With an extensive portfolio of completed residential projects throughout North London and North West London over more than a decade, Scenario Architecture feels at home in this part of the city. Our clients have helped position us as North London architects of choice: changing the architectural landscape one family home at a time.
North London is known for its rich cultural heritage, stunning landmarks, and impressive architecture. With a mix of Victorian and modern styles, the region has some of the most beautiful buildings in the UK. Each home in North London that undergoes any extension or renovation work, therefore, requires extensive thought and careful consideration.
We established Scenario in 2007 with a vision to develop a uniquely collaborative method of architecture. We take a considered approach to our clients’ desires, placing their aspiration for a new, architect-designed home in high definition. The clients’ needs are the main focus of our design process.
A highly functional home is the result of a deep understanding and precise analysis of each client’s unique lifestyle – and that shows in our work. A Scenario house tells the story of the owners – not the architects.
An Uneven Split, our landmark new build project in St Albans Hertfordshire, is an example of our ability to push architectural boundaries and integrate cutting edge home automation and sustainability principles into our designs.
Scenario House, another of our most famous projects in Stoke Newington, London, was covered widely and shortlisted for several prestigious architecture awards – including the 2018 RIBA London Awards. It is proof our successful approach to domestic architecture projects.
Your North London project
If you’re considering hiring North London architects, we’re here to help, whether your project is a renovation, extension or new-build.
We’ve created a brief illustrated overview to help you understand each stage of the process for your home extension, renovation or new-build in North London or North West London.
Most architecture projects in London require planning permission from the local council. North London architects with a successful record securing planning permission on behalf of our clients, we can claim home advantage across the capital.
Discover if your architect has had success steering planning applications through your local council. Visit the “planning applications” page of your council’s website and enter the architect’s name in the search criteria.
Scenario is an established architecture practice focusing on contemporary residential design. We take on projects of every scale and scope, from home refurbishment, renovation and expansions to new-builds.
Working with Scenario Architecture
Scenario Architecture is a boutique architecture studio focused on high-end residential projects around London. We tackle domestic architecture of every scale and complexity, from interior refurbishments to full renovations and new-builds, through our bespoke architecture service.
Our friendly, highly skilled team can take you step-by-step through the challenge of designing your new space. We’ll all collaborate closely from the initial drawings, detail design and planning through tender and construction to the successful completion of your project. On time and on budget.
Scenario is a RIBA Chartered Practice. We comply with the strict criteria of the Royal Institute of Chartered Architects, covering insurance, health and safety and quality-management.
Early adopters of the latest technology, we use 3D design and visualisation tools as a standard on all projects. Our experience shows that real-time visualisations and virtual reality are extremely efficient for choosing finishes, fixtures and fittings, and simulating natural light.
We use 3D building information modelling (BIM) to produce reliable construction information, so all our data comes from an accurate, coordinated 3D model. Using this cutting-edge technology collaboratively with consultants and contractors is proven to save our clients time and money.
A Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) case study featuring a Scenario project demonstrates the great benefits of this advanced technology for domestic architecture.
In our client's words
Great ideas and vision to help with our substantial improvement of a Victorian terrace. In our experience Scenario's method prioritises the final result. That may mean more professional fees or higher quotes from contractors, as they understand the exact requirements.
Great, professional service. Good drawings and models and ultimately passed planning at the first attempt with Hackney Council. Would certainly recommend!
Scenario Architecture have created an outstanding design and space that was beyond my expectations. The design was through their unique process of understanding the client’s daily scenarios and collaborating with the client to come up with a unique design. The design process is one of the most memorable parts of the process and they also stretched my existing ideas to help create this unique space. A stress free journey throughout the whole process which Scenario were indispensable by giving advice on many difficult design and build decisions.
We wanted to renovate our house in a conservation area in central London. Given this involved a complete demolition and new build with an extra floor on top, getting planning approval was always going to be tricky. Scenario did an amazing job on the new house 'envelope' and throughout the planning phase. We couldn't have wished for better from them and having succeeded in gaining planning approval owe them a very big 'thank you'.
Scenario were great at thinking imaginatively and coming up with a design for a ground floor extension that was more ambitous than other architects we spoke to. They also helped us find a contractor who was able to complete the project working within timescale and our tight budget. I would recommend for mid to large sized projects with sufficient budget to allow for full utilisation of their creativity.
When you buy a property in North London you are buying into a long and illustrious history. Once a rural landscape dotted with farms, it attracted country folk and weekend visitors as well as religious and political rebels who didn’t fit into other London communities. Parts of Hampstead were known for their wells of fresh, medicinal water and encouraged many to relocate from neighbourhoods further south toward the City. Some of the ivied brick cottages you see across North London today appeared in the 18th century, for residents escaping the intensity of central London.
