Caruso St John Architects

Location: East Sussex, UK
Client: Baylight Properties / Barratt Homes
Project Status: Study

The 16-hectare site for this housing study for approximately 100 homes lies within the High Weald area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.  Adjacent to Battle train station and largely surrounded by suburban development, the land is in multiple ownership and has been designated by the Council as a site for housing. The joint client’s aim is to show how good design can achieve improvements on the standard volume housebuilding product while accepting its economy, and how a distinctive place with a range of housing types can be made by working with the special characteristics of the site. 

Much of the site is quite steeply sloping and contains mature woodland and trees along former field boundaries.  More than is the case with surrounding suburban development, the existing natural topography and woodland is to be retained and will bring a distinctive character to the development. The more gently sloping town side of the site is proposed as a traditional garden city neighbourhood of detached, semi-detached and terraced houses arranged along a network of connecting lanes against a backdrop of mature trees. The eastern half of the site, with its steeply sided wooded valley, has a more private atmosphere. Here larger four and five bedroom houses are arranged around the valley’s perimeter overlooking the shared landscape at the centre.