Old Church (formally Annaly House), Balham
A grade-II listed Victorian Church in Wandsworth was converted into a hostel and health centre for deaf young adults. There is a short-stay hospital ward for those with mental and/or physical illness related to their deafness, and long-term hostel rooms for those who will benefit from residential care in the community. The effective combination of functions was pioneering, and has filled an important gap in the provision of help to the deaf.

Four floors of accommodation have been inserted into the church , with the larger rooms (art workshop, club and dining rooms) located on the ground floor. On the upper floors are bed-sitting rooms, individual ward rooms, offices, laboratories, clinical consulting and therapy rooms.

The architectural design was carried out with great care to ensure that an environment was created which would make conversations in sign language and the use of the building by the visually impaired as easy as possible.

The need for individual privacy had to be balanced with the need for care and supervision.

Natural materials were used wherever possible, not only because they are durable and easy to maintain but
also for the textural pleasure they afford. The building is serviced with a range of audio, safety and alarm systems.

The architects worked on the brief, achieved Planning and Listed building consents and provided full architectural services to contract completion.
project:Old Church (formally Annaly House)
location:Balham , London
client:Sign Health/sw London St Georges NHS Mental Health Trust
dates:1989-1997
cost:£2million
area:1,500sqm