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Ström Architects is a contemporary architecture practice based in the New Forest. We specialise in unique modern homes, and high-end developer lead schemes.

The practice was founded in 2010, and since then has grown in size and in reputation: we have been recognised through various awards - both nationally and internationally. Our work is mainly UK-based, but has also expanded to include projects on several continents.

We are a medium-sized office, but with a lot of passion for what we do. Our size means that we can offer a personal service to our clients, yet we are big enough to have rigorous systems for the delivery of projects. We take pride in the positive, lasting relationships that we create.

At Ström Architects we operate an efficient team of staff. We offer a range of skills and experience in different areas, and we work to ensure the most appropriate mix of resourcing is assigned to each project.

We strive to achieve both efficiency and consistency in how we staff projects - this gives our clients confidence in a stable team structure, and fosters a successful professional partnership.

Our non-hierarchical open-plan studio and the white painted brick interior has a relaxed Scandinavian vibe about it. We take pride in our office and how it creates a comfortable work environment.

Once a month we all sit down to eat lunch together, and enjoy a more informal lunchtime chat. We also regularly host “Fika” - building on the Swedish tradition of making time to share a cup of coffee and a bite to eat with colleagues. At these Fika sessions we have a brief presentation by one of our team or external guests – very much like a ‘show and tell’ – about something that inspires us. This approach is not only healthy for office morale, but to our design skills. By sharing ideas and our interests, we ensure that we remain educated, engaged and invigorated – and we believe that this is reflected in our work.

The studio is located in the coastal town of Lymington, near Southampton and Bournemouth. We love where we work with both the New Forest and the Solent on our doorstep. The connection to nature is important in our work, and we practice what we preach.

We are 30 mins from Southampton Airport and our location allows us to work all over the UK, as well as internationally.

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Director


Business Operations Manager


Associate Director


Associate Director


Associate


Senior Architect


Senior Architect


Architect


Architect


Architect


Architectural Assistant


Architect Dog

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Magnus Ström BA(Hons) DipArch ARB RIBA SAR/ MSA

Director

Magnus has an avid interest in houses and homes, as well as interior and furniture design. This developed as a child growing up in Sweden being surrounded by - and brought up in - Modernist houses. He was fascinated by their beauty, and how design was part of daily life. When asked as a child what he wanted to be when he grew up, the answer was easy, and always – an architect.

Magnus founded Ström Architects in 2010 and is responsible for developing the vision of the practice and leading the design of projects. He works with a talented team of architects to deliver buildings that improve the life of people, inspire and offer delight. Throughout the project process he is directly involved and is passionate about the detail, ensuring that we deliver buildings where the architectural vision has been carried through to completion.

Magnus enjoys working with clients to create their dreams throughout the UK, but also internationally with houses in Sweden, Spain and the USA. His designs have been recognised by winning both UK and international architecture awards.

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Nicky Jones

Business Operations Manager

A keen interest in architecture and property development drew Nicky to work at Ström Architects; where she could bring her organisational skills to the office. Having lived in much older properties, Nicky is even being teased into ‘the light’ and coming around to the advantages of the bright interiors of Ström design. With three children, 2 dogs and a love of watersports and the forest, the Scandinavian philosophy of clean living seems more and more appealing.

For every creative office there needs to be a ‘Nicky’ who can help the wheels run smoothly and keep them doing so! From developing operational systems to managing appointments and finances; ensuring we have everything from insurance to coffee ; Nicky’s job is varied and keeps her busy!

 

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Emma Ward-Lambert BSc MArch, ARB

Associate Director

Emma was born and raised in Hong Kong, where all too often buildings would strive for simply an impressive façade – achieving a superficial impact without considering their inhabitants. Pushing against this, Emma’s interest in architecture lies in how clients use space, how the built environment can impact their behaviour or mood, and to what extent the homes we design reflect their everyday life.

Coming from a long line of engineers, but with a love of nature and sustainability, Emma is trapped between pragmatism and idealism. Thankfully this combines well within the practice: she relishes her role as champion of all things ‘green’ (including her vegan cakes which the rest of the Ström team are happy to devour), whilst also being a keen nit-picker when beautiful ideas aren’t buildable or are impractical to live with.

When she’s not busy at work, Emma can be found cooking up a storm in the kitchen, lifting weights at the gym, or dragging her dog and family out for walks around Lymington.

