Buttress has a long-held belief that architecture is as much about people as buildings, and that buildings should be shaped by their surroundings, their role and the people who’ll use them.

This runs as a golden thread through our approach to buildings that are emblematic of people's faith, and where they choose to meet and worship.

the interior of liverpool anglican cathedral

Ecclesiastical buildings in particular are intrinsic to the fabric of communities the length and breadth of the UK, many are listed, and many still retain their original use. Those that do, adapt and change over time, sometimes slowly, sometimes radically, but when done successfully they remain constantly and recognisably of their place and community.

Buttress work with buildings of varying scale and communities of all faiths. Our portfolio of projects includes cathedrals, churches, synagogues, chapels of rest and cemeteries with works ranging from conservation and repair to reordering, to adaptation and new design interventions. 

a view of the dean's eye rose window at Lincoln Cathedral
looking down the aisle of a church through a decorative wooden screen

Conservation and repair

Many of the buildings we work with are listed and our approach to their management and care is directed by their significance. Maintaining the fabric may include stone and roof repair (for example) to small areas of concern or a larger project may be required to safeguard the condition and significantly improve building maintenance. Where we can, we employ new technologies and knowledge in our design approach, facilitating improved detailing and avoiding issues from reoccurring. We consider environmental performance on all projects and promote opportunities to improve building performance and reduce carbon footprints. 

Where conservation is required to significant fabric and detail we will develop and agree a conservation philosophy and designs appropriate to support and enhance that significance.

Lincoln cathedral seen across the rooftops of the town

Access and adaptation

When historic places do not meet modern access standards we must look for ways in which to address this whilst working within the context and significance of their heritage. 

We recognise that ecclesiastical buildings by their very nature are intrinsically linked to the community. They contain generations of memories and can be representative of an area’s cultural, social, and religious heritage. We work with our clients and their communities to find ways in which to promote access to this heritage and retain these precious and beautiful buildings in active and beneficial use. When working with faith buildings, we treat them with sensitivity – combining respect for the past with thoughtfully designed solutions to safeguard these important buildings for the future.  

a carved dark wood screen in lincoln cathedral
a stone floor detail

New interventions

Our new designs might stand alone or add to and adapt existing places of worship. All are bespoke approaches created with sensitivity and clarity. We will add contemporary and sophisticated new designs to existing places that complement and celebrate what is special about them in the first place.

a model of a church to help design new layouts
Meet our team

Projects (9)