NLA announce ‘Don’t Move, Improve!’ shortlist of London’s best home extensions 2017

A kitchen on wheels, a sunken garden bath and a £25k extension all feature on New London Architecture’s ‘Don’t Move, Improve!’ 2017 shortlist. The annual competition, which this year received a record number of entries, showcases London’s best extensions and home improvement projects that demonstrate exceptional innovation in the creation of new living spaces for Londoners. ‘Don’t Move, Improve!’ was recently recognised by Dezeen’s inaugural Hot List as one of the world’s most popular design awards programmes.

Winners will be chosen from the 24 shortlisted projects and announced at an awards ceremony on 26 January 2017. This year’s shortlist was selected from a longlist of 120 projects featuring a huge range of responses demonstrating how homeowners can extend above, below and through their buildings or reconfigure existing layouts to optimise or create space. Entries reflect an eclectic mix of building types from across the capital, from small flats in 1960s housing blocks and Victorian terraces to Edwardian semis and post-war detached homes. The shortlist comprises schemes by practices Denizen Works, Kirkwood McCarthy, nimtim architects, Selencky///Parsons and R2 Studio Architects.

A range of economic factors have meant that home owners in the city are increasingly choosing to renovate, refurbish or extend their homes rather than sell. House prices have increased in London by more than 10% in 2016, with recent stamp duty rises and continuing economic uncertainty following the UK’s decision to leave the EU all impacting on people’s decisions to invest in their properties.

The competition’s esteemed jury comprises industry leaders, experts and journalists from London’s built environment, including Carl Turner of Carl Turner Architects, Cany Ash of Ash Sakula, Russ Edwards of Pocket, Jo McCafferty of Levitt Bernstein, Amy Frearson of Dezeen and Philippa Stockley of the London Evening Standard.

The competition is organised in association with Dezeen, RIBA London and and is now in its seventh year, with past winners including Carl Turner Architects, Platform 5 Architects and Ben Adams Architects. Last year the overall winner was ‘House of Trace’, a two storey addition to a Victorian home in Lewisham by Tsuruta Architects which went on to receive a national RIBA prize.

Peter Murray, Chairman of New London Architecture and Chair of the judging panel said: “As London continues to grow we need to make the best use of land in the capital. Home extensions provide an increase in accommodation that is sympathetic to the surrounding neighbourhood, improve the quality of space of older houses and increase their energy performance.”
A free exhibition of all the longlisted projects will run from 27 January to 28 April at NLA’s galleries in The Building Centre, WC1.

A ‘Don’t Move, Improve!’ open day, held in the NLA Galleries at The Building Centre in Bloomsbury on Saturday 25 February, will offer free consultations, advice and inspiration to Londoners looking to extend their homes, and will open for bookings in early January. The series will continue with three further open days enabling homeowners to get inspiration right through the year.

In addition to the competition, New London Architecture has partnered with to create the Don’t Move Improve – Shop the Look website, which launches today. The website enables anyone inspired by the Don’t Move Improve projects to discover and buy the furniture and lighting featured in each home, connecting to the enormous catalogue products listed on

Shop the Look features a number of shortlisted entries and will be expanded to include the other featured projects in the competition ahead of the exhibition opening in January. Visitors to the website can browse all images from the shortlist by project or by room. By hovering over a piece of furniture, visitors can see the brand and product information and click through to find out more and buy from the brand.

The shortlisted projects are: