creative solutions


What is Self-Build? March 2015

Read our article in this month's OX magazine: http://oxhc.co.uk/What-Exactly-is-Self-Build.asp

Headington School Library enters pre-construction phase - March 2015

The school have announced that the project will now progress into the pre-construction phase with view to construction being complete by March 2016.

RIBA Part II/III architect/assistant required Feb 2015

See details on our careers page.

Headington School Library wins planning Jan 2015

Largely due to a successful pre-application process, Headington School's new library went through planning without a single negotiation or query. Subject to funding, it is hoped that construction will commence late 2015.

New Year optimism shines through Jan 2015

Our list of new instructions for 2015 is a sign of good things to come. The list includes masterplans for housing developments plus extensions and alterations to residential properties across the region.

Headington School Library submitted for planning November 2014

Following a successful pre-application process, our scheme for the library relocation and expansion has now been submitted to Oxford City Council for planning approval. Click here to see the project.

Cogges Farm commercial kitchen under construction Dec 2014

Thanks to the fundraising efforts of our client, the creation of a new commercial kitchen is now in full swing. The work is being done by local contractors RMD Builders and will enable Cogges to provide a range of on site catering from weddings to one off culinary events hosted by guest chefs.

Part I, II & II positions advertised November 2014

We are currently advertising for new positions within the practice. Please see our 'Jobs' page and our advertisement with RIBA Appointments.

Design and manage projects on the increase November 2014

The average small to medium scale residential project is difficult to make happent these days. Changes in the market are making it awkward to find local builders at the best of times.

Our long established relationship with a team of multi-trade builders has created a long-term partnership for the delivery of design and manage projects. Our team does everything from groundworks to finishing trades without ever having to leave site. Recent testimonies from clients have ensured their continuous employment on our projects. Our clients pay for labour directly and through our established contacts in the supply industry, we either supply or procure all of the building materials. This aproach is ideal for projects of up to around £200k.

Oxfordshire residential extension schemes under way November 2014

A diverse range of residential projects have come our way recently, predominantly all through referrals. Designs for a riverside garden and extension on Osney Island in Oxford, a contemprary extensions in Freeland, another in Long Hanborough and an overhaul of an east Oxford bed and breakfast establishment to name just a few.

Central London basements instructed November 2014

Immenent changes in planning legislation have forced London property owners to accellerate plans for sub-terrainian expansion.

This has led to us being instructed to prepare planning applications for sub-terrainean expansions of five central London properties.

London local planning authorities such as the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea have already exercised their local powers by increasing the amount of information required to have a basement planning application registered.

Richard Frank joins the practice October 2014

Richard Frank, a Part I graduate from Portsmouth University joined the practice at the beginning of this Month. Richard will be assisting on the wide range of projects at the conceptual stage in the first instance and and then progress to the more detailed stages as his skills develop.

Part I/II architecural assistant needed September 2014

Due to an expanding workload we are seeking a creative and talented addition to the team. See our Jobs page for more.

School library project receives 'OK to submit' from planners August 2014

Our contemporary approach to a new reading room and conversion of a former gymnasium into a 21st library facility was given the nod by local planners during the pre-application process. Plans are looking to be submitted in early October.

Listed building consents granted August 2014

26 High Street (Woodstock) and Harcourt Cottage (North Leigh) were given listed building consent by West Oxfordshire District Council this month. Both projects, for different clients, are now entering pre-construction stages.

Oxford University design & supply contract awarded August 2014

Successful negotations have resulted in the practice being asked to design and install bespoke workstations for Oxford University's Department of Physics. The 'one stop' package is being put together using a range of suppliers under our managment.

Cogges Church Centre wins planning July 2014

After a very smooth ride with both West Oxfordshire District Council, Witney Town Council and English Heritage, the project was granted full planning and listed building consent earlier this week. We are delighted that our ideas for improvements to the site have been so well received. More.

Intensive refurb completed in just 7 days July 2014

After months of planning every tiny detail including furniture storage off site so the works could take place, a large house in Oxford was transformed in just seven days. The works included the stripping out and redesign of two bathrooms, removal and replacement of all floor finishes, re-painting, cleaning and reinstatement of all furniture right down to hanging curtains and pictures. More.

Church centre expansion submitted for planning March 2014

Following a positive pre-application process with West Oxfordshire District Council, a planning and listed building application has now been submitted. The expansion will provide a multi-function foyer for events and creates a completely new entrance experience to the 900 year old church. A car park on the adjacent water meadow is also proposed. More.