Hugh Richardson

Hugh Richardson BA (Hons) DipArch ARB

Associate Director

Hugh’s route into Architecture was through art college where a foundation course in fine art, sculpture, and graphic design triggered an interest in Architecture as both a profession and an art form. 

 

Having studied Architecture at Portsmouth, where he met Magnus, Hugh moved to London to begin his career at Wilkinson Eyre Architects. This was an exciting time which saw the office win two Stirling Prize Awards. 

 

During this time Hugh gained invaluable experience working on the redevelopment of the Museum of London and City and Islington College. Applying this experience to a masters in professional practice Hugh qualified as an architect in 2003.

 

Feeling a pull towards the coast Hugh accepted a job at John Pardey Architects (JPA) where he worked with Magnus on private houses and educational projects. While at JPA Hugh valued his role in the Building Schools for the Future programme where he worked with the late Sir Colin Stansfield Smith and HKR Architects in the redevelopment of the Eveline Lowe Primary School in Bermondsey. 

 

Hugh’s work in education continued during his time at Design Engine Architects where he worked as project architect for the new Les Beaucamps High School in Guernsey.

 

In 2018 Hugh joined Ström Architects where he oversees production information across the whole office, bringing his experience of delivering high quality complex architecture to the practice of crafting bespoke homes.

 

James Chapman

James Chapman BA (Hons) PG Dip Arch ARB

Associate

James came to study architecture through his love of hand-drawing and sketching. He has always been a dreamer and enjoys nothing better than imagining the perfect home, using drawings to explore all possible solutions.

During his formal education, the process of design fuelled his passion for art and contemporary culture which has informed his interest in design. James’s appreciation for domestic architecture was encouraged by a particularly enthusiastic professor who had an interest in Modern Scandinavian houses. The Villa Mairea by Alvar Aalto was an early inspiration for James, with its use of natural materials and the continuity between inside and outside spaces. This seed has grown, and whilst James has worked for numerous design-led studios on projects of various sizes, joining Ström Architects has allowed him to pursue his enthusiasm for bespoke houses – creating crafted spaces utilising beautiful natural materials.

As a project architect, James enjoys working alongside Magnus and the team to bring designs from the drawing board to their reality on site. He delights in the process of architecture, and the creative, collaborative relationships with clients and building specialists.

Adam Lansdown Bridge

Adam Lansdown-Bridge BA (Hons) PG Dip Arch

Senior Architect

Catching the architectural bug at an early age with his bus-pass toting grandmother, Adam travelled across all the cathedrals of southern England, drawn to the drama and delight architecture can imbue.

 

From the initial sketching at project inception, crystallising people’s dreams and ambitions into a tangible scheme, to tackling the reality and unexpected challenges of realisation through construction, Adam relishes problem solving and the continual learning process of practising architecture.

 

An avid lover of exploring new places, good food and a punishing workout he’s oft found maxing out his National Trust and Historic England passes (and their tearooms).

 

Adam joined Ström Architects as a Senior Architect in 2020 having worked in London and Hampshire on award winning educational and residential projects.

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Hugo Pace BA (Hons) PG Dip Arch ARB

Senior Architect

Hugo’s passion for architecture came through his love of sculpture, having completed a foundation course at Chelsea School of Art and Design, after which he studied architecture at University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.  

 

With more than 15 years’ experience in the architectural profession Hugo has a range of experience having worked for many years in London and over 9 years in Sydney.  Hugo is always keen to draw on the knowledge he gained while working on contemporary projects in Australia, where the climate and environment lends itself to modern architecture.

 

Hugo believes successful buildings can be achieved with a genuine architectural language that demonstrates consistency of materials, refined detailing and innovative construction, as well as the right response to the contextual setting.  He values the high standards of development and detail maintained by the practice to create inspiring and remarkable houses.

 

Away from the practice, Hugo enjoys nothing more than the tranquillity and calm of being near the water.  Whether he is swimming, on a board or holding a rod all things water related is consistent with his calm and balanced approach to his work.

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Mark Turner BA (Hons) PG Dip Arch

Architect

Mark’s enthusiasm for architecture started at a young age with a constant desire to build, using anything and everything to construct complex models and a constant wish list for the latest Lego. This has evolved through his studies and career in architecture to focus on residential projects, with a desire to create amazing spaces that utilise natural materials and light. 

