Surrey is unique among Home Counties for its vast residential properties and ample opportunities to build and rebuild. Its proximity to London and its remarkably varied residential architecture makes the county one of the most coveted and accessible outside the capital. Substantial homes of beautifully aged brick or smooth, contemporary lines sit on quiet, tidy lanes. Wherever you live in Surrey, a vast park, historic church or outstanding school is never far.
We established Scenario in 2007 with a vision to develop a uniquely collaborative architecture. Our considered approach to our clients’ desires place their aspirations for a new or renewed architect-designed home in high definition.
Among UK architects, Surrey- and London-based, we rank highly for putting our clients’ needs at the forefront of our design process. A beautiful, highly functional home is the product of a deep understanding and precise analysis of each client’s unique lifestyle – and that shows in our work. Our landmark project Scenario House, located in East London, was covered widely and shortlisted for several prestigious architecture awards – including the 2018 RIBA London Awards. It demonstrates our successful approach to sympathetic domestic architecture.
Scenario Architecture is a RIBA-chartered practice on top of the latest methods and technology. Founders Ran Ankory and Maya Carni, graduates of London’s Architectural Association, take a fresh, inventive approach to expanding and revamping period properties. Building an extensive portfolio of completed residential projects throughout London, they see the city’s most diverse residential neighbourhoods as their backyard. Their work has featured in Elle Decoration, Dezeen, Houzz and Ideal Home.
Your Surrey project
Starting your Surrey project
If you’re considering a residential architectural project in Surrey, we’re here to help, whether it’s a renovation, extension or new-build.
We’ve created a brief illustrated overview to help you understand each stage of the process, whether you’re planning a home extension, renovation or new-build in Surrey.
Most architecture projects in Surrey require planning permission from one of the Surrey County Councils. With our successful record securing planning permission on behalf of our clients, we can claim home advantage across Greater London.
TipDiscover 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.
AdviceWe have created guides for homeowners to provide additional advice and help with your project. The following eBooks are currently available for you to download:
1. Planning in London and the home counties - A guide for homeowners
2. Self build - A guide to building your own new build home
Your Surrey project >> Scenario Architecture
Working with Scenario Architecture on your Surrey project
Scenario Architecture is a boutique architecture studio focused on high-end residential projects in the Greater London area. We tackle domestic projects of every scale and complexity, from interior alterations and 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 collaborate closely with you from the initial drawings, design and planning through tender and construction to the successful completion of your project. On time and on budget.
Scenario Architecture 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 systems.
Early adopters of the latest technology, we use innovative 3D design and visualisation tools as a standard for all projects. Our experience shows that real-time visualisations and virtual reality are extremely efficient tools for choosing finishes, fixtures and fittings, and simulating natural light. We also use 3D building information modelling (BIM) to produce reliable construction information, so all our project 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.
This Chartered Institute of Building case study featuring a Scenario project demonstrates the great benefits of this advanced technology for domestic architecture.
Your Surrey project >> Further reading
Surrey offers a tale of two destinations: a bucolic green idyll and a comfortably convenient suburban lifestyle. The county abutting London’s southeastern border has the loftiest GDP per capita of any other, with some of the highest property values – and highest cost of living – outside the capital, and yet there are extraordinarily rural moments between the towns and villages. While the schools, shops and amenities in the communities dotted around the county offer all you could want from the commuter belt, you also get the greatest reserves of mature woodland of all the English counties – its 22.4% of wooded coverage is nearly twice the national average. The Metropolitan Green Belt sweeps across from west to east, encompassing the North Downs, Greensand Ridge, Frensham Ponds and the Surrey Hills area of natural beauty, inspiring the interlocking oak leaves on Surrey’s official logo. Box Hill, one of England’s loveliest areas for walking, with amazing swooping roads for country driving, has the oldest untouched area of natural woodland in the UK. The county also skirts Bushy Park and Windsor Great Park in the north.
As you’d expect from this relatively wealthy part of the country, golf and horse-racing courses abound, with the century-old Wentworth in the borders and Ascot just beyond. Around the same time the area was being established for rollicking weekend sporting, architects were establishing new styles for its residents. Edwin Lutyens began his eminent architecture practice here, with a country house in Farnham and an Arts and Crafts pile at Munstead Wood for the garden designer Gertrude Jekyll. His finest houses are sprinkled around the county, and gave way for a great Arts and Crafts movement throughout the southeast. That, in turn, provided ground for further architectural experimentation. For decades, Surrey was a place where architects and designers could exercise their creative chops. Forested plots around the so-called Golden Triangle, in southwestern Surrey, conceal all manner of brutalism, modernism and postmodernism.
But the area was settled long before the gracious architecture of the 20th century and 21st centuries appeared. After the departure of the Romans, Anglo-Saxon communities began a pattern of building on the land around Guildford, Godalming and beyond. Remains of churches from Anglo Saxon and Medieval times survive all over the region. Farnham Castle is one of the best-preserved old buildings in the region, and Guildford Castle still retains much of its Medieval structure. There is at least one great stately home representing the architectural styles that dominated henceforth, from the sprawling Tudor mansion at Loseley Park, built in the 1560s, to the twin villages East Clandon and West Clandon, near Guildford, with their Robert Adam-designed Hatchlands Park and the 18th-century Palladian mansion respectively. You could imagine few finer backdrops for a new or improved home in the southeast.
In our clients 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.
- 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.