The Bartlett


Sustainable Places: Place Inspired Architecture

22 March 2023, 1:00 pm–2:00 pm

TEXT: Sustainable Places: Place Inspired Architecture

Join this online panel discussion to explore how rural architecture, design and craft can be inspired by their natural environment.

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Alma Daskalaki

This online Sustainable Places event will explore how rural architecture, design and craft can be inspired by their natural environment and help to create a viable future for both humans and nature.  

Using the example of a small rural UK village called Flimwell, we will explore how architecture, design and sustainable crafts culture can connect places and communities with nature. 

About this event

In this Sustainable Places: Place Inspired Architecture event we will explore how architecture and community relate to their surrounding environment, and how design, making and craft can reinforce and enhance this relationship. We will delve into the UK’s East Sussex woodland to examine Flimwell, a small, historic Doomsday Book village set in the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and surrounded by a constellation of stunning villages and towns. The region is a patchwork of agriculture and woodlands with a historic making economy driven by iron production, clay and timber. 

We will explore how architecture, design, craft and making can play a binding role in establishing a viable future for both people and nature, with humans becoming a positive force within our natural environment. Using the example of Flimwell Park and the Woodland Enterprise Centre as an example, we will discuss what drives a genuine design and crafts culture where the products created are reflective of where they are created. How might these products be sustainably produced in a local and broader context, and can they enhance both the community and its natural environment?  

Recording and accessibility

The session will be recorded, and the recording and written transcript will be shared with attendees after the event.

We want to make our events accessible for everyone, and we encourage you to let us know if you have any accessibility requirements including:

  • Presentation slides in advance for screen readers
  • Live closed captions during the event
  • Live British Sign Language interpretation during the event
  • Any other requirements

Please contact Alma Daskalaki, Bartlett Faculty Events Officer at a.daskalaki@ucl.ac.uk with accessibility requirements. Please note we require two working days' notice for requests.

About the Speakers

Steve Johnson

Associate Professor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

Steve is a sole practitioner architect. His firm, The Architecture Ensemble, is based in central London where he also teaches at The Bartlett School of Architecture and, occasionally, The Architectural Association’s Hooke Park in Dorset. 

To date, Flimwell Park is by far the largest project completed by The Architecture Ensemble, and it carries the baggage of many years of utter fascination with timber and woodlands. 

More about Steve Johnson

Nick Gant

Co-Founder at Community21

Nick Gant is an award-winning designer, published author and researcher. He leads the Community21(.org) social and sustainable design research group based at the University of Brighton, UK. Community21’s research manifests within and through tangible objects and products, spaces and places and has helped over 50 companies, NGOs and governing bodies to engage with and develop their social and sustainability agendas.

More about Nick Gant

Andy Trotman

Designer at Timberwright

Andy Trotman is a specialist designer-maker in timber, applying creativity, structural design, material knowledge and craftsmanship to a diverse range of projects. He is a Chartered Structural Engineer and in 2004 established his own company Timberwright to combine these skills with a passion for working with wood as a primary material. He is focused on the holistic use of UK timber in construction and carries out woodland management and timber processing alongside projects. He is also a member of the judging panel for the annual Wood Awards, Buildings Category. 

More about Andy Trotman

Sal Wilson

Technical Environmental Design Tutor at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

Sal Wilson worked in architectural practice for 10 years in both London and New York before joining the environmental design team at Atelier Ten, where she gained greater depth in understanding sustainability in the built environment. She is currently a technical design tutor, with an emphasis on environmental design, at the Bartlett School of Architecture and the Architectural Association. She is also the co-founder of HEAL (Home Energy Action Lab), a Hackney-based community group focused on accelerating low carbon, fabric first domestic retrofit within the community. 

More about Sal Wilson