300 year old listed residence to be extended March 2014

Plans have been submitted for a three storey rear extension and home office in a rural Oxfordshire village. The main house extension takes a traditional form, with largely glazed contemporary detailing. The new office has a sedum roof and views over fields beyond. More.

Church Centre ideas welcomed by local planning authority Jan 2014

Sketches and 3d model views submitted to West Oxfordshire District Council as part of a formal pre-application enquiry have been well received. A full planning and listed building application is now underway, and due to be submitted before the end of February. The contemporary design consists of a curved 'cloister-like' colonade which breaks out to the main entrance approach to St Mary's Church in Cogges, Witney. West Oxfordshire conservation architect said it was a 'good design' and would be 'welcomed'. Once completed the approach to the church and church centre will be greatly enhanced.

School library and reading room enters design phase Jan 2014

Initial ideas submitted to the school in November have lead to us being asked to look at a wider proposal to re-think, relocate and extend the private school's library facility. An extensive research phase will ensue, making sure the new facility will function not only as a show piece for the school, but also meet the needs of 21st century information technology and beyond.

City centre hotel pre-app meets with positive response Dec 2013

The second pre-planning application enquiry for a prominent UK city centre site has met with positive feedback from the city planning and conservation authority. The new building is to be 7 storeys in height on a compact site opposite a church in a conservation area. The design for the 30 room hotel and restaurant will be submitted to the council in February. Once completed, the project will transform what is currently a quiet thoroughfare in the city centre.

New graduate joins the team Nov 2013

After a succesful interview, Oxford Brookes graduate Duncan Catterall has commenced full time employment with the practice in. Duncan's recruitment is the result of two large planning applications which need to be submitted over the next few months, a new build city centre boutique hotel, and a library refurbishment and expansion for a private school in Oxfordshire.

Church centre expansion project under way 31 Oct 2013

Pettorino Design Ltd has been commissioned to prepare designs for the expansion of St Mary's Church Centre in Cogges, Witney. The project will involve the demolition of some 1960's extensions, a new 100 sq m foyer including a new kitchen and refurbished wc facilities. The project extends to the provision of a new car parking area adjacent to the water meadow opposite the site.

Part I/II architectural assistant required 31 Oct 2013

A range of high quality commissions has led to the need for us to take on an additional architectural assistant. A multi-storey hotel, a library reading room for a private school and extensions to a church centre are all currently at pre-planning stage. In addition to this, our live projects included a number of one-off houses and residential extensions mainly in the Oxford and West Oxfordshire areas.

July news review 29 July 2013

The practice has seen significant growth in the past six months, so much so that keeping this news page updated has been unfortunately neglected. Most significantly, a stream of enquiries and instructions has led to a further full time employee. Adrian Buckle joined the practice in March.

Since the last news posting in November, over a dozen new projects have come our way. The diversity is invigorating. Amongst the thirty or so current projects we are working on is a new building at Headington School, refurbishment of two buildings in Oxford for Williams College, a new sports pavilion plus a number of large one-off houses and residential extensions.

We are also looking at revamping an Oxford night club garden, putting a sauna in the basement of a listed building in Witney and converting a large basement into a cinema room and wine cellar in the Cotswolds.

In June we were succesful in our application to become an RIBA chartered practice and the increasing workload has meant taking on additional part time staff to help with admin and keeping this website up to date(!).

Oxfordshire village pub to become a new residence 20 Nov 2012

Garsington is located a few miles to the east of the Oxford ring road in an idealic rural location. The village originally had three pubs, but has been unable to sustain them. Working with planning consultants Edgars Ltd, Pettorino Design Ltd has been commissioned to oversee the process and prepare a phased design to convert the premises into residential accommodation for a local family.

Motion capture studio expand into refurbished premises 10 Nov 2012

Audiomotion Studios Ltd specialise in motion capture for the film and gaming industries. Currently operating from premises near the Oxford city centre, new 2,000 sq m premises have been found that will facilitate their expansion and diversification into recording motion capture with sound. The premises will also enable them to have as many as three studios whilst still leaving room to sublet part of the industrial unit.

Pettorino Design Ltd has been commissioned to prepare initial designs, get the change of use through the planning process and project manage the process as lead designers. Scheme design drawings and images can be viewed here.

