is located in Surrey. It involved the careful renovation of a small family cottage into a house suitable for two young boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
20/20
House for Theo and Oskar was designed by Tigg + Coll Architects and is located in Surrey. It involved the careful renovation of a small family cottage into a house suitable for two young boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
View gallery - 20 images

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced its selection of the best new houses in the UK. Consisting of 20 impressive and varied residences, the 2021 House of the Year longlist includes a water tower turned into a home, an accessible renovation of a small family cottage, and a skinny house shoehorned into an inner-city alleyway.

The RIBA House of the Year was established in 2013 and is awarded to the best new house or home extension designed by an architect in the UK.

Most of the homes that feature in this year's longlist are located in the south of England, though there are a few in the north too. Scotland also has two entries (both in rural Sutherland). Northern Ireland and Wales aren't represented this year.

We've selected a few interesting projects below that caught our eye, but be sure to head to the gallery to see each one. Of the 20, one ultimate winner will be selected later in the year and we'll be back to report on that once it's announced.

The Water Tower was designed by Tonkin Liu and is located in Norkfolk. It has already won the Stephen Lawrence Prize and involved transforming an old water tower into a one-of-a-kind family home
The Water Tower was designed by Tonkin Liu and is located in Norkfolk. It has already won the Stephen Lawrence Prize and involved transforming an old water tower into a one-of-a-kind family home

The Water Tower, by Tonkin Liu, is the recent winner of the Stephen Lawrence Prize. This superb project involved transforming a dilapidated water tower into a family's second home.

Structurally, it's actually divided into two towers: a staircase and elevator tower for access, plus the residential tower. The home is topped by the original water tank, which has been turned into a cantilevered, open-plan living space offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape.

House for Theo and Oskar was designed by Tigg + Coll Architects and is located in Surrey. It involved the careful renovation of a small family cottage into a house suitable for two young boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
House for Theo and Oskar was designed by Tigg + Coll Architects and is located in Surrey. It involved the careful renovation of a small family cottage into a house suitable for two young boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

House for Theo and Oskar was designed by Tigg + Coll Architects, with the firm carefully remodeling a small family cottage into a house suitable for two young boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a devastating degenerative disease.

Keeping one eye on the tight (though undisclosed) budget, the architects created a new front entrance, with a ramp to allow wheelchair access. Other notable changes include a new interior layout that makes navigating the home much easier and an extension with a large overhanging roof section that creates a place for the children to play.

Slot House was designed by Sandy Rendel Architects with Sally Rendel and is located in London. The skinny home was squeezed into an alleyway and despite its compact interior, looks surprisingly livable
Slot House was designed by Sandy Rendel Architects with Sally Rendel and is located in London. The skinny home was squeezed into an alleyway and despite its compact interior, looks surprisingly livable

The Slot House, by Sandy Rendel Architects, with Sally Rendel, is squeezed into a disused alley in London and has a total width of just 2.8 m (9.1 ft).

Almost every aspect of the home needed to be configured around the lack of space, down to the placement of furniture, the staircases, and even the waste pipes. All this effort was worthwhile though and has resulted in a home that's surprisingly comfortable-looking and light-filled, despite its svelte proportions.

Source: RIBA

View gallery - 20 images
1 comment
1 comment
Longtermthinker
A few interesting buildings here. I especially like the detailing and restraint of “Simple House” The disheartening part is that many of these homes feature huge areas of floor to ceiling glass which appears to appeal to the judges. In my mind this is the lazy way to provide daylighting and views, just throw a very expensive, hard to install, thermal hole in the wall that is there to impress the judges and the neighbors. Competitions should promote innovative thinking on new ways to provide beautiful, efficient, comfortable, affordable and site sensitive building. These choices by and large honor business as usual design decisions.