Studio image about

Mole Architects is an award-winning architectural practice based in Cambridge, founded by Meredith Bowles in 1997. From The Black House in the Cambridgeshire Fens (featured in the V&A architecture gallery) to the Living Architecture collaboration on the Balancing Barn, the practice has been marked out by its distinctiveness, originality and personality. Mole makes buildings described by Elle Decoration as ‘not just green but gorgeous’, expressing a commitment to cutting-edge sustainability alongside a passion for colour, form and material quality. Mole’s ethos combines innovation and common sense, and celebrates individuality.

 

Recent commissions span a wide range of building types, from one-off houses, to apartments and yacht clubs, and clients include artists, developers, housing associations and universities.

Our houses have won the British Homes Awards, the RIBA Manser Medal, the Homebuilding & Renovating Best House Award, the Ideal Home of the Year, and the Architect's Journal Small Projects award. Mole has since been commissioned to design a wide range of buildings, from apartments to yacht clubs. Overseas, Mole worked on a new £80million ‘hillside resort’ in Taiwan, and in 2012 Mole were chosen by The University of Cambridge from 350 architects to be one of 10 firms to design Phase 1 of a £1 billion expansion in northwest Cambridge.

 

Mole’s commitment to ‘green building’ has been a constant throughout the life of the practice. Early low energy houses were designed from first principles in collaboration with environmental engineers, and have been used by the BRE, TRADA and others as exemplars. Mole has completed certified Passivhaus schemes (some of the earliest affordable housing to be built to this standard) and are working on one of the largest Code 5 housing schemes in the country.

 

All Mole’s buildings are the result of many hours of collaborative work.  Whatever the scale, all demonstrate an interest in the craft of making, and are uniquely tailored to their purpose. Each building is finely tuned, and brings pleasure to the daily rituals that define our lives.

“Their contextually sensitive materialist approach is not about pastiche ‘fitting in’ or slavish copying: echoing something of John Soane’s mantra that ‘we must be artists not copyists’.”

– Architecture Research Quarterly

People

MeredithBowlesCV

MEREDITH BOWLES

Principal Meredith Bowles trained as an architect at Sheffield University, The Royal College of Art and the Architectural Association in London. After working as an architect in New York, Taiwan and London, Meredith established Mole Architects in 1997. He was a member of the RIBA Awards Group 2012-2016, serving as Chair on the RIBA House of the Year Award, and is Chair of the Cambridge Design and Construction Awards. He is a vice-chair on the Cambridge Quality Panel, and co-Chair of the Suffolk Design Review Panel. Meredith has taught architecture at Sheffield University and The University of Cambridge, and served as an External Examiner to Sheffield Hallam University 2014-17. He regularly writes in the national press, and has appeared on BBC and Channel 4 programmes. He has regularly contributes to conferences to talk about architecture and urban design.

IanbramwellCV

Ian Bramwell

Ian is responsible for the effective running of the business, working closely with Meredith to ensure efficiency on all jobs. As well as being an experienced Project Architect with proven technical abilities, Ian is a talented strategic designer with excellent analytical design skills and heads up our housing development projects. Ian has overseen the Living Architecture collaborations and is currently working on houses in Devon, Dorset, Cambridgeshire and Suffolk. Ian has been an RIBA representative on the Cambridge City Council’s Design and Conservation panel and on the RIBA validation panel for Cambridge University, and he is also currently a professional studies advisor for Cambridge University. At weekends Ian can be found messing about on the water, running or cycling around Cambridge.

jimmysimpsoncv

Shubhanaga Simpson

  • MA (Cantab) MArch
  • Associate

Shubhanaga (previously Jimmy) has excellent experience running large scale projects and leads the delivery teams for our large projects. He is an experienced Project Architect, with over 15 years’ experience in the construction industry, working across a range of sectors and specialising in residential mixed-use projects. Shubhanaga is currently leading the team on the Marmalade Lane project on site, comprising 42 dwellings. He was previously Project Architect for the mixed-use Eddington project for the University of Cambridge, comprising 35 apartments, a healthcare facility and an office. Along with other management responsibilities, Shubhanaga also takes care of the office's Quality Management system which is based on the RIBA Chartered Practice and ISO 9001 systems. He is also a Part III mentor and enjoys supporting the younger members of staff training to be architects. Outside of work Shubhanaga paints, draws and teaches meditation and buddhism.

Alice Hamlin

Alice Hamlin

  • BA (Hons) MArch
  • Architect

Alice completed her BA and MArch degrees at Northumbria University, graduating with distinction and receiving a commendation in the RIBA Hadrian Medal awards 2016. Previously she gained experience working on larger scale projects at FaulknerBrowns Architects. Since joining Mole, Alice was instrumental in delivering the Marmalade Lane Cohousing project. She is currently the Project Architect for the mixed-use residential project in Wolverton comprising affordable housing, private sale and retail. Outside of work, she can usually be found sewing, learning jiu jitsu, or reading any book within reach.

HughcraftCV

Hugh Craft

  • BA (Hons) MArch
  • Architect

Hugh completed his postgraduate studies at the University of Cambridge having studied architecture at Newcastle University. During his studies he received the RIBA Hadrian's Award 2011 for his undergraduate design thesis titled ‘Mind The Gap’. His final thesis, an infrastructure for the English coastline, reflects his interests in vernacular design, craft and methods of construction. Working for practices in London and Cambridge Hugh has experience on a variety of projects of different scales. Joining Mole Architects in 2014 He has assisted with the design development, visualisation, detailing and contract administration of housing projects and one-off houses. He is currently part of the design team for the North West Cambridge and Design District projects. Outside of work Hugh is likely to be found pursuing his love of film and digital photography exploring the landscape around Cambridge.

Louise

Louise McGarrigle

BSc (Hons) MArch (Hons)
Part II Architectural Assistant
Louise completed her BSc and MArch in University College Dublin. She was awarded the overall student excellence prize for the American based Envision 2040 Greenworks Design Competition and was commended as a finalist by DoCoMoMo Ireland for her proposal on Central Bank. Since joining Mole, Louise has enjoyed working on a variety of projects. When not at work she enjoys rowing, yoga and hitting as many music gigs as she can.

Susie Newman

Susie Newman

  • BA (Hons)
  • Part II Architectural Assistant

Susie graduated with her architecture degree from Dublin Institute of Technology in 2015. Her final year thesis was exhibited in a series of venues in Dublin and across Ireland. She has enjoyed working in architectural practices in Holland, Switzerland & Ireland and was awarded joint third prize in the 2016 ICARC ideas competition for a house for David Bowie. Since joining the Mole team in 2017 Susie has been involved in a range of projects in the office from urban infill housing schemes to one off homes. Outside of office hours she can be found practicing aerial acrobatics, painting and exploring new places.

Gail Loftus

Gail Loftus

  • Office Manager

As Office Manager, Gail supports our Directors and Associates by organising everything needed for a smooth-running practice – from answering calls to coordinating the website and facilitating all administrative tasks needed for the effective and smooth running of the office.
As well as making sure the office is running effectively, Gail also has a strong background in design, with a degree in Interior Design and over 10 years industry experience, adding valuable experience to the office.
When Gail is not in the office, she can be found in her hometown of Bury St Edmunds usually running around in a park after her young daughter or getting creative with a paintbrush or camera, and meandering through art galleries.

Team photography: © Onur Pinar

“Mole Architects is one of the most critically acclaimed contemporary architecture practices working in Britain today.”

– themodernhouse.net

Awards

2019

RIBA National Award: Winner for Marmalade Lane
RIBA National Award: Winner for Lot1 Eddington
RIBA Neave Brown Award: Shortlisted for Lot1 Eddington
RIBA East Award: Winner Lot1 Eddington
RIBA East Award: Winner Marmalade Lane
RIBA SouthWest Award: Winner Secular Retreat
National Urban design Awards: Winner Marmalade Lane
Surface Design Awards: Winner Exterior Surface: Fijal House
Housing Design Awards: Winner for Marmalade Lane
Housing Design Awards: Winner Richard Feilden Award for Marmalade Lane
World Architecture News Awards: Shortlisted for Lot1 Eddington
Building Award: Shortlisted for Lot1 Eddington

2018

Daily Telegraph Homebuilding & Renovating Awards: Winner for Fijal House
The Sunday Times British Homes Awards: Shortlisted for Fijal House
Cambridge Design Awards: Winner of Small Building category: Sedgwick Street
Cambridge Design Awards: Commendation of Large Building category: Lot1 Eddington

2017

RIBA Stephen Lawrence Award: Winner for Houseboat
RIBA East Regional Award: Winner for Marsh Hill
RIBA London Regional Award: Winner for Walmer Yard
RIBA South west Regional Award: Winner for Houseboat
World Architecture Festival Small Works Prize: Shortlisted for Houseboat

2016

  • Suffolk Coastal District Council’s ‘Quality of Place’ Award: Winner for Marsh Hill

2015

  • RIBA East Sustainability Award: Winner for Stackyard
  • RIBA East Regional Award: Winner for Stackyard
  • RIBA House of the year: Longlist for Stackyard

2014

  • RIBA Awards: Shortlisted for Broadland Housing
  • RICS Awards: Shortlisted for Broadland Housing
  • Ideal Home Blue Ribbon Award, best one-off house: Winner for Stackyard
  • Housing Excellence Awards: Winner for Broadland Housing
  • Green Apple Awards: Silver Award for Broadland Housing
  • World Architecture Festival, Future Projects House: Shortlisted for Houseboat

