The Rose and Crown: Materials

Although we have not been specifically asked to present materials, my thoughts and preferred colour pallet for this project are demonstrated in the following three images.

1. Paving materials – York Stone PavingThe geographic location of Essex means that there are few hard stones/materials that would be local to the region. Rather a gravel bed would sit better! I have chosen to use York as it is sympathetic to the historic surroundings and one of my favourite stones to use!


2. Gravel – A self bounding gravel is much more permeable than stone or obviously bound gravel which would create run off storm water to name but a few problems. The bound gravel works beautiffuly with the York stone and due to its formation once lightly compacted, becomes much more sturdy under foot than a loose gravel. Given the typical client of The Rose and Crown, this is a much more health and safety conscious choice of material.


3. Timber framed and clad external buildings – The typical architecture of the regional barn comes in the form of a black painted feather board clad building. the below image is a close up of the cladding material that i would intend upon using in this space.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Planting Elevations

I thought I may add a snap shot of the illustrations I have created as the small scale drawings don’t really do justice to the detail, form or structure that I am trying to demonstrate.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Planting Ideas

The idea that:

 “(Restaurant design is) A kind of zeitgeist shorthand that communicates the popular themes and preoccupations of the day.

Restaurant Design by Bethan Ryder

The statement that I found so interesting makes me wonder how I may incorporate the modern appeals of today to this space.

As previously mentioned:

“ The planting should be kept simple with minimal space for rubbish to be hidden. It should be stylish and perhaps a little contemporary as a sign of the modern times that we live in, with shelter and protection from neighbours that may well prefer not to look out onto the punters.”

This is the area I would like to investigate modern themes. Below is a show case of the particular plants and plant layout that currently appeal to me.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

The Buxus sepervivans is an ideal shrub within this design, not only does is provide year round structure and form to the space, but planted in the form of Tom Stuart Smiths Chelsea Show garden of 2009, the representation of the undulating landscape from afar marries perfectly within The Rosea and Crown grounds. If through the introduction of fencing and walls that encase this space, the borrowed landscape is uninteresting, then why not imitate the idea from within.

By introducing the Hakonechloa, not only do we look at introducing a texture bed and luscious backdrop, we introduce or rather add to the low maintenance approach that the landlords desire.

Both these plants scream out for the addition of colour. The Cornus alba ‘Sibirica’ would works beautifully amongst these two plants. The red bark in winter adds vibrancy and almost festive influences once the leaves have fallen, whilst in the summer months provides a hint of colour to brighten the borders.

The trees are native species and help screen the neighbouring properties that may not wish to look out into a beer garden. The multi stemmed Betula not only has a wonderful texture but a soft and feathery canopy when in leaf. The sound of the wind as it rustles through will help to absorb any noise whilst at the same time introducing its own melody to the environment below.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Design Concept

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Design – Development of Ideas

So what have I learnt?

1. The design style should not only respect the surrounding environment, it should enhance it. Writtle has been placed within a conservation area in order to preserve the historic relevance and beauty, careful consideration and thought must ensure respectful design styles and detailing.

It is a country pub and one should feel as though they are in the country, with space to breath and enjoy. Writtle is also within the Green belt and should try to preserve as much of the soft-scape as possible reducing the hard landscaped areas or replacing them with permeable surfaces. Although there are no surrounding fields, there is Writtle Village Green and it would be interesting to try to borrow this landscape when planning the gardens.


1. Their need for a specific entertainment area ties in with history, through not only the entertainments and performance of the Romans, but so too the saloons of the much more recent public house certainly to the South of the UK.

How should this area be incorporated into the design? Well it should certainly factor quite high in the ranks and should perhaps be a versatile area that can be one day used for staging events whilst at other times used for seating or housing the bouncy castle for the children.

Although this is a Country Pub that may very well have been a single room at one stage, it is a pub none the less and it would be nice to hint at tradition in a broad sense.  An exterior platform for such entertainment could be a way of considering this tradition.

2. There are certain formulas for parking and it is important for the residence of Writtle Green that excess parking, where possible, does not take up valuable space for other residence and/or their guests. There are many elderly clients to the pub and it would be ideal to allow for convenient parking that may take into account disabilities.

