Bedford Park, in Chiswick, West London, is an area of particular architectural interest as it is known as the First Garden Suburb with houses originally built for the artistic middle classes, at the end of the 19th Century, in a style known as Queen Anne revival. The houses take their inspiration from the Aesthetic Movement of the 1870’s when there was a reaction against High Victorian vulgarity. The estate was developed by a cloth merchant, Jonathan T Carr, who also speculated in property. Jonathan Carr bought the site, comprising 24 acres, and commissioned various architects to design the houses. Carr’s first choice of architect was E W Godwin who was involved with the Aesthetic Movement but, after his resignation, R Norman Shaw was appointed as Estate Architect and he provided a series of practical, picturesquely varied and inventive designs in the Queen Anne revival manner. When Shaw resigned in 1879, he recommended E J May to continue as the Estate Architect. Alice Poole lives in Bedford Park and Alice Poole Architects have been based in Bedford Park since 1995. Since 1986 Alice Poole Architects have worked on over 100 Bedford Park properties and these are shown, shaded in purple, on the map of Bedford Park.
Alice Poole has worked on listed and period buildings for over 30 years. Listed Buildings and properties in Conservation Areas are rightly subject to stringent planning rules and restrictions. Although Alice Poole strongly believes that the buildings should be preserved for future generations, she also feels that these houses are dwellings, and not museums, and consequently they need to be able to be adapted to suit the needs of modern families, and this can usually be achieved without compromising the architecture of the house. Bedford Park is divided into two London Boroughs, Hounslow and Ealing, and unfortunately planning policy and decisions are not always consistent. Alice Poole Architects are prepared to challenge planning decisions and have won all appeals submitted since 2011 for palisade fences, rooflights to the side and rear of main roof slopes, dormer extensions to the main roof, side and rear extensions.