It’s always great to receive good publicity and we’re thrilled that this piece of editorial has just been published in ‘The resident’, South London’s leading local magazine. This monthly publication is distributed straight to the doors of the city’s most discerning residents, offering a unique hit of luxurious lifestyle features, trends and tips, great buys, news and views plus the very latest on the people and places that make London the best city in the world.
Check out www.theresident.co.uk to see all the publications from around London, especially the ‘Living South’ issue which features our article. Here is what they had to say about Archistory…
Curious about your home’s past lives? Archistory brings the hidden histories of houses to light through drawings and narratives, finds Shannon Denny
Ever since leaving St Martin’s in 1990, Ben Taggart has worked as an architectural modelmaker and designer. Over the years he’s created countless models of period buildings where no original plans were available: ‘Consequently as part of a commission I would have to draw up a set of plans from which to make the model,’ he explains. ‘I learned the techniques of architectural drawing using pen and ink from my father, who was an interior designer.’ When he moved to a West Dulwich house built in 1897, Ben found a new outlet for his pen-and-ink skills. ‘The previous owner left a large envelope of paperwork for us. Hidden among the instructions for the washing machine were a pack of beautiful deeds and documents all on vellum paper, telling us who the first owners were and even some later occupants. I was hooked.’ He brought in the help of his friend and local historian Paul Murray to investigate the history of the house. Paul is the great-great grandson of Sir James Murray, editor of the first Oxford English Dictionary, so it’s fair to say he knows a thing or two about words. He began his work as a local historian, when he wrote a short history of the Grade II-listed Aged Pilgrims’ Resthome in Camberwell, an 1830 building in which he lives. ‘Gradually I amassed a small pile of documents and maps,’ Ben says of his own home. ‘And it struck me that it would be wonderful to have all of this information in one place and in a legible form, as I had struggled to read some of the Victorian handwriting. The answer was an architectural drawing of the house incorporating all the information I’d discovered. I wanted to not only record the history of the house but also its design.’ The outcome, a gorgeous execution of the home’s exterior alongside a narrative history, was too good to keep under wraps. So together Ben and Paul dovetailed their talents and launched Archistory, a unique business that creates bespoke records for homeowners wishing to display and celebrate their property’s provenance.