Are you ready to renovate your home?

Join us at Somerset Homebuilding & Renovation Show

If you are ready to renovate your home, you probably have a lot of ideas swirling around. Our experience is that a day at a home show can help focus your efforts. After all, scouring the internet for ideas can easily become overwhelming!

Richard Zinzan and Teresa Telander will be participating in the Somerset Homebuilding & Renovation Show on 17 and 18 November. The show is held at the Bath and West Showgrounds just south of Shepton Mallet, in Somerset.

The Homebuilding and Renovating Show is a wonderful place to meet experts, seek advice, see products and be inspired, all under one roof. Whether you are considering renovating or building a new home, this show is the place to gather the information you need.

Interested in going? Register here for two free tickets!

For further information:

We hope to see you there.

RichardAre you ready to renovate your home?

Planning Application Fee Increase

20% Fee Increase

We wanted to make you aware of some legislative changes that will be coming into effect on 17th January  2018 that could affect your project.

On the 20th December, new legislation was passed to increase the planning application fee by 20% and the changes will come into effect on 17th January  2018. This price hike will affect all planning applications and permitted development certificate of lawfulness.

Planning applications will increase from £172 to £206

Lawful development certificate will increase from £80 – £96

If you are in a position to move forward with a planning application or would like to discuss a project and require ARCH-angels assistance please do not hesitate to contact us.

For further reading please visit the .Gov site on the legislative changes.


Contact us

Architects hand planning sketch
RichardPlanning Application Fee Increase

Nicola Thomas retires from the business

Big changes for 2018 – Nicola Thomas retires from the business.

ARCH-angels Architects, founded by Nicola Thomas and Richard Zinzan in 2009, is passionately committed to providing cost-effective, creative, low energy buildings. We work closely with clients to enhance their space and craft beautiful buildings that are in harmony with their environment. Our aim is to understand the client’s dreams and to meet their individual requirements throughout the natural building process, so together we can produce people’s own grand design.

Now into our eighth successful year and steaming ahead strong, we say goodbye to one of our beloved founders, Nicola Thomas, as she retires from the business after an inspirational 30-year career in the architectural industry. Her parting words being “developing the two businesses (ARCH-angels Architects and ZST architects) has provided me with a fantastic opportunity to meet and work with a vast range of like-minded people and friends”. No better words could show the strength of bonds that we cherish within our team and the many people we work with. ARCH-angels continues to operate as a highly successful residential architectural business and going forward under Richard Zinzan’s leadership and a talented team, we are sure to continue to develop and achieve great things.


RichardNicola Thomas retires from the business

Awarded Planning Permission in Brighton

ARCH angels Architects have just been awarded another planning permission in Brighton! This feels like a great victory as the client came to us following two failed planning applications and a dismissed planning appeal. We succeeded in coming up with a scheme that gives the couple the spaces they wanted while still satisfying the planners with a combination of a planning application and additional future development to be carried out in accordance with permitted development legislation.

As the architects we proposed a generous open plan living space on the ground floor with large sliding doors that make the most of the sea views their position offers. The change in levels of the site meant that the property is perfect for a basement development too, which allows direct access to the garden from additional living spaces. Upstairs, rearrangement of the floor plan provides space for an extra bathroom and creates the opportunity to access the loft for a loft conversation under permitted development.

Need an architect? Contact us to discuss further.



RichardAwarded Planning Permission in Brighton

New Low Energy Home

A new low energy home is on its way!

Construction works for a private new low energy home has started with the use of sustainable materials throughout. The design has taken full advantage of the plots uninterrupted views across fields and beautiful countryside. Foundations have been built and the slab is poured. We love going on the site visits and collecting wild blackberries in our hard hats!

What are the benefits of building your own home?

It is a great opportunity to create a home that perfectly suits your lifestyle instead of fitting your family into a developer built ‘off the shelf’ home.

Whilst developer houses are far from bad homes, as they have to meet all of the building regulations, they aren’t necessarily going to bring inspiration into your home life, nor suit all of your needs. When you choose to self-build, you are able to take control of your home project, in that you can choose who designs it, who builds it, and what needs your home will meet. You may want a home that is low energy, able to accommodate a growing family, or you may be approaching retirement and want a home that can support you.

What’s more, is that self-building works out to be more economical than purchasing the ready-made equivalent. This is because there are no VAT charges in labor costs, or building material costs when you are building a home from scratch.

You may be thinking, well that all sounds good but I don’t have the manual skills to build a home. Well in actuality most self-builders choose to take on the role of project manager and hire an architect to help with the design, and a contractor to take care of the skilled work. People from all walks of life can work towards building their dream home.

New build foundations
RichardNew Low Energy Home

We Love Design

“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”

The quote from the late Steve jobs proves that design isn’t just a tactile or aesthetic thing, but actually functional.

Here at ARCH-angels Architects, we love the design and we love the interiors! Check out some of our residential interior design sketch schemes, where functionality is at the heart of the design.

living room sketch ideas
RichardWe Love Design

Read about how an architect adds value

In 2014 ARCH-angels Architects were appointed to design a single storey side return extension to the whole depth of the existing kitchen. The client wished to have an open plan kitchen/dining space with a seamless access to the garden via sliding doors. One of the considerations was the connection to the existing reception room and the new space.

