23 Paradise Street (also known as William Gaitskell House) is a Grade II listed Regency era town house dating from 1814. Subsequently extended and used as a Police Station from 1836-1965, and from then on as offices, the house is one of the few structures within the neighborhood to survive the blitz of the Second World War.
Located within the King Edward III’s Rotherhithe Conservation Area, and the curtilage of the Scheduled Monument of King Edward III’s Manor House, the site, adjacent the south bank of the Thames, is an area of significant archaeological importance.
Burwell Architects obtained planning and listed building consent to return the property to residential use in the form of seven apartments, including two duplex apartments at the lower levels. Consent was also obtained for a two storey 3 bedroom house within the grounds of the original back garden and a four storey 3 bedroom house abutting the northern gable of the original property where terraced housing was once located.
The house’s original interior partitions and features had been removed during the 1970’s and the proposals re-introduced the historic room hierarchies, treating kitchens as pieces of furniture sitting within the reintroduced historic setting, and discretely integrating modern services into the new fabric. A new external staircase provides access to the apartments located within the police station annex.
The scale and sitting of the new build elements is sympathetic to the original building. The aim being to create a subservient, yet confident relationship between the old and new structures.
The facades utilise a combination of dark brickwork together with gold aluminium to create a framing system to provide an underlying order to the composition. The dark brick was chosen following liaison with the Design and Conservation officers and was selected to allow continuity of texture and material within the context of a confident, contemporary composition.