Creating your dream home may be one of the most personal journeys you can undertake. Additionally technical drawings can be difficult to understand and often don't convey what the final spaces will feel like. For this reason we developed a way of working called 'Engage, Experience & Understand' to help clients feel confident and in control through the process.
As experienced Architects we know how to interpret your ideas, but it is our ability to create and illustrate that vision through the latest technology that makes us unique.
Throughout the duration of the project we will hold regular review meetings with you, covering all aspects of progress - design, planning, construction and finance – so that you are always fully informed. It is during these meetings we use technologies such as virtual reality (VR) and walk around virtual 3D models to communicate the design of your home. Please see our VR page for examples.
VR has many benefits and is much appreciated by our clients. We turn simple sketches into a virtual three-dimensional copy of your future home or building where, using a headset and sensors, you can be transported into this virtual environment. You can walk through the building, see how the light falls differently throughout the day, consider how different materials would appear in situ - in fact see every detail at full scale as if it was already built. This enables you to make fully informed decisions before the design model is signed off and taken forward to construction. We have found this working method provides very high levels of client satisfaction and confidence.
VR also aids the efficiency and effectiveness of our liaison with planning authorities and with contractors and other parties we may be working with. In short, it enables everyone involved to understand exactly the nature of the proposed building and their role in making it a reality.
We model the building services (pipes, ducts etc.) in 3D to allow for virtual interrogation prior to stating on site. This identifies potential clashes, mitigating issues during construction and allows for a smoother build process.
The phrase we hear most often from clients when a project is completed is “it looks just like the visualisations!”
Richard Markland Architects was established in 2010. The practice is headed by Richard Markland and Alex Ball, who together lead a talented team of designers able to tackle projects both big and small.
BA (Hons) Dip Arch ARB RIBA
Richard Markland set up his new design studio to pursue his passions for architecture and urban design. He brings to the practice twenty five years experience in the construction industry.
Richard takes a hands-on approach in the development of all stages of a project. He is particularly adept at understanding clients’ needs and finding workable solutions which make the most of available resources to create exemplary designs which also add value. He has an enviable record for achieving planning consents for diverse scales and types of project. He is the primary author of all the practice’s projects to date.
Recent experience has concentrated on high-end residential design. As well as designing Richmond House, he also designed New Farm, a courtyard house in a sensitive rural location. Richard also designed Collins House, a 51 unit private rental apartment scheme with ground floor shops and parking.
Richard was a director at Markland Klaschka Limited for nine years prior to forming Richard Markland Architects. His early career consisted of stints at a number of award winning practices: Gensler, David Morley Architects, Munkenbeck + Marshall and Michael Squire & Partners.
Richard is a trustee of the Children’s Cycling charity Wheely Tots.
BArch (Hons) MA RCA Dip Arch ARB RIBA
Alex joined Richard in 2013 and became director in late 2019, having proved an invaluable asset to the practice. In 2020 he was shortlisted for the RIBAJ Rising Star Award.
After graduating with distinction from the Royal College of Art, Alex went on to complete a number of projects including leading the team that delivered the community building at Handy Cross and a spa and wellness centre to a Grade II* listed country manor, ensuring the design was executed to the highest quality.
Whilst completing his final degree at the Royal Institute of British Architects NW, Alex’s primary project was Richmond House, a 12,000sqft private house which was completed in October 2020. Other projects have included a 51 unit mixed-use residential scheme, a 140 bed business hotel (currently under construction) and securing planning on over 270,000sqft of offices.
Alex has been complimented by client and contractor alike for his collaborative approach to problem solving and dedication to delivering high quality pieces of architecture. His clear and concise explanations enable understanding from consultants and contractors, helping to keep projects on programme.
Sustainability is incredibly important to us. We are committed to producing high quality architecture that contributes positively to the natural environment.
We are part of the Architects Declare movement – a group of architects dedicated to promoting awareness of the climate and biodiversity emergencies and the urgent need for action by all those involved in the commissioning, design and construction of the built environment.
Buildings and construction account for nearly 40% of energy-related carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions whilst also having a significant impact on our natural habitats. We look at reducing the carbon footprint of buildings during their construction, through the use of locally sourced, or more carbon friendly, materials. However, our main focus is the long-term whole building life cycle whereby we seek to reduce the environmental impact of running the buildings long after our involvement has finished. Making the buildings more energy efficient is not only better for the environment but also reduces the overall cost of running those buildings.
Our aim is to design a building that adapts to the varying external conditions, creating a consistently comfortable environment whilst using the least amount of energy. We achieve this through a `fabric first’ approach. This means producing buildings that are highly insulated and have high thermal mass, that require less energy to heat in winter, but allow for natural cross-ventilation and solar shading to reduce overheating in the summer. These are all `passive measures’ that require no energy to implement.
On top of this we employ low energy methods of heating. We use mechanical heat recovery which recycles the existing heat in the building and combines it with fresh filtered air. This has the added benefit of removing impurities in the air, creating a healthier internal environment. We use under floor heating which is generated through air source or ground source heat pumps rather than carbon emitting gas boilers. We specify energy efficient appliances and light fittings and where appropriate use solar panels to generate the energy to power these.
We also want our buildings to have a positive impact on the immediate environment. We aim to promote biodiversity through our landscape design, creating environments that are both beautiful to look at and to use, as well as being attractive to wildlife. We plant plenty of new trees, incorporate bird and bat boxes, and use specific planting that promotes bee populations. We also use green roofs and deploy sustainable drainage systems in the form of ponds to reduce pressure on the sewer systems and create a diverse biosphere.
Richard Markland Architects is an RIBA chartered architecture practice with a passion for creating beautiful and functional buildings where our clients can delight in living, working or taking their leisure.
Our experience ranges from designing private houses, galleries and spas to modelling town centre developments and designing rail stations. We approach every project with the same creativity, enthusiasm and care.
Unlike some practices, we do not have a `house style’ that we apply to all our work - each project is developed closely with our clients, embracing their individual tastes and aspirations to create something that is truly unique to them.
Whilst we do not have a house style, we do have an approach that characterises our buildings – one that is dedicated to refinement and simplification, resulting in calming, welcoming environments.
We have the capability to manage small or large projects through design, planning, costing and construction. We are committed to ongoing clear and open communications with our clients so they can be confident that their project will be completed on time, to the highest quality standard, and within budget.
We are also highly progressive in our use of technology, enabling us to work more efficiently, produce better designs, and reduce costs. Our innovative use of Virtual Reality (VR) means that clients can really see and experience their property before it is built and at each stage of development, providing surety and understanding of what will be delivered.
Please do get in touch with us. We love talking about architecture and buildings and we welcome any inquiries or questions you may have, no matter how small.