I’ve always liked names that ‘say what you do’, when choosing the name for my own company, ‘Soul Architects’ I gave it a lot of thought! I wanted something that said what I was offering and that’s where the word ‘architects’ came from, but I also wanted something that said a little more about me and the service I would be offering and that’s where the word ‘soul’ comes in. I think of ‘soul’ as being a moral sense of identity, an honesty, and that’s something I offer all of my clients.
Buildings have a soul, I believe architecture is about spirit and place; the essence of a building comes from its soul. Existing buildings have a soul that gives them character and by understanding the layering of time, the architecturally significant elements that create the spirit are revealed. New buildings also have a soul that can be taken from the place, the context of the site and the history of the local area and the architectural process brings these individual parts together to create the soul.
We are always pleased with a success story and we were thrilled to hear that our friend Liz has ‘taken the bull by the horns’ and started her new company Humble Heritage. The name says it all, Liz works in the ‘heritage’ sector and her surname is ‘Humble’, but she is also modest and unassuming. I have known Liz for a number of years and was first introduced to her via a project that I was working on whilst at a former practice. Liz has always impressed me as someone who really knows what she is talking about, her competence is backed by her knowledge of historic buildings and the expertise that she has gained over the years. She offers a range of services that complement the projects that I undertake and I use her for work that involves historical research and which often includes visits to local archives.
Barrow Hill Roundhouse Engine Shed and Railway Museum
I have had the pleasure of working with Liz on a number of projects and we are currently working together on Barrow Hill Roundhouse, where she has been a great source of input with a Conservation Management Plan for the site. The CMP will help us to understand the areas of significance – what matters and why and how to conserve and manage it, from this informed basis, we will develop a programme of repair and restoration for the existing building. The CMP will support proposals for the changes and will be the basis of the design phase of the extension.
I look forward to working with Liz on many more projects and wish her every success for the future in her new venture.