His university work was shortlisted for a President’s Silver Medal award, the highest accolade for UK students of architecture, and focused on the gentrification of a failing northern town using a kit of reusable parts to create personalised architectural solutions. 

Professionally, Mark has worked on many large scale, award-winning residential projects around the UK. Mark joined Ström in 2021 to pursue more tailored housing projects with a greater emphasis on materials and refined spaces with beautiful end results for the owners.

During his spare time, Mark can be found outside swimming, running, or cycling, no matter the weather. With a few marathons under his belt, he is still hopeful for entry into the London Marathon. Fingers crossed! 

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Ross Couper BA (Hons) PG Dip Arch

Architect

Ross’s interest in architecture centres around authenticity, with a specific focus on the poetics of construction and experience of space. This is something he explored in his masters’ thesis, which was subsequently adapted into a short film and featured at a number of film festivals.

Ross joined Ström Architects in 2019 having previously worked for practices on the south coast of England and south west coast of Wales. Alongside his time in architecture, Ross has spent time working on construction sites in the UK and Australia, where he had the chance to challenge how the design translates from the drawing board to the building site.

In his spare time Ross can be found scouring the coastline in search of waves – a practice that filters into his approach to architecture: focussing on the unique constraints created by the rhythms of the world around us. Ross is obsessed with attention to detail and the successful communication of a concept from the initial stages of design, all the way through to construction and articulation of materials on site.

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Jordan Crompton BA (Hons) PG Dip Arch

Architect

Jordan’s journey into the field of architecture started from a first-hand discovery of construction methods when partaking in an early bricklaying & construction course. Albeit an unconventional introduction to architecture, it allowed him to develop an expertise in hands-on craft.

 

Looking to apply his early construction knowledge, he travelled to Borneo where he explored the Sabah region whilst teaching and helping to build a new school house. During this time he was able to experiment with local aggregates to find the best sustainable materials to use when designing the foundations for an elevated timber school. Seeing the impact deforestation has had on the local communities drilled into him the importance of minimising environmental damage, which is reflected in Jordan’s design ethos today. 

 

Throughout his previous employment at Liddicoat & Goldhill, he has gained an appreciation for high-end residential schemes. This experience allowed him to challenge the conventional use of material, often highlighting the exposed industrial palette to create distinct contemporary dwellings.

 

In his downtime, Jordan can be found trying to create the next classic dance anthem and on Sundays warming his football team’s bench. 

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Rui Charnock MA Arch (Hons) Lisbon

Architectural Assistant

Coming soon...

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Henry BArk

Architect Dog

I like sticks. A lot. Also, I love barking but I am VERY friendly, so if you visit please don't be scared of me.

John Pardey Architects in Association with Strom Architects

1. We get to know our clients

Each of our clients have their own dreams and drivers behind their project. To develop the brief, we don’t just have to listen to our clients, we have to understand them. This understanding forms the foundations for a successful project.

2. We tell our clients’ story through design

Our understanding allows us to be in tune with our clients’ dreams. Design is the narrative that tells their story, and reflects their personality.

3. We take away worry and risk

Embarking on a bespoke one-off house invariably has elements of worry and risk. Through experience we know the typical risks, and identify project specific ones early on in our involvement.

We have an excellent planning record and we work collaboratively with the local Planning Authority, encouraging them to take ownership of the project with a design that becomes a local exemplar.

We produce extremely thorough Technical Design documents; this process ensures that all decisions are made up front, rather than forcing hasty decisions on site. Through careful planning we guide you through the project to ensure that the decision-making process doesn’t become overwhelming. We remain closely involved during the construction stage, with inspections to ensure the quality is in line with the Contract Documents and the best outcome is achieved.

We will always be straight with you regarding cost. We have a good understanding of the costs involved in building a bespoke house, and we work with an experienced cost consultant with whom we have done numerous projects. We keep an eye on cost throughout the whole process. Detailed cost information at an early stage ensures that you - as well as the project team - understand the cost constraints to ensure the viability of the project. We believe that it is irresponsible to promise you the world, with a budget and design that are out of sync.