The Parking Standards are based on:

Hillingdon’s Interim Parking Standards adopted for planning decision purposes 2002; National Planning Guidance Planning Policy Guidance Note

Housing (revised) 2000; London Plan (2004); and Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) (Amendments) (England) Order 2005.

1 no. space per 50Sq M 2004 car parking standard – Public houses and wine  Parking bay sizes

The minimum dimensions of a standard car parking bay are 2400mm x 4800mm and for a wheelchair accessible car parking bay 3600mm x 4800mm. The minimum dimensions of motorcycle/moped/scooter parking bay are 1400mm x 2500mm. The minimum dimensions for a bicycle space are 600mm x 1800mm; single garages will be accepted as parking space for bicycles if their internal width exceeds 3500 mm or their length 5300 mm.  

Motorcycle, moped and scooter parking Parking spaces for motorised two-wheelers are in addition to those for cars and bicycles and should be provided at sites requiring 20 or more car parking spaces at the rate of 1 space per 20 car parking spaces. The parking spaces should be located as near as possible to the building entrance(s). Large developments will be expected to include changing and other facilities for motorcyclists and moped and scooter users.

Is it also possible to double up an area to accommodate more than one need? ie. Delivery/parking facilities? Would this allow for a simpler design, or would it create areas that are no good for anything? If the measurements allow then I will try to kill two birds with one stone as I believe this can only enhance the aesthetics of the grounds. I also found this infromation amoungst other diagrams of different types of carpark layouts:


1. When looking at the argument to retain or remove the part fallen barn the justification for a new building/storage facility must take into consideration the restrictions and disciplines enforced upon a. The Conservation requirements, b. The Green Belt requirements and c. The Planning requirements for Writtle.

2. Sheltered exterior seating may take the form of a courtyard inspired beer garden, overhead planting Vs man made materials may not be possible as this would not create a weather resistant spot, but there are ways of disguising the materials that ideally would not appeal to those key on tradition.

3. A low maintenance garden that serves all ages, but that functions not only as beer garden for the summer months but that may be utilised through the year.  There is a large Marquee erected in the space that with consideration and thought could quite easily become part of the dining experience. External lighting and a solid floor underfoot, perhaps looking at materials such a sawdust to tie in with the Public Bar traditions, or relating to the country roots of organic and rustic materials.

The planting should be kept simple with minimal space for rubbish to be hidden. It should be stylish and perhaps a little contemporary as a sign of the modern times that we live in, with shelter and protection from neighbours that may well prefer not to look out onto the punters.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Site Inventory and Schematics – Summery of Ideas

1. Firstly I wanted to identify the key areas and current locations of the different elements that make up the grounds as well as analysing whether or not this works or is right for the occupancy (both owners and client-base) based on the information they provided.

2.  I wanted to understand and identify the flow/rhythm of key elements, this then highlights to me the specific functions that should be accounted for and preferably where they may be positioned or what they may be positioned next to in the finished scheme.

3. Working out how these key requirements could work in the location once all existing elements are removed. Taking into account all the reading I have done so that the final design allows for not only the requirements of the clients, but those features that sympathise with the historic layout of the public house as well as looking to the styles of current and previous trends in and around Writtle.

4. There are a number or external factors that may influence the layout such as the aspect and movement of the sun throughout the year/day or the surrounding urban layout/environment that may influence the clients first impressions of the public house.

5. Pushing forward with the ideal schematic to a point where a design begins to emerge. I had two ideal schematics that I felt worked for me and it was through research and spacial requirements that could not be met that a final design emerged.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Photographic documentation of ‘The Essex Pub’

The following is a slide show that showcases over 30 typical Essex pubs. I have uploaded them in order of age from 1884 through to 2010.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Source –

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: A history of the Pub layout

If we are specifically looking into Pubs then there are any number of defining details and layouts that distinguish say a Southern pub from a Northern one.

INTERIOR:In the South for example, single or sometimes split entrances lead one through into either the saloon and/or Public Bar, the difference being that the Saloon hosted entertainment and the Public Bar was for the consumption of alcohol and social/healthy political debate.


