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Do you know your architecture?

Do you know your architecture? Here’s a brief guide to the UK’s most widespread housing styles

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Georgian

Essentially, houses built between 1714 and 1837 are classed as Georgian. Though there’s quite a lot of variety in the period, the style is characterised by its Palladian influence, with classical order and understated decorative elements. Grand Georgian country houses are typical of the period, as are terraces and townhouses all over the country. 10 Downing Street is a classic example of Georgian architecture, as is much of the city of Bath with its grand listed terraces of symmetrical townhouses. Living in a Georgian townhouse has many advantages, including lovely spacious rooms with high ceilings and big windows, but beware: they tend to be tall and relatively narrow – so be prepared to walk up and down stairs a lot.

This stylish and lavishly refurbished four bedroom house in Laura Place, Bath, is a good example: set over four floors, it has generous proportions and an elegant feel. It is on the market with Winkworth Bath, 01225 829 000 at £2.5m.

Another Georgian gem is this three bedroom house in Stockwell Park Road, London SW9, which has been updated by knocking through the kitchen and receptions on the ground and lower ground floors to create larger, open spaces. It is available through Winkworth Kennington 020 7587 0600 for £1.74m.

Regency

Regency style of the late Georgian period in the early 19th century is characterised by white stucco facades, columns, wrought iron balconies and elegant terraces or crescents. This Grade II listed terrace in Brighton’s Kemptown was built by renowned builder and Thomas Cubitt and is typical of the style: inside, floor-to-ceiling windows fill the rooms with light and marble fireplaces and wooden shutters add to the interior elegance. 

A two bedroom apartment in the building in Belgrave Place is for sale with Winkworth Brighton & Hove 01273 772 175 for £850,000.

In nearby Hove, this seafront building is a classic example of Regency architecture with its columns and wrought iron detailing. A three apartment in the block is currently on the market with Winkworth Brighton & Hove 01273 772 175 for £775,000. 

Victorian 

The reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901) was a great period for housebuilding, and much of the UK’s current housing stock dates back to this time. Today, a Victorian house with original features such as fireplaces, cornicing, encaustic tiles and colourful leaded window details is widely considered as a desirable property, though this hasn’t always been the case. Between the 1950s and the 1990s householders would routinely strip Victorian houses of all their features, block up fireplaces and fit UPVC windows and doors, while today’s buyers take the opposite approach and look to reinstate all the period details but change the layouts, which originally comprised lots of dark and poky rooms. Removing internal walls and extending to the side return creates spaces that are more suited to 21st century living.

This Victorian house in Greenhill Road, London NW10 has been extended to the loft and the side return to create a spacious home for contemporary living while retaining original fireplaces, floorboards and ceiling roses. It’s on the market with Winkworth Kensal Rise & Queens Park 020 8960 4947 at £1.15m.

And in this house in Percy Road W12, original features come into their own as high ceilings and cornicing integrate into an otherwise contemporary interior to create a stylish London home. It’s available to buy through Winkworth Shepherds Bush & Acton 020 8735 3266 at £1.5m. 

Edwardian

The Edwardian period was quite brief, lasting from 1901 to the beginning of the war in 1914. Still, houses built at this time have a distinctive style, heavily influenced by the Arts and Crafts movement. Houses were often wider than Victorian ones, with wider hallways and fewer rooms thanks to the decreasing prevalence of servants. Red brickwork, wooden porches and front gardens characterise Edwardian houses, and inside there was parquet flooring and more natural light. It was at this time that housebuilding spread to the suburbs.

A good example of an Edwardian semi-detached house is this well-kept redbrick house in Hatherley Road, Winchester, which has four bedrooms and retains details such as picture rails, fireplaces, sash windows and original doors. It is for sale through Winkworth Winchester 01962 866777 for £1.295m

Between the wars

As many as 19 million houses were built in the interwar period, when a surge in housing demand combined with a devastated economy led to a focus on functional building. This is the age of the 1930s semi – associated for some with dreary suburban life, and for others with comfort and practicality. Many of these homes were sadly destroyed in the Blitz, but they remain typical British housing.

This three bedroom house in Parkside Crescent, Surbiton KT5 is a good example with its rounded bay windows, large garden and spacious feel; it is for sale through Winkworth Surbiton 020 38610010, priced at £750,000.

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