Berwick Street is home to one of London’s oldest and most famous markets. Known for fabric and record shops as well as for introducing olive oil, tomatoes and pineapples to London, the street represents everything that we love about Soho.
We were asked by Shaftesbury Capital to extensively refurbish and extend a pair of Grade II listed townhouses. Internally the two buildings had been poorly altered over the years, with layer upon layer of finishes creating a bland and sterile series of spaces.
The brief challenged us to remove the false ceilings and boxed-out areas and restore the original beauty of the buildings, as well as extend them at rear, maximising the ground and first floor plates- tricky on a tight site.
The project adds a roof terrace, rear extension and glazed infill to the buildings. Internally, all non-original finishes are removed, existing floorboards refurbished, original features restored and new recycled materials added. This project is a reflection of our RE:LOW principles.
A feature of all our projects with Shaftesbury is the use of new and sustainable materials. Here we have used Honext, a board made from waste paper and cardboard. This is one of the first projects in the UK to use Honext in this commercial context.
The rear extension is finished in a rough and smooth natural clay plaster which is recyclable, repairable and compostable. Both the Honext boards and clay plaster create a warm and textured finish.
The ground floor retail unit had a dark and rubbish-filled external courtyard at the rear. Here we have enclosed the space by adding a glazed rooflight and have left the existing brickwork exposed. We are pleased that a suit tailor has moved into the ground floor unit, strengthening the rich association with the fashion and textile industry.