4. We offer intangible qualities in our buildings such as reprieve in a stressful world

We bring value to you that goes beyond simply owning a high quality contemporary house. We create places where memories are made, that nurture relationships and that bring joy. Our designs connect with nature and offer intangible qualities – such as reprieve from a busy world, or a feeling of being ‘home’.

5. We love what we do, we’re good at it, and we deliver it

As architecture goes, the one-off house is the most rewarding building we can work on. We love the direct relationship between our clients and the houses we design. What we love even more, is how we are able to transform the way clients live, and the difference we can make to the quality of their lives.

The relationship between architect and client is extremely important, and we place great significance on rapport and engaging on a personal level.

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Whilst we would love to be able to work project of all sizes and budgets, our size and operating costs unfortunately dictate that we cannot realistically undertake projects with a construction cost under £500,000. It is important that we are open and honest with clients from the outset, and we hope that you understand our constraints.

It is hard to give generic advice on what a new build one-off contemporary house will cost to build as there are many variables affecting this. We would typically advise that one of our house designs starts at around £3,500/ m2, but can quickly go north, depending on the site, location, design, specification, and what one actually includes in this cost. We would also advise that you may want to consider an allowance for fit-out (built-in furniture, curtains and blinds, loose furniture etc.) and landscaping.

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Our fees vary depending on the size of project, complexity, and our offered scope of work. Typical fees range from 8-15% of build cost.

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We get to know our clients to understand and develop briefs We tell our clients’ stories through design We take away worry and risk We offer intangible qualities in our architecture such as reprieve in a stressful world We love what we do, we’re good at it, and we deliver it.

Our work is mostly based in the UK, but we have several international projects with work in Sweden, Spain and the US. We love to work in all different environments, and do not see location as a restriction on where we work.
It depends! We have delivered projects from first client contact to handover in less than two years, which is quick for a highly bespoke one-off house. We can normally deliver a design up to and including planning consent in 6-9 months. To complete Technical Design and tender the building/ choose contractors typically takes 6 months. The construction period is around 12-14 months. We always produce a programme at the start of the project and continually update this throughout the process.

We provide full architectural services from inception to completion. Our services are offered at three different levels; Good, Better and Best. All levels provide the same design quality and scope of work up to an including Planning Consent. For Technical Design our service structure offers flexibility for our clients. ‘Good’ offers Full Technical Design, Procurement and on-site services ‘Better’ is the same as above, but we do detailed drawings and specification of kitchen and bathrooms etc. ‘Best’ offer all of the above, plus interior design, bespoke joinery design, selection of furniture, a physical model as well as photo-realistic computer generated images.

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Most clients come to us when they already have a site. The majority of our projects are on sites where we are demolishing an existing house. In many ways, this makes life easier, as the principle of development is already established. There are also websites such as www.plotfinder.net , and there are land agents and individuals who specialise in sourcing land and property suitable for development.
It may sound obvious, but choose an architect whose work you admire. Don’t just assume that a local architect will do a better job because they have local contacts. Secondly, go and visit your architects’ office and meet with them to discuss your project and your aspirations, and listen to how they propose to guide you through the process and deliver your home from start to finish. Finally, choose an architect/ team that you like and have good rapport with! You will work closely with your architect over a long period of time and it is important that you share the same aspirations for the project and get on as human beings!

Sustainability

We don’t claim to be ‘eco-architects’, as we don’t believe that such a thing should exist. All designers have a responsibility to consider the environmental impact that their designs have – whether that be during construction, during the building’s lifetime or at the end of its lifespan. Sustainability is inherently part of our design process. We integrate it without fuss – rather than allow it to be a primary driver of the design.

We start with passive ways in which our designs can be more environmentally conscious, before looking to renewables. These technologies have their place, but it is essential to get the basics right first.

We use an energy hierarchy as an effective way of reducing building carbon emissions:

  • Be mean: reduce the demand for materials, energy, water and other resources
  • Be lean: ensure that materials and systems are used responsibly and efficiently
  • Be green: supply any remaining energy requirements from renewable sources

These considerations are second-nature to us, allowing the first principles of sustainability to be immediately integrated into the basic design. We can then look at introducing technologies to boost a building’s credentials.

The desire for a certain level of sustainability can be assessed early-on during the briefing stage, so that the client’s aims can be integrated in the most appropriate way.

To assist us, we often work with Sustainability Consultants to evaluate options and help develop proposals to suit each project.