Concrete house in Henley wins RIBA Best New Building in South Award
Pheasants - nominated for Grand Designs House of the Year
Toureen Group was appointed to build the main structure of Pheasants, a private residence situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty in 2011. Concrete was the natural choice of material due to its durability and low environmental impact and fundamental in achieving the level of quality, gravitas and prominence required by the clients. Concrete could also provide the inherent thermal mass, as well as the aesthetic requirements for the house, which overlooks the River Thames.
The futuristic dwelling is situated in the countryside between Marlow and Henley and is a long rectangular plot accessed only by a privately owned road. The in-situ work was therefore an integral and critical part of the design and particular attention was given to the colour and texture of the surface of the concrete elements that would be visible in the completed building. Visually exposed in-situ concrete was chosen because its characteristics captured the clients' vision of elegance with durability, sustainability and strength.
The completed two-storey, five-bedroom spectacular abode, built in the modernist style with angular white concrete, successfully brought the clients' vision of their dream home into a reality. The detail and workmanship required immense teamwork, a team who were not only dedicated but could envisage the clients' final outcome.
Toureen Group worked very closely with the clients, architects and designers to ensure a seamless and successful project from concept to completion.
"The detail and complexity required for this project would not have been achieved without teamwork by all involved. Building strong relationships with the teams we work with is vital for completing our projects to the best of our ability, thus benefiting our company and clients in the long run." - Richard Horgan, Operations Manager
The clients, Dick and Judith Fletcher, had dreamed about their perfect home for years. It was in 2004 when the retired couple commissioned a RIBA international competition to bring their vision into a reality - to create a country villa enduring quality and elegance for the 21st century. The competition attracted many entries from around the world and was won by Amin Taha and Sarah Griffiths. The winning scheme was based on and inspired by the nine square plan of Andrea Palladio's Villa Boscari, but brought up-to-date by the use of modern materials such as corten, steel and most notably, the use of concrete.
Overcoming planning issues and objections that took five years and ended in the High Court, the clients' determination to stick to their original idea has finally given them the dream retirement home they have longed for and is now being given the recognition it so well deserves. Having won the Royal Institute of British Architects' award by being named the best new building in the South, Pheasants has now been nominated for RIBA's House of The Year Award which will be announced in the autumn and aired on Channel 4's Grand Designs House of The Year.