Leyton filmmaker’s home wins architectural award

The architect was commended on steering the council away from a “pseudo-Victorian” design
By Victoria Munro

Leyton House (credit: Fernando Manoso)
Leyton House (credit: Fernando Manoso)

A private Leyton home has won an architectural award after “bringing a touch of contemporary Mexico” to the borough.

Leyton House in Murchison Road, owned by filmmaker and writer Max Barron, was one of 42 London projects awarded by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

The jury wrote that the design by architects McMahon Architecture “successfully challenges preconceptions about what is deemed appropriate… in a predominantly two-storey Victorian context”.

They commended the architect on being “able to navigate the bureaucratic planning system” and “steer” Waltham Forest Council away from a “pastiche” and “pseudo-Victorian” design.

(credit: Fernando Manoso)

They wrote: “The architect has been able to push the boundaries of the clients’ expectations of what was possible on the site. The resulting solution is imaginative and multi-layered, tackling matters to do with overlooking and privacy, without detriment to internal light levels and views.

“Despite the small size of the plot, the home feels light and spacious, with an exceptionally calm and comfortable interior.”

(credit: Fernando Manoso)

They also praise the “clay plaster finish” which “flows from room to room and floor to floor” and “unifies the scheme”, adding: “It possesses a subtly Mexican feel… inspired by the owner’s other place of residence.

“While the scheme does not push the boundaries from a sustainability perspective, there is provision for a rooftop photovoltaic array and an air source heat pump to be installed at some later date, as finances allow.”

(credit: Fernando Manoso)

Homeowner Max Barron previously told lifestyle magazine Wallpaper: “I’d always dreamed of building my own house, an obsession inherited from my dad. But I never thought I’d get the chance, still less in London.”

As with all RIBA’s other London award winners, Leyton House will now be considered for its national prize, announced in June.