Ancient barn converts to function venue 10 Oct 2012

Cogges Manor Farm has invited Pettorino Design to present ideas for a scheduled aincent monument to become a practical and characterful venue for hire. The listed barn has an earth floor that will be covered with sand to provide a level surface for flagstone paving. Bespoke metalwork will retain the sand bed and provide steps and ramp to the area. View some of the listed building application drawings here.

Planning consent granted for landmark contemporary house 2 Oct 2012

With support from the local authority conservation officer, written support from the Woodstock town council and 29 letters of support from local residents, this project went to planning committee yesterday. It was a long time in the design process and extensive consultations took place. There was a clear view from the planning committee that there is a place for high quality 21st century architecture in historic towns. View the planning drawings here.

Practice takes new High Street premises in town centre 20 Sept 2012

Pettorino Design has just finalised a lease on new office premises on the High Street in Witney, Oxfordshire. Our new address can be found on the Contact page.

New recruit joins team 2 August 2012

Pettorino Design is pleased to announce the appointment of Daniel Lembo. We advertised for a full time graduate/architectural assistant on the Architects Journal on line job listings. 70 applications were received and Daniel made it through. Daniel obtained his qualifications at the University of Greenwich (Part I) and the University of Brighton (Part 2). We welcome him to the team. Click here to see Daniel's profile on Linkedin.

Go-ahead given for designs for student housing project 19 July 2012

A private investor has just given the go-ahead for the preparation of a planning application for a new build student accommodation in the Oxford city centre. The building will accommodate 24-30 en suite study bedrooms in self-contained flats over several storeys, and the ground floor and basement will become a bar/restaurant. Pettorino Design will be working alongside Oxford planning consultants, Kemp and Kemp.

Planning application submitted for contemporary residence in historic town 18 July 2012

After months of discussions with the local authority and two formal pre-application procedures, a design has now been submitted for planning and conservation area consent. The site is on the town centre fringe with incredible views across the Cherwell Valley. Approximately 250 sq m of accomodation is spread across two main levels, plus a basement in the side of the hill.

Pettorino Design is now recruiting and seeking new premises 27 June 2012

Due to an expanding and diverse workload, Pettorino Design is now recruiting and looking for new premises. For more information see our 'Jobs' page.

6 residential unit development in Somerset goes out to tender 26 June 2012

Four contractors have been invited to tender on the construction of 6 new build residential units on the banks of the river Somer in Midsomer Norton, near Bath. The works also include alterations to the listed commercial premises at 'Island House' on the same site. Tenders are due to be returned in late July.

Croatian village reconstruction project enters next phase 3 June 2012

A scheme is being developed for a number of apartment/hotel units and holiday homes on the Peljesak Peninsula on the Dalmation coast in Croatia. The abandoned village has been painstakingly acquired over many years and will ultimately become a high quality facility at this much sough after location.

Listed building application for extensions to commercial art gallery in historic Oxfordshire town submitted 1 June 2012

An awkward and complex historic building in Woodstock is to undergo some much needed extensions and alterations to expand the commercial premises at ground floor level, and improve and expand the living accommodation above. A simple 'modern traditional' approach has been adopted, introducing lots of light and a much improved connection with the rear garden.

1st phase of central Oxford bar/nightclub refurbishment completed 28 May 2012

Completely undertaken without any loss of trading, a dedicated team worked the daylight hours fitting air conditioning, lighting and recycled timber and steel wall finishes. At night the club traded, and during the day the work continued. After only a week the first phase is now complete. The front bar area will undergo the same treatment in just a few more weeks when some specialist fittings and finishes arrive on site.

Planning application for two houses in north oxford submitted 28 May 2012

After several rounds of pre-planning negotiations with Oxford City Council in collaboration with Kemp and Kemp planning consultants in Oxford, a design for two new homes has been submitted on this site in the old Headington quarry. The quarry was originally excavated to provide stone for the construction of the Oxford Colleges, over 900 years ago.

Planning application for challenging extensions to terraced house in east Oxford submitted 24 May 2012

An unusualy tapering site in a sought after area off the Cowley Rd in Oxford has had a scheme prepared that adds masses of space but without losing the unique 'narrowness' of the plot. The application includes a large rear ground floor extension plus the raising of the entire roof to accommodate bedroom accommodation in the loft.

Planning application for extension to large residence in west Oxfordshire submitted 13 April 2012

This is yet another case of a fairly new house, built by a large housebuilder, that got it wrong from the outset. Loads of bedrooms and bathrooms, but seriously lacking in the ground floor kitchen/family areas. A scheme has been submitted that transforms the ground floor of the house and creates an ideal balance between sleeping and living accommodation.

