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We contacted Absolute Architecture as we were undecided as to whether to totally reconfigure our existing home or demolish it and start afresh. From our initial meeting Kate was knowledgeable and practical in her approach to our dilemma and we took the decision to new build. It was extremely important to us that the new build, whilst meeting our accommodation needs should also be in keeping with its environment and our budget. Kate offered several different design options and we opted for a linear building which we felt suited the site. The building construction and materials suggested by Kate has ensured the building has blended well into its environment and offers us a comfortable, practical, energy efficient home which we continue to be delighted with and we would not hesitate in recommending the services of Absolute Architecture.

– S&P
Newbury, Berkshire


Green architecture new build for a canal side cottage in Newbury, Berkshire

With a flood threatened historic cottage on an island site on the Kennet & Avon Canal, the homeowners approached Absolute Architecture to help them come up with a solution for their home. The property in its current state was terrible to live in but loved by many, especially those passing by on the canal.

After discussing their options and creating architecture design concepts, the solution was to design a new, light weight timber framed cottage. This way it could be craned over and assembled on a piled raft. The form and materials are simple, drawing on the time-honoured techniques and materials of the surrounding boat yard.

Location: Kennet & Avon Canal in Newbury, Berkshire

Materials: The decision was made to clad the new build in western red cedar, so the cottage would weather naturally and blend with the environment. The zinc roof and some grey flecked brickwork completes an honest palette of materials.

Clever aspects: This is a cosy cottage and is built to enhanced code for sustainable homes level 4 standards. It is all heated by a water source heat pump tucked in below the canal banks.

Friends on the project:  Greenham Construction worked with us to build this project, combining craftsmanship and logistical astuteness to manage a difficult building site.

We love: The way this building is ageing and settling in to its environment as if it has always been there. The new build of Greenham Lock Cottage is now held in equal affection with canal goers and is a landmark on this historic route.

Find out what we can do for you


Providing tailored support and services to see homes all the way through their transformation, Absolute Architecture are the go-to residential architecture business for ambitious dream homes that require a little extra creativity, inspiration or planning expertise. We are a RIBA Chartered and Passivhaus accredited practice based in Newbury, Berkshire. Absolute Architecture serves the Cotswolds, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and surrounding areas.




01635 528188


[email protected]


Commercial House
53B Kingsbridge Rd,
Newbury, Berkshire
RG14 6DY