Wildfowl Cottage — Cambridge


Designed to compliment the rescue of a derelict former waterside inn, this extension provides a new room acting as a refuge above the 100-year flood level.

Through an exceptionally long gestation, with prolonged exchange with the planning and conservation authority, a single room has been created which responds carefully to the rich contexts of the listed house and the remarkable surrounding landscape.

The room is thought of as a contemporary interpretation of a vernacular building and demonstrates that careful modern design is appropriate in the context of a listed building. It rejects the notion that conservation work should be bland and bloodless.

View of Wildfowl Cottage across Baits Bite Lock

The new room is raised above the surrounding landscape to protect it from floods

The extension sits between the renovated house and another watercourse

A material language of cedar shingles complements the cottage's clay tiled roofs

The form of the extension reflects the sloped plains of the cottage's roofs

The cottage required substantial renovations with new foundations and ground floor slab installed around the historic building fabric

The new room provides a refuge from floods, whilst the space it creates contrasts with the cottage's interiors

Where the existing cottage's spaces are low and dark, the new room is flooded with light

Photography by Richard Davies



Unit 14
21 Wren Street
London WC1X 0HF
t +44 (0)20 7837 7221
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Gwydir Street
Cambridge CB1 2LJ
t +44 (0)1223 516009
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2 King Edward Street
Oxford OX1 4HS
t +44 (0)1865 684004
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We are keen to receive CVs and short portfolios from Part 1 and Part 2 designers. Please contact us via recruitment@5thstudio.co.uk

We actively encourage qualified applicants who are Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic, disabled, female and LGBTQIA+ as these groups are under-represented throughout the built environment professions.