Monthly Archives: September 2016

BIM For Small Projects!

20160920_shelterThinking Buildings are currently designing a traditional timber frame canopy for a small village school in Amberley, near Stroud. Even projects as small as this can benefit from BIM.  Because the school is listed, it has been essential throughout the project that the timber frame is built with authentic methods and to an extremely high standard. In addition, we needed to understand the constraints of such a small site.

We have accurately modelled the site and positioned the frame to maximise its effect in an historic environment. Unlike 2D CAD software, BIM has also allowed us to understand the tricky frame connections and site constraints in 3D and then convey these to the contractor and client alike. Above all, BIM ensures that we can continue to deliver beautifully crafted traditional architecture at any scale.

Listed Building Repair and Renovation Project is Completed

20160920_baptist-chapelThinking Buildings often work upon projects involving listed buildings and structures, and we have recently completed a first phase of repair and renovation works at a lovely grade II listed former Chapel at Hillesley in Gloucestershire. The former Baptist Chapel dates back to 1720 and in 2006 was sensitively converted for use as a hall to support the local primary school. Thinking Buildings were appointed by the School Governors and the Diocese of Gloucester to manage repair and renovation works which were delivered on budget and within a week of the original completion date. Thinking Buildings are now actively pursuing listed building consent for 2 future phases of work to improve internal ventilation and for window replacement.

Rural Modern – Part 3


Our client owns a large house in the middle of a lovely village, with a considerable area of land. They came to us to build a new house on some of that land, a house more easily adapted and manageable for later in their lives. The village is in central Kent and has a very high proportion of historic and listed buildings, so we knew this would be an interesting challenge.

The concept for the house is a group of pitched roofed buildings. The arrangement of the three blocks takes cues from traditional arrangement of rural and agricultural buildings, with the larger central building and smaller sections as “additions” made to it.

The main block holds the core of the house, with service areas (bathrooms, utility and plant) and the central circulation; this part is the most traditional in external treatment with a tiled roof, horizontal boarding and a brickwork plinth up to sill level. The two smaller blocks are more modern in their treatment, which zinc roof and vertical cladding, to distinguish them from the larger barn. The principal views from the site are to the south and so the large scale, modern proportioned windows are positioned to take advantage of this. A wide section of glazing to the inner corner of the south facing terrace, shaded by the master bedroom balcony above, breaks down the traditional form further.

The project is to be submitted to planning at the end of September.

Places To Live, Sleep And Eat Right In The Heart Of Cirencester

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Thinking Buildings have secured planning consent for 7 new residential townhouses right in the heart of Cirencester, maximising the development value of the site for our client. Full planning consent was secured despite the site having particularly challenging planning, highways and boundary constraints. This project is part of a wider mixed use site re-development that also included the recently opened Cote Brasserie restaurant, with Thinking Buildings also acting as Architect for the renovation and remodelling works of the existing listed building. It is nice to be working on projects that provide nice places to live, sleep and eat!