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Reed Watts Architect Appointment - May 2018

I'm excited to let you know that the New Clubhouse Development team received 58 applications from architects interested in our project.

Here's what's happened over the last few weeks:

Before Easter David Haywood, Nikki Linsell, Rob Austen and I met in the back bar of the Leg of Mutton and went through these 58 applications and narrowed them down to 6.

We invited these 6 to give us a 2x page A3 expanded proposal and 2 weeks later these were received.

A further meeting took place on 9 April where we were joined by Sarah Jane Stanley parent and FSA committee member and Bob Davies Chair of the Rugby Club. We put together a scoring matrix and went through the 6 expanded proposals in detail.

These 6 were whittled down to 3 and those 3 firms were invited for interview last week at Ashtead Cricket Club where we also invited David Richardson as Chair of Cricket Club.

Each firm had an hour to give a presentation followed by Q&A.

All 3 firms were competitive but we felt that one best offered what will be required to make this project a success for the OFA and all Stakeholders so those present unanimously agreed to award the contract to Reed Watts 


In summary, the reasons included:

- a sustainable design approach nestled in the landscape successfully mitigating visual noise and light pollution to our neighbours, whilst being mindful of the archaeology, the proximity of the Main House and screening from the Listed Bridge, the ecology and the changes in level due to the topography of the site

- a real understanding of the safeguarding issues - the ability to ring fence the site and showing forward thinking regarding zoning areas of the clubhouse

- they have recently completed Regent’s Park open air theatre extension (http://www.reedwatts.com/open-air-theatre/) and are on site with Teddington Cricket Club based within the listed Bushy Park (http://www.reedwatts.com/teddington-cricket-pavilion/)

- they have been mindful of tree root protection for both the building and the car parking and have demonstrated cost effective technologies already utilised in Regent's Park to satisfy their planning department

- they took the original outline drawings prepared by Ian Robinson at Mountford Piggott and suggested revising the scheme to create a building with less impact on existing trees, neighbours and to consolidate the parking

- they really understood about the materiality of the building and listened to our advice that whilst being a building we can all be proud of, that it should 'disappear' as much as possible and also fit in aesthetically with the new pool and music/boarding buildings in the Park

- the firm is young and eager but come from established previous practices including a recent Hawkins Brown alumni (the School's architects).

So next steps are to work with Reed Watts and stakeholders on the final designs and we hope to go for planning permission in September this year.

There are enough funds raised from events held at the Clubhouse over the years to pay for the work to get us to the planning stage. So we have not touched the funds given by the generous folk that make lump or monthly donations over the last few years.

Exciting progress!

With very best wishes,

Theo van Dort


Old Freemen's Association

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