Inspirational brick architecture for Hampstead

June 18, 2019

Hampstead is home to many prestigious buildings, renowned for their architectural heritage, whilst also being notoriously popular with creative visionaries. Former local residents include poet; John Keats, novelists; George Orwell and Agatha Christie, sculptors; Barbara Hepworth, Piet Mondrian and Henry Moore and architect; Bauhaus’ Walter Gropius. Benefitting from the beautiful leisure spaces of Hampstead Green, the open spaces of the Heath to the north, and exceptional city views to the south, Belle Vue by Pegasus Life is situated in an exceptional location, offering luxury apartments exclusively to those over the age of 60.

This brand new development in one of London’s most historic villages (home to St Stephen’s, a listed Victorian brick church), is designed as an “island” surrounded by six conservation areas, each with their own unique qualities. The rich history of the village has attracted architects, artists, writers and actors over the past two centuries, drawn to Hampstead’s thriving cultural events. Harnessing this local energy and activity, the development offers an excellent range of services amid a creative, sociable environment.

The project, designed to RIBA Stage 3+ by Duggan Morris Architects (now named Morris & Co) and completed by ArchitecturePLB, consists of four connected buildings that range in height from 4-10 storeys. The complex façade design features include steel framing systems backing to hand-laid brickwork in feature bonds. An intricate mechanically-fixed brick slip rain-screen was created with precast panelling, precast sills and banding, loggia balconies, composite punch windows and stick curtain walling.

Belle Vue (also named Hampstead Green Place) is a fantastic example of how over 30 different contractors, including engineers Elliot Wood Partnership and Eckersley O’Callaghan, have worked cohesively to deliver this high-end residential retirement development. Michelmersh is extremely proud that its Floren Avorio brick is the focal point at the forefront of this innovative and contemporary design.

Alastair Gray from E H Smith stated: “E H Smith worked closely with Floren to ensure a consistent blend was delivered. Morris and Co was meticulous in choosing the brick with the right amount of weathering and Floren was able to facilitate this. We are very proud to be involved in this challenging project, which looks fantastic.”

Photographs © E H Smith

Andy Wilson, Director of The Bespoke Brick Co, commented: “We were proud to work alongside Morris & Co, E H Smith and the dedicated team at Floren in developing two bespoke products for this scheme. The two red tumbled bricks included one with 60% special pigmented slurry and one with 90%. We are extremely happy with the outcome delivered by Floren in producing a subtle contrast between the colours, the rustic aesthetics complement Morris & Co’s innovative attention to detail on the contemporary fenestration design and we are very pleased with the impressive finish.”

The scheme, located on this tight urban site next to the Royal Free Hospital in Belsize Park, certainly achieves its original design intent, set out by Duggan Morris, to be a place where socialising, exploring creativity and nurturing wellbeing are effortless. Featuring details from the notable buildings of Hampstead, Belle Vue will be a valuable addition to the variety of architectural styles nearby whilst also raising the bar for leading-edge brick architectural design and providing inspiration for the next generation of creative people who reside in Hampstead.

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