Studio Bloc is an award winning architectural design practice based in Whixall, north Shropshire, working all over the UK.
The company was founded in 2014 by Philip Handley, who grew up in Whitchurch and attended Bishop Heber High School, Malpas.
After graduating from the University of Manchester with a BA Hons in Architecture, Philip then achieved a first class honours in his Masters in Architecture at the University of Liverpool.
Philip and his team managed to transform the Grade II listed building in Whixall, which was in a terrible condition, into a sleek and stylish new home, while keeping some of the original materials.
He said he is delighted to have won two awards at The Daily Telegraph Homebuilding & Renovating Awards, Best Conversion and Home of the Year, which celebrates the most outstanding project entered into competition.
“Each year these awards showcase the very best self build projects, providing inspiration for those hoping to build their own home,” he said.
“Studio Bloc are very proud to have been judged the best of the best. The awards are the ultimate ‘thank you’ to everyone who supported the project and worked on the house.”
Architect and judge, Darren Bray, said of the transformation: “This conversion and reimagining of a former blacksmith’s forge is an absolute triumph.
"There’s a wonderful forensic and sympathetic touch here, which sees layers of history unpacked while stitching in new contemporary elements with real skill and determination.
"Delivering this project for £85,000 is a masterclass in how to reinvent an ageing structure; it’s what we should all be doing in response to the climate change emergency.
“This type of project is not for the faint-hearted, and it has been handled with professionalism and nerves of steel.”