The Daily Telegraph Homebuilding & Renovating Awards has been showcasing and celebrating Britain’s best homes for over 30 years. This year we asked you to submit your exceptional projects and you didn't disappoint!
We received hundreds of entries featuring houses of every size, shape and budget and we whittled these amazing homes down to a shortlist of 17 incredible builds.
This year's exceptional shortlist featured a range of unique and inspiring builds, from a sustainable cabin-like home in the Suffolk Broads to a quaint cottage renovation in rural Carmarthenshire. We’ve seen housing developments that give new meaning to the concept of ‘custom build’ and eco homes that showcase outstanding ingenuity.
Below, we reveal the winners in each category, along with our coveted Home of the Year and Reader's Choice awards. But don't forget to grab a copy of our January issue to read some of the full stories behind these incredible projects.
Home of the Year 2023
Home of the year & best self-build: Blackwood
- Architects: Charlie Luxton Design
- Location: Woburn, near Milton Keynes
This year's Home of the Year Award has been awarded to Duncan and Anaya Bush’s inspiring self-build. Not only is it a masterclass in house design, it masks a whole host of technologies that makes this one of the most eco-friendly homes you’re likely to come across.
“The minimalist monochrome interior of this clever suburban build belies the amount of thought and effort which has clearly gone into creating a thoroughly Healthy Home with, amazingly, no heating,” says judge Sian Astley. “There are lots of take-away tips for keen self-builders, as well as a super-stylish envelope, which I found very attractive.”
The couple took a hands-on approach at every stage – from originating the idea of creating a series of cubes to project managing the build, as well as taking an active part in the planting and landscaping – all of which took place in the midst of the pandemic.
Reader's Choice Award 2023
Best future facing home & reader's choice 2023: Northamptonshire Home
- Architects: Greenaway Architecture
- Location: Northamptonshire
Greenaway Architecture took the concept of accessibility to heart when designing this contemporary five-bedroom home on the grounds of a Grade II listed 16th century farmhouse. The finished home responds to the challenges of living with Motor Neurone Disease (MND), providing the occupants with accessible features for every stage or life – even when their mobility naturally diminishes.
The layout is open, flowing and functional with expansive glazing throughout the property to visually connect the occupants with the outdoors at all times, whether standing, sitting or lying down. Occupational Therapists and a Professor of Clinical Neurology & Neuroscience were consulted throughout the design process.
Home of the Future Sponsor
Sponsored by NIBE
For over 70 years, NIBE has manufactured energy-efficient and sustainable climate solutions for your home. Its wide range of products, including heat pumps, provides your home with heating, cooling, ventilation and hot water so you can create a perfect indoor climate with minimal impact on nature.
Our 2023 Winners
Best extension: Greenlawns
- Architects: Forest Architecture
- Location: Christchurch, Dorset
When it came to extending their family home in Dorset, the owners of Greenlawns were faced with a unique challenge. As their property was positioned adjacent to an angled boundary hedge, a conventional linear extension simply wouldn't suffice. So collaborating closely with Forest Architecture, they explored creative options to create an extension with dynamic angles and abundant natural light. They sought to capture views of the garden from nearly every room, resulting in a cantilevered design that efficiently shields the property from the summer sun with exposed brickwork and beams.
Connecting the indoors to the outdoors was paramount, achieved through a double-sided chimney breast and seamlessly extending joists into the cantilever. Material choice, including D71 Peterson brick, Siberian larch windows, and ash flooring, blends the extension with the main house. This broken-plan living approach caters to the family's needs, allowing for togetherness and private spaces. The finished extension is a masterstroke of design, striking a careful balance between beauty and practicality.
Best Extension Sponsor
Sponsored by IDSystems
For over 20 years IDSystems has set the standards for innovative glazing systems for self builders and renovation projects. Their multi award-winning product range includes the EDGE2.0 ultra-slim sliding doors and vistaline, the exclusive slide & turn system, alongside a complete glazing package of bespoke windows, doors and glass roofs.
Best contemporary home: Derwent Valley Villa
- Architects: Blee Halligan
- Location: The Derwent Valley
Taking its inspiration from the historic 18th-century red-brick cotton mills that still abound in the surrounding Derwent Valley area, this family home harnesses an architecture that is bold and purposeful.
“The house is a masterclass of restraint and rigour, both externally and internally — the detailing is exquisite, it shows just what can be delivered with a highly experienced architect,” says judge Darren Bray of Studio B.A.D. “It’s a modest piece of architecture, as it sits in the street scene very quietly, almost not announcing its presence to its neighbours and that’s always the mark of a successful piece of architecture.”
