Will Beesley


In this project I designed a sustainable and affordable housing scheme in Heeley, a suburb in south Sheffield. The scheme consists of 14 dwellings, 2 work units and a community hub and is aimed at a mixture of people. My site was located in the centre of Heeley, behind the high street and next to a public green space. The main ideas behind the design were to maximise on passive effects like solar gain and natural ventilation by having dual aspect, open plan living spaces with large south facing glazing that opened into outside spaces. My ideas resulted in a public thoroughfare through the site leading on to the green space and a second more private street which has shared courtyard spaces and community vegetable gardens. The main building material used is hempcrete, a carbon neutral and self insulating material, which is finished with lime render, timber is used in a trellis like structure which plants grow up, and that wraps around the buildings and used to create private exterior spaces. 




This project involved the design of a community theatre in Darnall, a suburb of east Sheffield. Darnall is a place that once had a thriving community, but since the closing of the steel works, the community has fallen apart into segregated groups, empasised by increased immigration into the area. With my theatre I wanted to try and fix this by creating public space, a cafe that could be used throughout the day as a meeting place and performances put on by and for the community. By cantilevering I have created shelter off the street, which leads in to a cafe, spanning two floors, with large glazing to make activity visible from the street, whilst illuminating it at night. There is an underground performance space as well as a more flexible exterior space which can also be used for performances as well as other activities.      



The brief was to design a foraging centre in Gleadless Valley, which is an area to the south of Sheffield. My site was located in a large green space consisting of woodland and meadows, surrounded by housing estates and large residential tower blocks. The main ideas from foraging that inspired my design was its seasonal and simplistic nature. My design consists of two structures, the main building lies on a slope and within trees which contains most of the facilities and can be used throughout the year – with windows framing views back to the community. The second part of the design is two corten steel boxes that lie in the middle of an open space and for lots of the year remain unused, but in the warmer parts of the year can be transformed into a sheltered teaching and food preparation space by the addition of a canopy.