I have been working in Architecture almost since leaving school in the mid-8os.
I worked initially for Clive Jones and Associates where we specialised in Environmentally Conscious Architecture, a long time before it became fashionable. We worked on projects designing extensions and refurbishments to Cheshire Homes in Devon and South Wales and several Medical Centres as well as lots of bread and butter Barn Conversion jobs. We counted ourselves to be extremely lucky to have our office in a Victorian Summerhouse overlooking Lynmouth Bay, we froze in winter and boiled all summer but had some great times, often working late into the night making models of projects. We even had a model we built exhibited in The Royal Academy of Art in London. Clive’s enthusiasm for all things ‘Green’ gave me a good deal of experience in this area, we attended many seminars and site visits to view cutting edge projects in places like The Centre for Alternative Technology and it is something I take interest in to this day. I worked with Clive for 10 years before becoming self-employed when the practice moved to Bideford.
After a couple of years self-employment designing and working ‘on-the-tools’ on building projects I was asked to go and help Jonathan Rhind Architects ‘for a week or ten days’, or so Jonathan said when he called. I was there for nearly ten years! I worked with a great team at JRA where we specialised in Conservation work. I ran projects on large country houses, churches, and castles amongst others. This was very different work to that I had been used to and a steep learning curve. A lot of our work involved working on site with contractors to solve the problems that naturally arise whilst repairing complex old buildings, this gave me a great insight into the use of traditional materials, detailing and techniques. Whilst at JRA I was also on the design team for some very fast track modern restaurant and hotel projects, the nature of these projects meant that detailed design was done mostly on site as we went. We used a lot of high quality high value materials in these projects and a lot of purpose made items and I have retained some good contacts from this time. I left JRA to work in our family business and spend more time at home in 2003.
Since selling our family business I have been self-employed again and now work freelance for a number of Design and Property Companies throughout the South of England as well as on projects for private individuals throughout Exmoor and beyond.
Services: Measured Survey Work using laser and traditional methods. Architectural Drawings for Planning, Building Regulation, Listed Building, Environment Agency Applications etc and also publicity or management uses. Drawings are prepared using AutoCAD software or traditional pen and ink as is appropriate. Photography. Website design.
I have been using AutoCAD for years and have to finally reluctantly admit it is far better than drawing by hand for the vast majority of what I do. I do still do initial design work with paper and anything that comes to hand that will draw.
I have amassed a huge CAD database of traditional building details on computer file I can call on making design work on traditional buildings particularly efficient. Increasingly Planning Authorities are asking for a great deal of detailed information on Joinery and the like and to reproduce drawings of this complexity can take a lot of time, having this information easily to hand saves time and money for clients.
Contact me on 07532 264184 or email willbowden@ this website
Its my next job to try and update this page, I should get to it sometime in 2013.