Station Road, Godalming, Surrey
The site sits deep in the heart of Godalming’s historic town centre conservation area, adjacent to the station and against an impressive church spire backdrop. Previously a council-owned car park, it now boasts 14 charming, affordable dwellings.
Client Waverley Borough Council
Contractor W. Stirland Ltd.
Architect Churchill Hui
Contract Sum £1.85m
Godalming is a picturesque Surrey town with narrow shopping streets bounded by open water meadows, wooded hills and distinctive greenbelt beyond. Many of the buildings in the centre are of architectural and historic importance, including the landmark spire of the Church of St. Peter and St. Paul. The design needed to fit into the town’s character and resolve a number of technical challenges including flood levels, archaeological issues and the site’s conservation area status.
After a winning pitch to Waverley Borough Council and Thames Valley Housing Association, Churchill Hui were appointed as architects for the scheme.
Godalming’s unique character clearly provided a context for the site and played an integral part in the design. In order to compliment surrounding buildings, the flats were designed to resemble a mill and a classical grand house giving a nod to existing local style. The proportions of the buildings and the roof profiles made it possible to maintain views of the church spire, even from the interior court of the site.
A close consultation process was initiated to resolve key criteria such as security, perimeter treatment and aesthetic. A successful public consultation preceded a smooth planning approval.
The project not only delivered Waverley’s goals in terms of numbers, density, expected budget and a smooth planning process, but feedback has shown that the development’s design was more aesthetically pleasing to all stakeholders than originally anticipated.
The scheme of high quality affordable flats, maisonettes and houses with private and communal gardens won The Godalming Trust Civic Design Award for the category of New Building. Waverley Councillor Carole King stated: “I’m delighted that the homes have been recognised as being well-designed and attractive”.
Gareth Munro, Chairman of the Civic Design Awards sub-committee added: “The Station Road development is a flagship of how a central historic site in a town should be dealt with. It has been so well designed, incorporating a variety of styles.”