A house designed by a Huddersfield firm of architects has won an award.

The property at Scarr Top, New Mill, which was designed by Shelley-based Walton Horsfall Partnership, has received an Award for Building Excellence in the 2013 Local Authority Building Control Awards.

The house beat three other finalists in the category for Single Dwelling  in the West Yorkshire Awards.

Entries for the awards are received from the local councils of Kirklees, Leeds, Wakefield, Calderdale and Bradford.

Looking at Scarr Top from the front
Looking at Scarr Top from the front
 

Owners Giles and Helen Elliott and builder Stephen Dyson collected the award alongside winners in 11 other categories at a celebration in Leeds attended by 200 people.

Giles said they had been delighted to be nominated and to win.

He said: “Scarr Top is built on the site of a bungalow that was built in the 60s by another architect, Arthur Quarmby,  renowned for designing property ahead of its time. 

“Nevertheless, the property was quite small and we felt we needed something designed to our own specifications.   

“When our offer to purchase the property was accepted, we talked to Angus of Walton Horsfall, who we have known for 30 years as a friend.”

The contemporary living space inside Scarr Top
The contemporary living space inside Scarr Top
 

Now retired, Giles is a former art inspector and visiting professor in art education. Helen is a former journalist, who worked at the Huddersfield Examiner and the BBC before moving into senior roles in public relations.  Together they had plenty of ideas of what they wanted in their new home.

Said Helen: “The specification was for a house with three bedrooms with en-suite facilities; as economical as possible with regard to insulation and heating costs; and a key thing was light because our former Georgian house was dark inside.

“We also wanted a big open living space.” Giles also wanted a studio and Helen an office.

Internal features in the completed house incorporate a floating design staircase –  visually not appearing to touch the sides of walls or the floor – whole house ventilation, providing a change of air every two-and-a-half hours, underfloor heating on both floors, lots of energy saving devices and a ceedam roof over the garage and studio to provide extra insulation.

The garden, planted with silver birch, has a mock water feature made out of polished granite leading down to a wall sculpture by artist Patty Taylor. The couple met Patty while living and working in California for a year.

The judges of the LABC Awards made their selection according to design flair, quality of build and innovation.

Back of Scarr Top
Back of Scarr Top
 

Angus Ellis, of Walton Horsfall Partnership, said: “Really, all we set out to do was to create a contemporary, open-plan home, respectful of its context and I think that is what we have achieved.  The property sits comfortably with its neighbours.”

Paul Everall, LABC chief executive, said: “LABC is delighted to see an excellent house like Scarr Top in Holmfirth win our awards. 

“It demonstrates so many good facets in terms of its technical design, construction, quality and attention to detail. 

“All this was achieved in a cooperative way with local authority surveyors in partnership with the client, the designer and contractors. 

“It proves that quality is all about getting the approach right from the get-go, rather than interfering during the actual construction.”

The LABC Awards recognise the importance of building control in creating a high quality, sustainable built environment.

The winners of the regional awards now have the next phase leading to the LABC National Awards.