TV architect bowled over by beauty of the Suburb

PUBLISHED: 14:37 24 September 2008 | UPDATED: 15:24 07 September 2010

Miguel Cullen A HAMPSTEAD Garden Suburb home has been chosen as the subject of the latest study by a leading architect and draughtsman. Ptolemy Dean, famed for his work on the BBC series Restoration, was so bowled over by the beauty of houses in the subur

Miguel Cullen

A HAMPSTEAD Garden Suburb home has been chosen as the subject of the latest study by a leading architect and draughtsman.

Ptolemy Dean, famed for his work on the BBC series Restoration, was so bowled over by the beauty of houses in the suburb that he approached one resident and asked to paint his home.

Richard Wakefield, 73 of Hampstead Way, answered a knock on the door from Mr Dean and has ended up becoming a star of the screen himself.

After the architect's brushstrokes depicted his home, he will now feature in a TV programme charting different architectural styles around England.

"With the interior sketch he made it look like Chatsworth" said Mr Wakefield.

"I was very pleased that the house was recognised.

"Ptolemy Dean was very enthusiastic about the views from the window, and about how effective the town planning was in this area.

"He was a very interesting man who talks fascinatingly about architecture and is highly interested in the detail. He's interested in the Suburb because it's a world-famous conservation area and because of the famous architects who have worked there.

"He sat near the road and drew the front of the house, and then sat in the hallway. The Hampstead Garden Suburb Trust gave him two or three addresses - he looked at a few places and decided that this was the house he wanted. We do have some unspoilt fireplaces and uncovered beams in the hallway."

Mr Wakefield's house was designed by the architect George Lister Sutcliffe and built in 1911. The 'arts and crafts' style derives from a rustic British and American movement from around the turn of the 20th century and was inspired by the works of John Ruskin, and a romantic idea of the craftsman taking pride in his work.

Speaking to the Ham&High, Mr Dean said: "It was a great example of an arts and crafts house.

"Hampstead Garden Suburb is the most celebrated arts and crafts suburb. The house has a real sense of space in a relatively small building. The style manages space really well.

"It is a very attractive, livable place. The placement of the doors and the windows contributes to a real feeling of space.

"The Suburb is beautifully put together in a carefully considered way - quite different from the way modern housing estates are built."

Mr Dean featured on the BBC programme Restoration where he starred as a 'ruin detective'. He also made a series called The Perfect Village where he visited 12 English villages and discussed their qualities.

His latest programme, featuring the Garden Suburb house, is being screened on Channel 5 at 2.50pm tomorrow.

Jane Blackburn, manager of the Hampstead Garden Suburb Trust, said: "The trust was approached by the TV company and asked for an example of an old house that was being lived in, in a contemporary way.

"Arts and crafts is one of the prevailing styles in the suburb and Richard's house is a delight."

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