How to choose the right architects for your project

Doing your research into the architects you should choose for your project might seem daunting, and it’s completely understandable if you do feel a little overwhelmed. Beginning a new extension, new build, or commercial premises takes a lot of planning and organisation. We’ve put together a brief walk-through on how to choose the right architects for your style and peace of mind and what to consider when you meet with them.

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Five Of The Latest Trends In Architecture In 2019

If you are considering hiring an architect to design a new home or space then you should be aware of what kinds of things are going to be popular during 2019.   If you would like to learn more about the latest trends in architecture please give us a call on 0114 2361366 or 01246 383707.

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Think About This Before You Start Any Home Renovation

The planning stage of any home improvement scheme is critical to the success of the overall project, and by hiring an architect you can make life so much easier, and move ahead with the building work in total confidence. Consult an architect and you save time, money and wasted effort, whilst having the benefit of an expert on-hand to give you advice about planning, budget and building design.  Seek their advice early on and also consider some of the following processes as you plan and prepare for your home renovation.

Be realistic with your expectations and look at the bigger picture

Extensions and home renovations aren’t simple fixes so be prepared to look at the bigger picture when you are planning any scopes of work. As well as choosing an architect, you will need to find a builder and if the work requires planning permission, this will need to be approved.

Be realistic about how long the process is going to take, and the type of disruption this is going to cause. Your home will be turned into a building site for a while, are you ready to embrace this and endure this until the work is finalised? It’s something you’ll have to get used to in the short-term before you see any long-term gains.

 Have a clear plan and create a timetable for the work involved

Budget as much as you can for the building work and discuss the figure you have in mind for the project with your architect at the start. People often underestimate how much money they will actually need to bring their dreams to life and this can lead to future problems if they don’t have an adequate budget.

Talk through the finances you have available with your architect, and they can tailor the project to suit your requirements and create solutions that work well within your price range.

Stick to the plan

Once you have agreed on the plan for the building work with your architect, stick to your guns. Don’t attempt to change things once the plans have been approved and the building work is due to commence, as this can have a detrimental impact on the overall project. 

Last-minute changes are likely to cost you even more money, and they can set the scheme back which has an impact on the budget and the timescale for the development work.    

Consider the impact on your neighbours

Planning permission can be complicated at the best of times, so the last thing you need is neighbours putting a spanner in the works by objecting to your renovation work. Get them onside by talking to them at the start of the project, way before you submit anything to the planning department.  Chat with them about the design scheme, explain the level of work involved, and promise to invite them around for a drink to view the work once it has been completed.

Sweeten your neighbours up at the start of the home renovation project and they are less likely to object to the plans you have in mind.

Are you considering extending or renovating your home and would you like expert advice? Don’t hesitate to contact us here at Brightman Clarke Architects to discuss your plans and call us on 0114 321 1869 or get in touch with us online.  

Merry Christmas from Brightman Clarke Architects

Merry Christmas from Brightman Clarke Architects

Brightman Clarke Architects would like to take the opportunity to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

2017 has been very exciting and successful year which has seen us work on a wide range of fantastic projects in Sheffield and Chesterfield.  We haven't update our website in a while, but please check back in 2018 for a host of new projects which will be added to our portfolio pages. 

2018 is all set to be even more exciting as we will be relocating our offices to larger office, based Dore village, Sheffield.  We will also welcome a new architect to our team in January as we continue to grow and expand.


We will keep you posted with regular updates and we will let you know as soon as the new office is ready!  

Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year to everyone.

Simple Tips for Building an Eco-Friendly Home

Now more than ever, it’s important for us to do what we can to ensure our construction projects are environmentally-aware and cause as little damage to the planet as possible. Here are just some of the options we talk through with our clients at Brightman Clarke Architects.

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architect sketch

As Brightman Clarke Architects approaches it's first Birthday, we take a look at the work carried out in the first 12 months of this new partnership.


February 2016 is where it all started for us, when we formally merged Brightman Architects and Jonathan Clarke Architectural Design, registering our new practice, Brightman Clarke Architects. Since then it's been a busy year that has seen not just our portfolio expand but also our numbers as we welcomed Mick Dennis, an experienced architectural technologist (with a Masters degree in sustainable architecture) to our ranks in October 2016.


Firstly, in March we celebrated two more small housing developments gain planning permission. The first scheme, four contemporary inspired detached new build homes on Hallgate Lane in Chesterfield.

Hallgate Lane

Hallgate Lane

And the second, a more traditional development in Duckmanton, Chesterfield (architects site progress photos below). This project  consists of a detached four bedroom and pair of three bedroom semi detached homes, sympathetically designed to nestle between established houses either side of the site.




This was then quickly followed by a planning approval being granted by North East Derbyshire District Councils planning committee for an extension of a modest bungalow for conversion to create this stunning purpose built Children's nursery.

Nursery in Chesterfield

Nursery in Chesterfield

Building works have been taking place on this scheme since early summer and we are pleased to announce that the project is now almost complete and due to open its doors for business on Tuesday the 3rd of January. We hope you'll agree that the unique shape and distinctive architectural style of this nursery are both eye catching and vibrant.


