MD Alistair Haxton worked as an advertising and editorial illustrator in Soho for the likes of Saatchi & Saatchi before a passion for great buildings, and memories of his father and grandfather at work in their draughtsman’s office, led him to university and the architectural drawing board. He qualified in 1991, bringing to architecture his creative flair and a passion for finding ways of ensuring great design always works to enhance people’s lives.
Positions in a number of practices have given him a wealth of experience. Alistair has worked on London’s iconic O2 Arena, the regeneration of numerous schools across the Midlands and Lincolnshire – one in consultation with former Prime Minister Sir John Major – plus numerous specialised listed building projects ranging from barn conversions, restoring farmhouses, cottages and grand period properties.
He is also highly experienced in working with medical practices and with disability access, and has worked with legal trustees to create homes for their clients. His extensive work on housing projects includes imaginative and elegant residential extensions and conversions.
Converting of a Victorian brick industrial store in a highly popular residential Sheffield location into an uber-cool, contemporary open-plan two-storey home for a client in his 20s. An inner courtyard garden accessible from both levels floods the property with light. This highly complex scheme worked beautifully.
A mountain ski chalet. Firstly I must confess, I love skiing. But I would relish the challenge of creating a property which successfully contrasts the stunning exterior panorama with the comforting feel of a cosy bolt-hole, so necessary after an exhilarating day on the slopes.
Architectural Technicial Scott Wood gives HKA an invaluable practical insight into the world of construction.
Before joining us with an honours degree in architectural technology, his entire working life had been spent in the building trade.
He has skills and qualifications in a wide range of construction disciplines, having continually sought education throughout his 33-year career – NVQs in Bricklaying, Roofing and Cladding, a Sub-diploma in Construction in the Built Environment and a HNC with distinction in Construction In the Built Environment.
He gained the latter at Chesterfield College while running his own construction firm. But never one to rest on his laurels, Scott decided to push himself further and develop a long-held passion for architecture and design into a new career. He headed to Sheffield Hallam University, continuing to run his business through four challenging years of part-time study. He achieved his goal aged 52.
He has now handed management of his business to his son and is firmly focussed on his architectural career at HKA.
An HKA design which will create two stunning homes in a picturesque Derbyshire valley for one family. To take best advantage of the views to the rear, and to ensure we meet with planning authority approval, both homes will be semi-submerged into the ground to create a low front profile. I am really enjoying the complex design issues this entails.
I would love the challenge of building a certified passive house, which would truly showcase our innovative design ideas and our commitment to sustainability, low carbon footprint and low energy running costs.
Bobbie Risotto joined the practice for 12 months in his third year of an architectural technology degree in 2016 – and enjoyed it so much, he stayed.
Our office on Glumangate is now his ‘classroom’ four days a week; he attends Sheffield Hallam University on the fifth day.
Bobbie chose to complete his degree part-time on day-release from HKA after deciding he preferred ‘learning in the real world’.
By the time he graduates, he will have clocked up three years of work experience in our architectural practice. We feel his skills, understanding and confidence have grown immeasurably – and love helping him to shape his future.
Bobbie has Italian roots – the name is a dead giveaway! His father’s parents are from Calabria and Ischia in Southern Italy. However, career-wise he is following in the footsteps of his maternal grandfather, a Derbyshire draftsman. Chesterfield Bobbie set his cap at architecture in secondary school, studying for a BTec in Construction And The Built Environment. He continued those studies at Chesterfield College, and enrolled at Sheffield Hallam in 2014.
Creating an outdoor water sport centre south of Nottingham is a hugely exciting new challenge for us.
We are designing the park’s vital hub, the main building which will house a cafe, classrooms and changing rooms, plus access routes and parking, and are overseeing the landscape masterplan.
My own home. I would love to use the skills I’m acquiring in heritage architecture to convert a rundown old building into a place I feel a kick of pride for when I walk into it every day. Or maybe I find a piece of land with an amazing view and create from scratch a home that fits the landscape.
Peter Koyanderis a consummate architect with nearly 30 years’ experience.
He now specialises within the practice as a consultant in contentious town planning issues, preparing expert witness reports and disputes, boundaries and rights of way issues in both commercial and residential sectors.
Fairplay Centre in Chesterfield – a wonderful project from start to finish. The staff of this registered charity had the vision to commission a unique building with a nurturing environment for young people with disabilities. It was a joy to work with them – and it’s not often you get to design a building with a waterfall in the circulation space!
Whatever great schemes we are developing in the design office. I am always excited by the next project.