By the 19th century, veritable villages had emerged, with distinguished churches and public schools, and railways station that made the wealth of parkland accessible to all of London. People who lived here enjoyed superlative views down over the city, particularly from Highgate and either side of Parliament Hill. Even today, the landscape across much of the north retains its charming Georgian qualities, even with the addition of Victorian and Late Victorian housing stock.
Some neighbourhoods in North London are known to be more affordable than their West London counterparts. That feature, as well as the area’s association with dissidents, has attracted generations of artistic people to the north. Artists from John Constable to Barbara Hepworth, musicians from Dave Stewart to Amy Winehouse and authors from John Keats to John Betjeman to Zadie Smith have lived here for periods of their life. There are also extensive international and Jewish communities across the north. Lately, access to St Pancras Station, with its connection to Europe via the Eurostar, has become an asset to North London homeowners.
North London is one of the greenest corners of London, with access to extensive tracts of public land and opportunities to enjoy nature. If you have a dog, you’ll be spoiled for choice around the three “H”s: Hampstead, Highgate and Highbury. The further south you live, the more that parkland begins to taper off. Camden is well known as a neighbourhood for shopping and nightlife, spreading out from the Regent’s Canal. Ditto Islington and Stoke Newington. Though the latter have their share of working-class and immigrant communities, they are no less distinguished, culturally, than their greener counterparts, with well-regarded theatres and museums worked into the fabric.
Living in North London, you’re far enough from the centre to benefit from a village atmosphere with independent shops and neighbourhood restaurants. Yet many spots are well-connected by Tube, Overground and bus lines to Central London.
Frequently Asked Questions
- As a dynamic practice operating in London’s premium residential market, managing projects remotely and conducting virtual meetings was a very familiar territory for us, long before the pandemic began and ‘working remotely’ became the norm.
- Our clients have very busy lifestyles and may move between several different locations, both within the UK and beyond, during the lifecycle of a typical project.
- To accommodate such client needs and enable us to run their projects smoothly we had all the technology and know-how associated with remote working in place for several years.
- Read our full (Virtual) Process
- Scenario based design – We start each and every project with a meticulous analysis of our client’s vision, requirements and aspirations. We do this by asking our clients to imagine their everyday scenarios living in the completed house and describe their desired interaction with it.
- Uniquely interactive - Our client’s deep involvement in the process does not stop with completion of the brief. Our design meetings are highly interactive, informal and fun.
- Designed to reflect you – Based purely on your lifestyle, aspirations and requirements and free from externally imposed concepts, metaphors and pre-conceptions, a completely fresh and unique design will gradually emerge and it will tell your story not ours.
- Collaborative – We start the conversation with planners early and advise most of our clients to seek pre-planning advice prior to submission of a full planning application. Our experience shows that when properly consulted and liaised with, most planning case officers will be receptive to conduct a professional dialogue, increasing chances of successes.
- Strategic – We tailor a custom planning strategy for each project based on its circumstances such as planning history, local context and specific challenging elements. We sometimes split applications or introduce minor tweaks to the scheme during the consideration period in conversation with the officers to prevent one contentious element from jeopardising approval of the main scheme.
- Professional – Our experience shows that the quality and clarity of the submission in terms of background research, planning history of the property and context, precedent and of course the arguments presented to support the case has a tremendous effect on success rate.
- The decision period clock only starts ticking once the application is validated by the Council, This requires then to check that the forms are completed correctly and that the submission contains all the necessary drawings, statements and reports.
- Although required by law to provide a decision within the statutory eight weeks period, it is not uncommon for councils to miss the deadline of the consideration period, normally only by a few days, sometimes longer.
- In some cases the council may ask us as your agent for an extension of time, this may be requested due to internal reasons or as an acceptable result of a professional discussion that we are conducting with them about certain aspects of the application that they are not sure about.
- Our experience shows that planning officers respond better to projects when they feel consulted and collaborated with. We find that when we truly listen to their often helpful and valid feedback and treat them as consultants for the projects and not representative of an evil enforcing authority, they tend to collaborate well with us and demonstrate increased flexibility.
- Although the council in theory have eight weeks to consider your application, in practice they are constantly overloaded. They will only look at your application in the last few days of the consideration period. If this is the first time that they come across a scheme that they were never consulted about, our chance to secure permission for you in a single attempt is significantly compromised.
- The standard practice is for the council to consider the full planning application as submitted and then issue a yes or no decision. Case officers are not required or even encouraged to enter a discussion with us or accept resubmission of minor changes to the proposed scheme during the consideration period.