The brief for this project on the site of the former Eccleston School was to create a residential scheme to suit the local characteristics and context in this quiet corner of Harborne.
The existing site consisted of a large three storey former dwelling, which had been used as a private school for many years. The school has carried out many changes to the side and rear in particular, many of which were not very complementary to the original building. The dwelling had a large garden and the building sat on the corner of St Peters Road and Victoria Road, Harborne.
Most of the neighboring dwellings in the immediate area were built at the end of the 1800’s or with some in the early 1900’s. The buildings in St Peter’s Road are large three storey dwellings, a number of which are semi detached. They are generally brick with plain tile roofs with either brick detailing or with some stone detailing i.e. stone window heads and lintels. All in this section of road are fairly plain buildings.
In Victoria Road the character changes with a greater variety of period buildings along the route. Adjacent to the site the pattern of large detached and semi detached dwellings is the prevalent form of development which is on a scale with St Peters Road.
The buildings are still largely brick with stone dressings and plain tile roofs but there is more decoration with ornate porches, half-timbering to gables, decorative brick arches over window heads, bay windows etc. The proposed buildings continue this street scene albeit being set behind the existing high brick wall and trees which are to be retained and try to reflect the details seen in this section of Victoria Road, whilst in turn they reflect the scale and massing of all of the main adjoining buildings.
The design looks to respond to the existing streetscape surrounding Eccleston School and other constraints by recognising the scale, massing and detailing of the surrounding buildings. In identifying the surrounding context the design seeks to blend into the existing street scene and respect the surroundings.