Meanwhile the interior is a treasure trove of playful surprises, including a semi-secret stairwell that leads up to a gallery overlooking a stunning double-height space, which is topped with a circular sundial rooflight that projects the passage of the day onto whitewashed timber walls.
Best green home: New Park Road
- Architects: RDA Architects
- Location: South London
This Modernist EnerPHit home has breathed new life into a dated 1960s building, seamlessly blending its original aesthetic with sustainable design and technologies. Facing extensive repair needs, including air leaks and dampness, RDA Architects chose transformation over demolition. The layout was modernised to enhance circulation, segregate private and public spaces, and integrate them with the garden. Elsewhere, meticulous attention was paid to recreate bespoke joinery.
The completed home is a triumph in sustainability, meeting Passivhaus standards and aligning with the RIBA 2030 Climate challenge. What’s more, it operates as a living lab, continually monitored to optimise performance and provide insights to the design community. Impressively, it consumes 88% less energy than an average UK home, thanks to a 7.8 kW PV panel system covering 77% of energy needs.
Judge Darren Bray hails it as “A model for adapting and retrofitting 20th-century homes, underscoring the importance of thermal efficiency upgrades”. He applauds the attention to detail and highlights its role in climate change mitigation and low-carbon targets in the UK.
Best Green Home Sponsor
Sponsored by Internorm Windows UK Ltd
High-performance, triple-glazed windows are an investment in your home. Suitable for Passivhaus, Internorm’s passion for innovation, sustainable manufacturing and energy efficiency, make it the go-to-brand for anyone building a green home. Contact us today for further information.
Best value project: Leytonstone
- Architects: Rees Architects
- Location: East London
This Victorian property in Leytonstone posed an intriguing challenge for its owners, who sought to expand the footprint of their two-storey, two-bedroom home despite having limited space in which to do so. A loft conversion was the ideal solution, so they enlisted Rees Architects to expand their property 'up' rather that 'out'. The finished loft conversion is a triumph, utilising every inch of available space to create a spacious master bedroom with an ensuite and an additional bedroom in the loft.
Judge Sian Astley commends the project, stating, "This inspiring and spacious loft extension is a breath of fresh air, defying the typical cramped spaces found in loft conversions. It brilliantly combines functionality with adventurous use of colour and materials. It's a game-changer for Regupol, just as Nigella did for semolina and maple syrup."
Similarly, Judge Darren Bray applauds the project's ingenious use of space, describing it as a 'masterclass in minimalistic living'.
Best renovation: Sheen Park
- Architects: Woodrow Vizor
- Location: Richmond, London
- Shortlisted for: Best Extension and Best Renovation
Woodrow Vizor worked closely with the owners of Sheen Park to transform their deteriorating 1940s semi-detached property into a modern family home that showcases their sense of creativity.
Crafted by the clients, one of whom is a product designer, the finished house is a fusion of artistry and functionality. At its heart lies an open-plan kitchen, living, and dining area with a 7m clear span timber-frame extension.
The rear elevation is divided into distinct sections, offering comfort and partial privacy. Birch plywood doors open to reveal a hideaway home study showcasing the client's design prowess.
Upstairs, an attic conversion and dormer installation create a master ensuite bedroom. The design enhances the sense of space, making the attic feel grander. The first-floor hallway is also expanded, prioritising light and volume. The renovation of the home included the addition of top-to-bottom insulation. The existing cavity walls remain accessible externally for potential future upgrades, making this a home for a lifetime.
Best interiors: Higher Dorsley
- Architects: VESP Architects
- Location: South Hams, Devon
- Shortlisted for: Best Conversion and Best Interiors
This Class Q barn conversion, located in the beautiful South Hams, is a truly remarkable family home and a fitting tribute to local agricultural architecture. Upon entry, Higher Dorsley's double-height kitchen and living space offers abundant natural light and courtyard garden views. "This property gives some serious wows," praises Judge Sian Astley. "From the soaring black steel framing, the impressive timber structure visible internally and the tactile, elegant larch cladding to the exterior. I love the external palette of materials used, complemented so well inside by the fluted oak kitchen and refined bathroom specifications. Gorgeously finished and not a part of it I didn’t enjoy looking at."
Best Interior Sponsor
Sponsored by Charlton & Jenrick
Established in 1986, Charlton & Jenrick has grown to offer a number of industry-leading brands covering all aspects and channels of the fireplace industry. Its gas fires are hand made in Telford, Shropshire, and both its gas and electric fires, plus its wood-burning stoves are sold through a dedicated network of over 400 showrooms around the UK.
