This Exquisite Extension With a Zigzag Roof Was Made Possible by Neighborly Collaboration
In London, architect Julia Hamson transforms the dark, cramped kitchen of her Victorian terrace house into a flexible gathering space.
When London architect Julia Hamson founded her studio 4 S Architecture in early 2020, her first project was one close to her heart—a rear extension to the family home she shares with her husband and young daughter. The couple had been living in the home for six years, so they knew exactly what was needed. “The house was very dark, so my main brief was to create a flexible, open-plan space filled with natural light,” says Julia. “We wanted our whole family to be able to come together to eat, cook, and play—and the space had to be able to adapt to the changing needs of our family as our daughter grows up.”
The Victorian home is on a friendly cul-de-sac street in South London, and it was during the annual neighborhood street party that Julia got talking to her neighbors about how they were both planning a rear extension. They quickly realized that by working together, they would be less limited by planning regulations when it came to the height of the extension.
Julia had previously applied for planning permission, but had been asked to reduce the height along the boundary to 2.5 meters rather than the proposed four meters. The neighbor’s architect had designed a sawtooth roof facing the opposite direction, and so it was suggested that they create a four-meter-high party wall at the junction.