Planning application for complex extensions and alterations to rural residence in Herefordshire submitted 11 April 2012

Located at Bringsty Common, near Worcester, this property origniated as two small Victorian stone cottages set into a hill side with an acre of land and views of the Malvern Hills. An early 1980's extension had already more than doubled the size of the property. Our clients purchased the property in 2011 and needed to add a further bedroom and more living areas. The house's unusual orientation provided an opportunity for even further extensions justifiable under current planning policy.

Planning application for extension to large farm house in west Oxfordshire submitted 1 March 2012

A fairly humble two story farm house is to undertake significant extensions and alteration, adding living areas and bedroom. Previously the practice designed a large enclosed swimming pool and garages which were recently completed.

Planning application for extension to large residence in west Oxfordshire submitted 21 Dec 2011

This is a case of a fairly new house, built by a large housebuilder, that got it wrong from the outset. Loads of bedrooms and bathrooms, but seriously lacking in the ground floor kitchen/family areas. A scheme has been submitted that transforms the ground floor of the house and creates an ideal balance between sleeping and living accommodation.

Designs for two contemporary houses in north Oxford underway 2 Nov 2011

A scheme is to be put together for two new build houses for an Oxfordshire based developer. Each house will be around 190 sq m, have sedum planted roofs and ground source heating. The brief is to design 'simple yet interesting' houses that are 'easy to live in' . Privacy from overlooking is also a requirement. The properties will be sold on the open market once complete.

Live work box complete after two weeks of construction 5 July 2011

A bespoke modernist garden office for a prominent Oxford astrophysicist and his anthropologist partner is now complete. The 15 sq m structure opens completely to the garden and will provide a work at home space for both academics. Our role was to design the live work box, specify and order all of the construction materials and manage the builders on site. The timber framed building sits on steel posts set in concrete and has an exposed steel portal frame to the front. Project details

Practice wins large retail project with Helen & Douglas House 12 June 2011

Pettorino Design has been commissioned to prepare a planning application to convert two motor retail showrooms and a workshop into a furniture showroom, restoration workshop and store. The project is for Helen & Douglas House, the Oxfordshire based childrens' hospice charity. The site is on the outskirts of Aylesbury and totals approximately 1,000 square metres. A planning application will be submitted in the autumn.

Somerset housing scheme wins planning consent 16 May 2011

After lengthy negotiations with Bath and North East Somerset Council, this project has finally received planning approval. Advice and a report from the Nash Partnership in Bath was crucial in gaining the support of the planning team by providing a rounded view on the conservation and listed building issues. Our clients had been previously advised that this land had 'no development potential' and is now to be home to six new residential units. Project details

Pettorino Design wins contemporary new build residence in historic town centre 6 May 2011

From a shortlist of 6 Oxfordshire firms, Pettorino Design today had confirmation of the appointment. The project, a 250 sq m new build house is in the historic Woodstock town centre on a hillside site overlooking the Cherwell Valley

Cycle shop and flat scheme submitted for planning 11 April 2011

Proposals for a landmark site on Botley Road in Oxford have been submitted to Oxford City Council for planning consent. The scheme will enlarge the ground floor shop and provide a new external entrance to the large flat above. Other internal aterations are also proposed for the flat, including a new entrance hall, bathroom and utility. Project details.

Osborne's 2011 budget offers hope with planning system reform 25 March 2011

Promises include encouraging local authorities to abolish Section 106 agreements with developers, government loans for first time buyers of new build homes, and a total review of the planning process. For the full article in Building Design see:


6 Flat Scheme Somerset planning application gains officer support 22 March 2011

Our client had been previously advised that this land had 'no development potential'. Persistent negotiations and consultation have led to a 6 residential unit development being re-resubmitted for planning with full support from Bath and North East Somerset Council.

The site is within the curtilage of a listed building and on the bank of the River Somer.

City Council supports north Oxford Scheme 11 March 2011

A residential extension in a sensitive conservation area has been re-submitted for planning following successful negations with the planning department. Some minor amendments were agreed to minimise impact on adjoining properties.

Presitgious student housing project appointment  10 March 2011

Pettorino Design was today appointed to prepare a feasibility study for a 450 sq m extension to a high profile building on a central Oxford site. The additional space is to be used for student accommodation and the building is to be fully re-clad externally. Initial discussions with City planners and conservation officers are about to commence.

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