Planning committee meetings were somewhat a regular occurrence for us 2016. We were again required to present, this time to Chesterfield Borough Council, a scheme for four new build homes in Brimington, Chesterfield (architectural images shown below) and again permission was granted. We have since prepared a full construction drawings package for the synfdicate of self build owners who are planning to start works on their own dream homes early in 2017. We hope to bring you updates on this development regularly through next year until completion.

Lodge Farm Chesterfield

Lodge Farm Chesterfield


We also received planning permission for this modern timber clad house extension on Station Road in Chesterfield (pictured below)

Station Road in Chesterfield

Station Road in Chesterfield


Works also started on site to convert, extend and remodel a modest bungalow into a stunning, contemporary themed modern family home (architectural images below). Once complete the first floor lounge will be situated on the front of the house, benefiting from a modern open balcony that has breathtaking views out over the Peak District beyond.

Moorcroft Road

Moorcroft Road

In fact, we were retained to monitor construction works on this project and have enjoyed keeping a close eye on the building process. The house is now water tight and as you can see (progress photos from our recent architects report) the transformation is almost complete. We will be bringing you our final as built photographs early spring next year.


We've also seen our Newfield Crescent project built. A modern single storey development consisting of two small single storey extensions to the back of an existing bungalow to create an open plan living kitchen and a separate master bedroom with en-suite. Both extensions open up on to the back garden to bring the internal and eternal spaces closer together.


We have seen great onsite progress for this traditionally  themed two storey side extension (designed to match the existing house) with a contemporary single storey extension to the rear. We love how the black bricks contrast with the vibrant timber cladding to enhance both architectural features. We hope to see this completed early on in 2017.

Vernon Road, Sheffield

Vernon Road, Sheffield


Here we have another project that we have competed this year, a contemporary timber clad extension to the back of an existing bungalow.

Stumperlowe Croft

Stumperlowe Croft

Again we have used timber cladding and black bricks, however in this instance the black bricks are set back to create an architectural illusion of timber pods floating above the ground.


We also have a number of projects currently under development at various stages of the design and planning process.


This particular scheme is for a small and intricate new build home to be built in the grounds of an existing house.  Due to the surrounding street scape and gardens the site itself created a number of limiting factors, restricting the location of windows in the property whilst also informing the shape and size of the property. This resulted in an interesting and innovative design that forms a highly sustainable development.

New build house, Hertfordshire

New build house, Hertfordshire

The height of the home was limited to minimise impact on the surrounding homes and gardens and appears almost as a bungalow yet we have still achieved two generous sized bedrooms on the first floor.

The orientation of the building was also carefully considered to ensure that windows were provided to each room without overlooking the surrounding properties and additional day light penetrates deep into the living space via a large light well running the length or the lounge area.

Externally, we have used sensitive material selections to mimic the surrounding street scene, with both red and buff brickwork used (as found on surrounding homes) to create and emphasise architectural features of the building whilst the use of charred timber cladding reflects an existing extension behind. This is applied to the "first floor" of the main elevations, which helps to break up the visual massing of the home further and creates a distinguished architectural feature.


Having worked on new build eco homes in the past, we couldn't be more excited to take these principals onto a larger scale to form a small eco development on the outskirts of Chesterfield (pictured below).

This contemporary housing scheme is still at conceptual stage. We're looking forward to taking it forwards in the new year and it will feature many sustainable features such as green roofs and a reed bed system for on site drainage in addition to an extensive woodland planting scheme.

Contemporary housing near Chesterfield

Contemporary housing near Chesterfield


We're currently progressing two housing developments for Poplar Farm Developments Ltd totalling 29 new build family homes in the Pilsley area of Chesterfield.

Pilsley Road (site Layout pictured above) received outline approval for upto 16 new homes whilst we are currently progressing the design development and planning phase for a further 13 new homes on the edge of the village at Locko Road (architects visuals below)


We're really excited about many of our projects which we will be progressing early in 2017, with many different architectural styles and themes, from a modern retail and commercial unit in the heart of Clay Cross to the conversion of an existing Georgian pub into apartments with a contemporary twist near the centre of Chesterfield.  We will also be starting work on a series of new sustainable new build passive apartments in Rotherham that will be built using SIPS panels with contemporary architectural features.

We're especially looking forward to developing a large 5 bedroom new build contemporary home in Fulwood Sheffield and we will be bringing you regular updates of this.  We have been appointed not only as the construction architects, but also to monitor site progress, holding regular design / construction team meetings and issuing subsequent architects reports to keep our client informed of progress.

Look out for these exciting projects here or on our facebook page.

You’ve decided on a loft conversion – now what?

Loft conversions are great for adding value to your home, and give you an extra bedroom, office or home gym to enjoy, but it’s difficult to know where to start and everything you need to consider. At Brightman Clarke, we work with a number of families who choose loft conversions due to being able to increase the capacity of their home without the stress of moving. 

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The Benefits of Modern Architectural Design to your Life

Contemporary architecture is more than a recently built structure, it’s a conscious effort to move away from the designs of the past and create something entirely new. This innovation drives contemporary architecture to push the boundaries and present you with a unique, creative, beautiful, yet functional and practical solution.

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