Sunday, December 15, 2013
Bishop's Stortford, Hertfordshire
Round we go
Sometimes the way a building turns a corner can be the best thing about it. I remember in a past post describing a particularly noticeable corner tower on a building in London – a 1930s version of many such markings of the junction between one street and another. This house in Bishop's Stortford is almost the opposite, small where the other building was grand and statement-making. Presumably there was a triangular site, where two roads, Basbow Lane and King Street, met at an acute angle. The builder (probably in the early-19th century) made full use of the plot, creating a triangular building with this beautiful curve at the junction. The bricklayer obliged with some careful brickwork.
Even if the house is only about six feet wide at the apex, it does the two things it should – makes full use of the available land and turns the corner gracefully. Steps, bricks, and trees make an interesting bit of urban scenery too, rendering a small building dramatic and turning a change of level into an architectural surprise. Modest? Yes. Unregarded? Probably. But sometimes, in townscape as in life, it's the small things that matter.