2013

  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted for Hawthbush
  • RIBA South East Regional Awards: Shortlisted for Hawthbush

 

 

 

 

 

2012

  • RIBA Manser Medal: Shortlisted for the Dune House
  • RIBA National Award: Winner for the Dune House
  • The Wood Awards: Shortlisted for the Dune House
  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted for The Lanes
  • RIBA Spirit of Ingenuity Award: Winner for Madingley Road
  • RIBA Spirit of Ingenuity Award: Commendation for The Typographer’s House
  • RIBA East Sustainability Award: Winner for Madingley Road

 

2011

  • RIBA National Award: Winner for Balancing Barn
  • RIBA Manser Medal: Shortlisted for Balancing Barn
  • British Design Award: Winner for Balancing Barn
  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted for Wingate Way Studio
  • British Insurance Design of the Year Awards: Shortlisted for Balancing Barn

2010

  • The Sunday Times British Homes Awards: Winner for Cavendish Avenue
  • RIBA East Spirit of Ingenuity Award: Winner for Cavendish Avenue
  • Grand Designs Best New Build: Finalist for Cavendish Avenue

 

 

 

 

 

2009

  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted for Pepys Way Studio
  • RIBA Spirit of Ingenuity: Winner for Kings Road
  • Civic Trust Awards: Shortlisted for Cavendish Avenue
  • David Urwin Award: Winner for Cavendish Avenue
  • David Urwin Award: Winner for Architecture School

 

 

 

2008

  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Winner for Wabi Tea House
  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted for The Ramblers
  • RIBA Spirit of Ingenuity Awards: Shortlisted for the Architecture School

 

 

2007

  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Winner
  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted

2004

  • RIBA National Award: Winner for The Black House
  • RIBA Manser Medal: Winner for The Black House
  • Stephen Lawrence Award: Shortlisted for The Black House
  • Architects Journal First Building Award: Shortlisted for The Black House
  • Architects Journal Small Projects Award: Shortlisted for Toft Lane

“… Mole Architects are particularly interested in producing designs appropriate for their local context, combining traditional materials and techniques with a more contemporary attitude to design and building.”

– themodernhouse.net

Press

Catalogue

General Brochure

View General Catalogue

House Brochure

View House Catalogue 

Mole catalogue

View Works in progress catalogue 

Books

The Housing Design Handbook: Guide to good practice

THE HOUSING DESIGN HANDBOOK: GUIDE TO GOOD PRACTICE

David Levitt and Jo McCafferty
Routledge; 2 edition
2018

100 Projects UK CLT

100 Projects UK CLT

Andrew Waugh and Anthony Thistleton (of Waugh Thistleton Architects)
Softwood Lomber Board & Forestry Innovation Investment
2018

New design for old buildings

New design for old buildings

Roger Hunt and Iain Boyd
Riba Publishing
2017

The Modern Timber House in the UK

The Modern Timber House in the UK - New Paradigms and Technologies

Peter Wilson
Arcamedia Ltd
2017

Vernacular Design

Conteporary vernacular design

Claire Nash
RIBA Publishing
2016

Carpenter book

Modern sustainable residential desugn

William J. Carpenter
John Wiley & Sons
2009

Wood Architecture & Design

Wood Architecture & Design

Michael Galindo
Braun Publishing
2012

Colleges and Universities – Educational Spaces

Colleges and Universities - Educational Spaces

Sybille Kramer
Braun Publishing
2010

Masterpieces: Country House Architecture + Design

Masterpieces: Country House Architecture + Design

Michelle Gallindo
Braun Publishing
2011

The Sustainable Home: The Essential Guide to Eco-Building

The Sustainable Home: The Essential Guide to Eco-Building

Cathy Strongman
Merrel Publishers
2010

Grand Designs Handbook

Grand Designs Handbook

Kevin McCloud
Collins
2009

21st Century House

21st Century House

Jonathan Bell
Lawrence King
2006

Contemporary design in detail

Contemporary Design in Detail: Sustainable Environments

Yenna Chan
Rockport Publishers
2008

THE HOUSE BUILDERS BIBLE

The House Builders Bible 10

Mark Brinckley
Ovolo Books
2013

Moderne Giebelhauser

Moderne Giebelhauser- Traditionelle Form- innovatives Konzept

Andreas K. Vetter
Callway Georg
2006

Cement Fibre- Technology & Design

Cement Fibre- Technology & Design

Prof Jan R Krause
Birhauser GmbH
2006

Social Housing book

Social housing - Definitions and Design

Paul Karakusevic & Abigail Batchelor
RIBA Publishing
2017