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List Entry Summary

This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.


List entry Number: 1246044



The building may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

County: Greater London Authority

District: Wandsworth

District Type: London Borough


National Park: Not applicable to this List entry.

Grade: II*

Date first listed: 22-Dec-1998

Date of most recent amendment: Not applicable to this List entry.

Legacy System Information

The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System: LBS

UID: 472042

Asset Groupings

This list entry does not comprise part of an Asset Grouping. Asset Groupings are not part of the official record but are added later for information.

List entry Description

Summary of Building

Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.

Reasons for Designation

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Legacy Record - This information may be included in the List Entry Details.



1207/18/10055 Denmead House


Block of 75 maisonettes. Designed 1952-3; built 1955-8 by the London County Council's Architect's Department, Colin Lucas Architect in Charge, J A Partridge, W G Howell, J A W Killick, S F Amis, J R Galley and R Stout job architects. W V Zinn and partners, engineers. Reinforced concrete in-situ frame of board-marked concrete now painted, with storey-height prefabricated concrete with Dorset shingle and Derbyshire spar exposed aggregate; flat roof. The plan consists of five tiers each of fifteen maisonettes each a 12' bay, raised on alternating lines of two and three piloti at bay intervals along the ground floor. The nine bays sout of the lift shaft are left open. Top of lift shaft and services expressed on roof as geometric shapes. Double-height lift landings, paved. Each maisonette has private balcony facing east, and gallery access from west; the upper three tiers of flats additionally with steel emergency access balconies at bedroom level. Timber windows (original) with opening casements and flush timber doors. Each maisonette with kitchen and living room on lower level, two bedrooms and internal, mechanically ventilated bathroom and toilet (a new departure in planning) on upper level; internal fittings not of special interest. Ramp of board-marked concrete in front of lifts incorporates Corbusian-style drip mould, much imitated in the most progressive architecture of the time. The slab blocks devised by this team are inspired by Le Corbusier's Unite d'Habitation in Marseilles, which Howell and others had visited in 1951. The proportions are based on his 'Modulor' and the Fibonacci number sequence. The expression of each maisonette as an individual element in the facade marked a new rigour and sophistication in the LCC's pioneering slab design. The placing of the slabs into the side of the hill, a revision made in 1953, is a powerful and skillful response to their landscape setting in Downshire Field - an C18 landscape much remodelled and enhanced by the team; the steep slope gave purpose to the pilotis. The relationship of the blocks to each other and the landscape is a 'majestic' piece of town planning (Ian Nairn). They are the centrepiece of the Alton West estate, the LCC's most ambitious post-war development scheme and considered 'probably the finest low-cost housing development in the world' (G E Kidder Smith).

Listing NGR: TQ2180274216

Selected Sources

Books and journals
Bruckmann, H, Lewis, D L, New Housing in Great Britain, (1960), 60-98
Kidder Smith, G E , The New Architecture of Europe, (1961), 42-4
Nairn, I, Modern Buildings in London, (1964), 62-63
Pepper, S, 'The Cambridge Guide to the Arts in Britain' in Housing At Roehampton, (1988), 279-287

National Grid Reference: TQ 21802 74216


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End of official listing