Best conversion: Ansell's Barn
- Architects: Tyack Architects Ltd
- Location: Wyck Rissington, Gloucestershire
- Shortlisted for: Best Conversion
The owners of Ansell's Barn sought to transform several disused agricultural buildings into a contemporary, energy-efficient home that could house their growing collection of artwork.
To actualise their vision they enlisted the help of Tyack Architects, whose H-plan design linked together each of the historic cottages, a cart shed, and a Dutch Barn with contemporary glass structures to create an airy and expansive home.
This impressive conversion project tastefully references the buildings' history by using locally-sourced Cotswold stone and oak alongside steel, glass, and zinc. Not only does it preserve the site's agricultural character but also enhances the village green's views – transforming what was once an eyesore into a stunning contemporary house within the conservation area. The finished home has ample space to house the owner's art, plus it also offers various spaces for living and working and is a joy to inhabit.
Best Conversion Sponsor
Sponsored by Sunflex
A manufacturer of bespoke aluminium doors systems, including award-winning bifold doors and sliding doors. These products are supplied by recognised Sunflex UK distributors across the UK, ensuring you receive the products and installations that meet the highest standards of quality.
Spirit of self build: Woodfield
- Architects: Border Oak
- Location: Herefordshire
This modern oak-framed home is part of a larger custom and self-build collective scheme comprising nine homes. Over several years, Border Oak collaborated closely with the landowner to create a distinctive edge-of-village development, offering self-build, custom build, and custom finish plots of various sizes and designs.
Roxy, the landowners' daughter, built a contemporary two-bedroom with her own two hands, assisted by talented builders along the way. Her completed home features a spacious open-plan ground floor with an impressive oak-framed vaulted "garden room" and even incorporates a home gym. It's heated by an Air Source Heat Pump, super-insulated, virtually airtight, and solar-designed, using sustainable natural materials like oak, timber weatherboard, and slate. Roxy's achievement showcases her dedication, skill, and keen attention to detail, resulting in an affordable, sustainable, and beautifully finished first home. Bravo!
Best custom build: Webb's Meadow
- Architects: Oakwrights
- Location: Lyonshall, Herefordshire
Adjacent to the scenic village of Lyonshall, Herefordshire, Webb's Meadow is a pioneering custom build development built in strategic partnership with Oakwrights. Phase one of this 3½-acre development offered homeowners the opportunity to purchase one of 11 plots to build the oak-framed home of their dreams. Ranging from two to five bedrooms, each property was designed to be flexibly adapted to the individual homeowner's needs.
A crucial element in this project was the concept of the 'Plot Passport', which ensured that individual houses could be fully bespoke, while retaining an overarching aesthetic that was harmonious with the local vernacular. Webbs Meadows is the first part of a much larger project to invest in the future of the Lyonshall community and will be followed by exciting plans to renovate and revive the historic Royal George Pub at the heart of the village.
Highly Commended Projects
With so many brilliant entries this year, our judges had a difficult task selecting just one winner in each category. A special mention goes to our highly commended and shortlisted homes, which are all award-worthy projects in their own right:
- Sort Trae by HEM Architects: Highly Commended in Best Self Build Home and Best Contemporary Home.
- Bilton Fields by HB Architects of Rugby / BoBen Construction: Highly Commended in Best Custom Build.
- Creek Cabin by MAP Architecture in collaboration with Jon Broome Architects: Highly Commended in Best Green Home.
- Zion’s Hill by Adrian James Architects: Highly Commended in Best Renovation.
- Brynglas Cottage by VESP Architects: Highly Commended in Best Interiors.
- Treetops by OB Architecture: Highly Commended in Best Interiors.
Homebuilding & Renovating Awards 2024
Are you working on a project that you think is worthy of a Homebuilding award? Keep checking back to the Homebuilding website for updates on when The Daily Telegraph Homebuilding & Renovating Awards 2024 will be open for submissions.
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Gabriella is Homebuilding & Renovating's Assistant Editor. She is a DIY enthusiast and a lover of all things interior design. She’s spent the past decade crafting copy for regional publications, award-winning architects, and leading UK homeware brands.
She has a particular passion for historic buildings and listed properties, and she is currently in the process of renovating a Grade II-listed Victorian coach house in the West Country. At Homebuilding & Renovating Magazine, Gabriella is responsible for curating the magazine's home case studies and regularly contributes to the Homebuilding website.