Paddington Victorian Terrace
A dark Victorian terrace is refreshed and extended to create an enviable family home centred around a sun-drenched courtyard
Stephen & Kathleen were the owners of a grand old Victorian terrace that had lost its sense of elegance over the years, giving way to a dark and dysfunctional space. They needed a light and airy home with added room to move, logical flow and flexibility of use. It had to be a place that extended family and friends could use for informal gathering or even a home away from home. PWA’s approach was to create a house with distinct zones that were clearly defined but connected visually, and with detailed interior and illumination design, bring the new spaces to life. This allowed multiple users of the house to comfortably function at the same time, independent of each other yet without feeling cut-off. Family members could plug into social events or withdraw to various private spaces as they pleased.
The winding nature of the rear lanes inspired an approach that extended this quality into the house; several terraced layers create a journey through the various living spaces. The core of the house is undoubtedly the kitchen / living area and the central courtyard adjacent. The space is akin to a spine, a series of secondary rooms and functions feeding off it. The outdoor space itself becomes one flowing area by turning roof spaces into hanging gardens and creating stepped terraces that link different levels.
Colour played an important role in reinforcing the relationship between old and the new. A traditional Victorian palette of deep reds and greens was used in the existing house and then carried through into the new work with a more subtle and modern approach. Other interior aspects of the project included the design of built in joinery and lighting, perfectly complementing the feel and use of each room.
The family now enjoy the variety of spaces the house has to offer. A particularly delightful aspect is spilling out of the kitchen onto the terraced courtyard, which doubles as an open air dining room on warm summer evenings.
Photography by Michael Nicholson