Open House London – Saturday 20 September 2014

Budding young architects will have a chance to discuss their portfolios with the directors and associates of one of London’s top architecture practices during this year’s Open House London weekend.

Islington architects Pollard Thomas Edwards have just celebrated four decades of creating new neighbourhoods and revitalising old ones.  The practice’s canal-side studios at Diespeker Wharf will be open for tours on Saturday 20 September, as part of Open House London 2014.

As well as the portfolio clinic for aspiring architects, PTE’s team will showcase their own artworks and an array of projects from across London and the southeast.

PTE has been part of the solution to London’s housing crisis – in the past five years alone, they’ve designed over 7,000 new homes in and around the city. Many of their developments have mixed market and affordable housing in award-winning, ‘tenure-blind’ buildings.

From its sensitively renovated heritage mill building, to clever mixed use schemes nearby, the company’s canal-side location is a living showcase of the practice’s diverse portfolio.

When PTE bought the Victorian Diespeker Wharf in the mid-1990s, the City Road basin was still a neglected part of Islington. The renovation of the old brick mill, followed by two mixed apartment and office developments with partners Groveworld, kicked off the area’s regeneration.

A new canal-side garden gave something back to the surrounding community, and a nearby school with housing above was a prototype for a new way of funding school development. PTE’s architects not only design award-winning developments, but also help many of their repeat clients find ways to fund affordable housing and make the most of limited city sites.

Visitors to Diespeker Wharf can explore models, maps and drawings from the practice’s portfolio. The old mill’s cobbled courtyard and secret garden will display sculptures by Herefordshire based artist Matthew Lane Sanderson, who will also be giving creative workshops throughout the day. This is a unique opportunity to meet and make with Matthew.

In our 40 years of practice, we’ve pioneered ideas that are industry standard now. Talented people come to work for us from all over, but we’re always looking at growing the next generation of designers who can help shape our city.”
Pollard Thomas Edwards – Executive Director, Andrew Beharrell

Matthew Lane Sanderson

Matthew is a sculptor who specialises in creating site-specific metalwork with natural and organic themes for public spaces. He will be showing groups and individuals how they can create their own piece of art, with a simple piece of wire.  Using a technique he describes as ‘wire drawing’, in a drop in workshop throughout the day.

A Herefordshire based artist, Matthew’s work has attracted a great deal of interest around the country and he has been commissioned for an exciting range of projects. Some of which are on show in his current exhibition at the practice, alongside a selection of new, never seen before work.

So come along and have a look, and create your own masterpiece.