The Ryde Courtyard Houses 1964 (Randall & Parkes) Hatfield

These houses differ substantially to those of Genesta, Willow Road and Lamble Street, but shares the idea of a terrace with a parking bay in front. This project is more important for its typology than its entry sequence. Nevertheless there is some care in the arrival sequence in its accommodation of the car. It does this better than practically every other suburban estate built in Britain. The garage frames a narrow path leading to the front door while the landscaping (especially in its current mature state) effectively screens both house and automobile. Although designed to be approached primarily by car and its front elevation dominated by the garage there is a thoughtful sequence before reaching the front door. Stepping out of the car one moves from one open space to a diagonally placed courtyard leading to the front door. The footpath is straight but the spatial modulation both separates the space of the car and creates a distinct arrival space before entering. The design does not allow for the car to dominate the entry sequence despite the dependency on vehicular access. The spatial sequence within the house continues the diagonal sequencing of spaces making for a  fluid relationship between exterior and interior organisation.


  • Road (city) ⇒ park ⇒ path in first court (threshold) ⇒ second court (threshold) ⇒ door (boundary)

Unit Identity

  • Strong


Digimap Ryde Courtyard

  • All images from except:
  • Topmost overview and plans from The Architects Journal.
  • Axonometric drawing source unknown.
  • Map courtesy of OS Digimap.

See also:


Previous Entry 24. Isokon Building/Lawn Road Flats

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