THE SALOON: Usually carpeted and with other soft furnishings to provide comfort and a sense of luxuary these Saloons became the common drinking place for the middle classes certainly in the late Nineteenth, early Twentieth century. Drinks were slightly higher in cost here but this allowed for live music, singing, dancing, comedy, billiards tables, croupiers and many other forms of lively entertainment. Today there are many pubs that have survived this early tradition with a couple of examples of layout/furnishings seen to the left.


THE PUBLIC BAR: This area of the public house remained a working class room with simple decoration and furnishings. Timber floor boards or even sawdust were under foot that meant the many ‘accidents’ involving alcohol were easily cleared away and forgotten. A today seldom seen yet common of its time in the 19th century snob screen (seen to the right) provided a divide between the two areas, this meant that both a Master and his servant could drink in the same establishment without the embarrassment of mixing or being seen socialising together. Very often these two areas would have an ‘Off-Sales’ point dividing them in the middle that sold not only alcohol for home consumption but cigarettes too. With the opening of many supermarkets and small local cooperatives, the price of these off-sale products came in higher and subsequently cost more to run than if they closed them down and utilised the space by some other means: extending the bar usually.

THE COUNTRY PUB: This is, as one might imagine, slightly different in design and layout from the aforementioned Public Houses. Traditionally viewed as a meeting point and social gathering venue for the rural community, the single room would be where members of the local community would discuss and/or voice local current affairs. They often, as previously documented, opened their doors and spare rooms to travellers providing not only accommodation for the individual, but so too for their mode of transport, often horses.

In modern day occurrences many of these establishments have converted their appeal to those wishing to consume both food and beverages, and often to the wider community, not just the local residence.

BEER OR COURTYARD GARDENS:The following quote summarises perfectly what the components are that makes up this area of the pub should they be fortunate to accommodate such a space.

The term “beer garden” (Biergarten) has become a generic term for open-air establishments where beer is served. Many countries have such establishments. The characteristics of a traditional beer garden include trees (no sun umbrellas), wooden benches (no plastic garden chairs), gravel bed (no street pavement), and solid meals (no fast food).

The largest traditional beer garden in the world is the Hirschgarten in Munich, which seats 8,000″ – Wikipedia – Beer gardens. dec.2011

The traditional beer gardens originated in Germany and are very different in layout compared to those found in the UK, especially in the rural areas. The following link makes for interesting reading when looking into the history and layout of the Beer Garden, not only looking at the origins but internationally as well as through time. (

This research discusses the grid pattern by which both trees and seating are laid out to benefit the underground cellars, as well as the materials used within the space. Areas specifically designated for children so that the whole family of varying ages can enjoy the social scene are explained – all of which are elements relevant to the gardens at the Rose and Crown.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Writtle Identity

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Writtle is a large village of approximately 5500 residence with a history that dates back to 1086. There are a couple of different archetypal personalities that make up the village from the remains of King John’s Palace within the grounds of Writtle College itself, built in 1211 to the modern and contemporary residential developments built in recent years.

The area I am specifically interested in is the immediate curtilage of the Rose and Crown itself, specifically Writtle Green. Above is a small snap shot that showcases the very traditional buildings that make up this area.

Writtle green itself is a conservation area with many of the building listed as either Grade I or Grade II. A fair assessment of the area would suggest that the Rose and Crown pub, although Grade II listed does not do justice to the beautifully kept, neighbouring properties that look onto the Green.

Obvious characteristics to note include the materials of red brick, white painted brick or white painted render on the exterior of most of these buildings.  Windows are of the georgian style with most being timber framed. There are cast/wrought iron railings in any manor of design styles that encase small front garden spaces and well kept window boxes that dress the smaller houses that spill directly onto the street.

Writtle Green is a very traditional area of the village which seems well loved and well respected by its occupants. This  will take into account when looking at the design options of the Rose and Crown grounds.

