An extremely rare opportunity to live in a Grade II listed house designed by architect Neave Brown. The house forms part of a terrace of five houses, designed for the architect’s own occupation and a collective of four friends and their families. It was completed in 1965 and Grade II-listed in 2014, English Heritage recognised in its design ‘a distinctive community spirited vision of home life’.
This three-bedroom house is situated in Dartmouth Park, and is arranged over three floors — connected internally by a central spiral staircase. The main entrance is on the first floor, accessed from the street spiral stair and a small balcony. This opens into a hallway with cloakroom and bathroom to the left and, at the back of the house, a large kitchen/dining area with doors onto a private terrace, from which a spiral stair descends to the shared garden.
The lower ground floor, originally intended as children’s bedroom, has its own street entrance. There is a utility room at the front and a large flexible space at the back. The upper floor contains the main living area (overlooking the garden) which is separated by a pivot door from the master bedroom at the front of the house.
Winscombe Street sits between Highgate Village and Dartmouth Park, with the open spaces of Waterlow Park and Hampstead Heath within easy reach. There is an excellent café called Cricks Corner nearby, as well as several popular gastro pubs, including St John’s Tavern, the Bull & Last, the Flask, the Lord Palmerston and the Southampton Arms. Archway Underground station (Northern Line) is a short walk away.
Neave Brown (1929–2018) worked on three housing projects in the Borough of Camden — all have received listed building status. Brown spent the majority of his childhood in the US, before coming to London after the Second World War to study at the Architectural Association.
With the ambition to design his own house for his young family, he joined forces with a group of friends to form a housing co-operative. They persuaded Camden Borough Council to lend them the money to buy a neglected pocket of land in Dartmouth Park to build five homes. Camden agreed on the proviso that it would be built to Local Authority standards and space allowances. Yet, because of the cleverly arranged plan, they have a sense of space and openness that made them feel markedly more generous
The theme of these five identical houses — the division of the space with the ‘adult zone’ on the top floor, the children’s bedrooms on the ground floor (with access to a communal garden) and the kitchen and dining areas in the middle — became a prototype for Brown’s later schemes at Camden: Alexandra Road (Grade II*) and Fleet Road (Grade II) and he was a key figure in Camden’s architecture department, under Sydney Cook, influencing the design of a number of estates including Benson and Forsyth’s Mansfield Road and Lamble Street, Gospel Oak, and Peter Tabori’s Highgate New Town (Stage 1). Brown received the prestigious RIBA Gold Medal in 2017.