Sulgrave Gardens 

Sulgrave Gardens is a well-designed scheme with good architectural detail that over time is ageing well. Cartwright Pickard put a lot of resources into the project looking at the detail so that the finished product has got the right materials and is built to last.

David Woods, Development Director, Octavia Housing

Client  Octavia Housing
Location  Hammersmith, London
Completion  2013
Cost  £5.3m


  • RIBA stages 0-7
  • Feasibility study
  • Architectural design
  • Public consultation
  • Interior design
  • Post-occupancy evaluation


  • Hammersmith Society Awards – Sustainability Award
  • National Housing Awards – Best Sustainable Scheme
  • Sustainable Housing Awards (Shortlisted)
  • Brick Awards – Best Development 6-25 units (Shortlisted)
  • Building Awards – Sustainable Development of the Year (Shortlisted)
  • RICS London Awards – Residential Award (Shortlisted)
  • Housing Innovation Awards – Most Innovative Affordable Housing Scheme (Shortlisted)
Sulgrave Gardens

Sulgrave Gardens comprises 30 family homes in four blocks with a mix of typologies (houses, apartments and maisonettes) and tenures (9 homes for affordable rent, 13 for shared ownership and 8 private houses) in a conservation area in West London. At the time of certification, Sulgrave Gardens was the largest Passivhaus development in London. The scheme is arranged in four blocks. Two are Passivhaus certified and two designed to Passivhaus principles.

The houses to Sulgrave Road have been designed to re-establish and reinforce the Victorian street frontage. Creating a vertical rhythm along the terrace, they maintain the height and echo the richness of fenestration pattern and layering commonly associated with Victorian domestic architecture.

Sulgrave Gardens
Sulgrave Gardens

Sliding louver panels running along a track in front of the windows provide movable solar shading to south and south-west facing façade windows, to reduce the thermal gain inside and control the levels of direct light.

These will be open during winter months and can be closed during sunny summer days. A textured brickwork surface adds visual interest when the shutters are drawn.The landscaping unifies the four buildings and has been designed to be high quality yet low maintenance. An attractive, planted approach is created with a pedestrian-priority shared surface. The external areas have been designed to encourage sociability and informal play.

The scheme demonstrates that it is possible to make Passivhaus affordable and achievable, even on challenging and constrained urban sites that might previously have been deemed unsuitable. The attractive brick finish and careful detailing demonstrates that eco-homes can be attractive, and don’t have to look ungainly or idiosyncratic.
Sulgrave Gardens
Sulgrave Gardens
Sulgrave Gardens
Sulgrave Gardens
Sulgrave Gardens

Photography Morley von Sternberg