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment

The Rose and Crown: Research – Restaurant Design and History

Having looked into Restaurant design and the theory behind it, there was one particular book that really spoke to me, Restaurant Design by Bethan Ryder, published in 2004 which although is nearly 10 years old now, has proven to me that there are some ideas that through their simplicity, just work, no matter when they were first documented.

Below are a number of statements from the book that I wish to use to form the foundations of my design and interpretation of the space because to me they fit the brief very comfortably both in terms of the historic content (of which The Rose and Crown fits well) and in terms of its modernist and certainly relevant by todays standards, thought process.

  1. “Since the grand banquets of Greek/Roman times, eating with others in public has been associated with entertainment and performing arts such as music and dance.” Pg 7.

This ties in very comfortably with the intentions of this particular public house, specifically the summer months sees the arrival of two major annual events that focus around ale, live bands and a long weekend involving DJ’s – modern day entertainment and performing arts at its best some may argue.

Tables for much more than just a couple sitting quietly enjoying each others company in the corner are set out across the entire location, there are tables and chairs laid out for as many as 8 which just proves larger parties are not only welcome, but a regular occurrence.

2.     “As space shrinks in the cities of the developed world and citizens have less private room to call their own, they are increasingly opting to dine out in public spaces. In our ‘life style’ obsessed times, these public arenas are where the modern urbanite performs his or her identity – where you eat or drink defines, to an extent, your social self.”

This statement has so much to say. Choosing one of these specialised ‘arenas’ to spend your hard earned money and free time is not down to pure coincidence. These venues have worked hard (most of the time) to create an identity that appeals to their audience. They use marketing tools to entice clients over the threshold with furniture, appealing colour pallets and cleverly placed trinkets that appeal, not to everyone, but to those that may feel familiar within such surroundings, an extension of ones personality just as one may express themselves through clothing or other material means.

Dining inside or out in such a comfortable, familiar environment allows those who lack the space within their own home to relax, whether it be in the nearby pub or restaurant, it allows one to escape without feeling too uncomfortable or unsettled in unfamiliar territory.

3.     “(Jean Anthelm) Brillat-Savarin says ‘ Hospitality became a chivalrous and gallant thing” as travellers increase and trade routes developed during mid 17th Century”

Bethany Ryder then goes on to state;

“In terms of design: these places were merely functional. Taverns offering a fixed price meal (table d’hôte) varied from single rooms to a property with multiple rooms complete with gardens, out houses and bowling greens.”

This makes me think of a couple of things;

1.The kind of person that was to been seen in these venues would have been one that wore pride and a sense of duty on their arm.

I would assume that these routes were lonesome and at times hostile so arriving at a location that appeared warm and welcoming with familiarities, food and companionship would be ideal, competition no doubt would have been rife.

2. Design needed to entice the gallant traveller through the simplicity of form and structure. Their stay would have been short as they passed through these places, yet needing to accommodate all their requirements the layout would have been simple and easy to navigate through.

To tie these points in with The Rose and Crown is not difficult. The history of Chelmsford goes back to the Middle Ages when in 1199 a charter from the King gave the right for the town to hold weekly markets. These markets had merchants and craftsmen attracting consumers from all over the country but especially London as the old Roman roads linking the city to the town had long since been established.

4.     “(Restaurant design is) A kind of zeitgeist shorthand that communicates the popular themes and preoccupations of the day.

 This is a great statement for guidance when designing this garden. It identifies that good design, layout and usage of these spaces should appeal directly to the current needs, wants and desires of the audience. These could vary from seasonal, annual or even spontaneous community inspired fashions and should form the foundation of designing a space whether it be for consumer or privately owned spaces.

5.     (Said of hotels but relevant across the board)

“Using colours, materials and shapes in ways that go beyond the ordinary, that hotel should be an innovative, dream inspiring space.”

“It is one of the main reasons – if not the only reason – by which people choose a place to stay, or how they distinguish one brand from another. We have travelled to escape the daily routines of our lives and experience new sensations.”

6.     “We are living in an era where consumers’ appetite for originality are increasing. People are after places that are intimate, comfortable, open and ultimately, places that encourage togetherness.”

Posted in Site: Concept and Meaning - Project Two | Leave a comment