The housing stock around Berkshire is some of the UK’s oldest and most charming, and still it is always evolving and improving. Ascot and its neighbours enjoy a wealth of heritage housing with potential for expansion and renovation, as well as land on which to build anew. Yet building in the southeast comes with some responsibility for respecting a past that goes back millennia.
The existing architecture here is both quintessentially English and wildly varied, from Georgian manors and village terraces to reimagined Victorians and glassy contemporary villas. Yet the best housing defers to the landscape, the neighbours and what was there before. A skilled Ascot architect will understand how to transform a property of any style or respectfully plot a modern structure within the landscape. Architects who know the region will appreciate the local heritage while improving on it.
We founded Scenario with a collaborative approach to residential architecture. We design contemporary, distinctive yet functional spaces with our clients’ wishes at the heart. Our portfolio of work illustrates a keen understanding of the way homeowners live today. If you’re looking for an Ascot architect with a profound knowledge of the region and an open mind, please contact us and share your thoughts.
Our landmark project Scenario House demonstrates our commitment to transforming period architecture for modern lifestyles. A Victorian conversion in London with soaring ceilings and robust, contemporary materials, it was shortlisted for the RIBA London Awards in 2018.
Your Ascot project
We at Scenario have designed an illustrated rundown of the home-building process in the southeast and beyond. Use it to help make decisions about your residential project.
Building or expanding a home in Berkshire requires permission from your local borough. For Ascot architects this is the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead. We’ve forged successful relationships with planning departments around Berkshire and the home counties, which proves invaluable in helping to win approval for domestic projects.
Discover if your chosen architect has had success steering planning applications through your local council. Visit the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead website, click on the Planning menu and search the planning applications for your agent’s name.
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
We tackle domestic architecture of all scopes and scales, from new-builds to refurbishments, renovations and expansions. Our London studio provides a fully bespoke service, collaborating closely with our clients from the drafting phase through to planning, tender and construction. We strive to complete all our projects on time and on budget. If you’re searching for an Esher architect, visit our online portfolio and find the project that represents your vision.
We use 3D design technology to save our clients time and money and allow them to see what we see. This Chartered Institute of Building case study uses a Scenario project to illustrate the benefits of advanced technology in residential architecture.
Scenario is a RIBA Chartered Practice, complying with RIBA’s strict health and safety criteria.
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.
Ascot is a modern town disguised as an old English village, with quiet cul-de-sacs of ample brick houses and red-brick semis clustered around the pub and school. Ascot proper is small, practical and tethered to the legendary racecourse, which brings it incredible prestige and a steady flow of genteel party-goers (sometimes, though not always, wearing the eponymous ascot tie). A few similar residential villages orbit it, each blessed with its own outstanding independent schools – take St Mary’s to the south and Heathfield a way’s west. Between them are swaths of untamed forest, playing fields, golf courses and pretty public parks.
The area offers the best of both worlds. In one direction is London, just an hour by train. But for families, few towns can beat having Windsor Great Park on the doorstep, a 10-minute drive away. That probably accounts for the huge demand for real estate in and around Ascot – and not just by sporting types. Or it could be the two theme parks, Thorpe Park and Lapland, flanking the town.
You’ll find all sorts here, from lovers of mid-century developments, with their mod cons and garden conservatories, to Grand Designs devotees, who clear the way for giant estates that could sleep 20. In between are families who want more space than they could find in London, at a reasonable price with room for improvement. Modern architects have made enormous statements in Ascot, with broad glass boxes on rambling lawns with a pool or once neglected pond. But most people open up existing houses with an open-plan kitchen lined with Crittall, a great room, nanny suite, children’s wing or a summerhouse. These people adore the bucolic setting and the summer scene yet yearn for extra space to spread out or entertain.
An Ascot architect who has experience dealing with the local authorities and grounding in period architecture can transform a house with a past into a house with a long and happy future. There are few technical problems a skilled architect can’t solve with creative thinking and a good contractor, so it makes sense to think big.
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.