The mid terrace Victorian property is located on Grantham Road within the constraints of Preston Park Conservation Area. Due to its location planning permission was needed. This is to ensure the impact of the proposed development has minimal effect on the appearance and character of the building and on the setting of the Preston Park Conservation Area.

The extension aligned with the rear wall of the existing property so the side return infilled the existing open space between the side elevation and the shared boundary with the neighbour.

Design issues

The principal design consideration was maintaining the flow into the extended kitchen space from the hallway and also the rear reception room. In these extension projects, the rear reception room can become dark and become a corridor between spaces, losing its integrity. We avoided this by changing the existing window into this room into a door and retaining the access into the new enlarged space from the hallway. The room was to be a child’s play room and had plenty of natural light from the new roof windows of the new extension.

On site

The main site issues came from there being no access to the ‘site’ from the road. Everything had to be taken through the house including the large steel beam(s) supporting the existing side wall of the house. The builder suggested using a crane to take the steel beam over the roof of the house and into position, but in the end the beam was ‘spliced’ (divided) into three sections which were easier to carry and could be taken through the house. The other tricky element to the build was the new wall which had to be built on the shared party line between the client’s house and their neighbour. This was initially built in the wrong place due to difficult site conditions and the client asked for it to be moved but reluctantly settled for compensation from the builder.


The result is a calm bright space that the clients love and suits their lifestyle. They have achieved a good quality space with lovely materials such as the flooring and thin frames on the doors which bring the garden into the room. Another success was the addition of a small downstairs WC under the stairs which is functional and surprisingly spacious.


Nicola was a pleasure to work with, very patient with my demands and always offering great advice on aspects that neither us nor the builder had picked up on. Without a doubt the use of an architect caused the project to be more successful than it would have been otherwise, our subsequent viewings of similar projects by neighbours and friends completed without an

RichardRead about how an architect adds value

Tea with an ARCH-angel Architect

During Artists Open Houses festival we will be running our ‘Tea with an Architect’ event. We invite you to come and discuss how to create your dream home with the ARCH-angels team. Consultation is by donation in support of “Brighton Voices in Exile” a local charity that helps refugees who have no access to funding.

Book your hour slot and come along to Brighton and Hove’s Progressive Synagogue with ideas!

Running every Sunday between 11am and 3pm during the AOH Festival in May. Book at: 

Hurry as spaces are limited!
Tea with an Architect Final

RichardTea with an ARCH-angel Architect

Refurbishment of a Brighton home

A Sustainable & Contemporary Refurbishment


The Brief

This internal renovation was needed after this end of terrace house in Brighton had been subject to previous unsuccessful extension works. At ground floor a former rear extension had turned the rooms dark and disconnected. The owners wanted to create an open plan living/kitchen/dining space with a seamless transition into the garden. The first-floor accommodation needed to be rearranged to provide an en-suite shower room to the front bedroom and reposition the existing family bathroom. The loft had also been converted with an access staircase in the centre, dividing the room inconveniently through the middle. The owners wanted to extend this space and create a master bedroom suite with roof lights to the front and dormers to the rear. The brief was to rearrange the layout of the house, to maximise its useable space and light.

The Detail

ARCH-angels Architects needed to rearrange the layout of the house, to maximise its useable space and light. At ground floor, they enlarged existing openings between rooms and added roof lights, transforming the space into a dual aspect living/kitchen/dining room, flooded with natural light. A new entrance foyer and shower room were also added at ground floor level. At first floor the staircase to the loft was re-positioned over the existing staircase and a new dormer extension built to create a new spacious master bedroom. This was carried out under Permitted Development to enable to works to be on site sooner – important for the client as they were keen to carry out the works whilst they had funds to do so. The en-suite bathroom layout makes the most of the space under the pitched roof and addition of roof-lights adapts a space that otherwise would be unusable.

To ensure the build was sustainable ARCH-angels used low maintenance and durable materials throughout the build. Ensuring high levels of natural insulation were used they could be sure the fabric of the property would retain heat and allow natural ventilation. The architects researched and specified energy efficient light fittings and lamps, used environmentally friendly paints throughout and fitted low flush toilets in the en-suite and family bathroom.

There was an excellent working relationship between client and architect, with an emphasis on collaborative working. The clients were very much hands on and responsive when asked about changes or confirmation of materials and finishes etc.

The attention to detail in this project transformed a tired house lacking in flow to a unique home full of space and light. The project was delivered on time and on budget to a very happy client. The finished house is light, warm and spacious which allows the owners to experience seamless open plan living in this wonderful remodel of a family home.


RichardRefurbishment of a Brighton home

Award Winning Design Eco House

Eco House of the Future – Award Winning Design

We are happy to announce our Paragraph 55 Eco House of the future has won Paper Landscape award for unbuilt projects in the prestigious Society of Garden Designers Awards 2016. 

Landscape Designer, Dan Lobb worked with ARCH-angels Architects on this futuristic Eco Home – A scheme 6 years in the making and conceived of by ARCH-angels Architects as a blueprint for the ‘country house of the future’, was granted planning permission on appeal by the Planning Inspectorate.

Judging the design of the cutting edge eco home as ‘Architecturally outstanding’, Inspector L Gibbons has granted permission in accordance with Paragraph 55 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

Submitted for the award by Landscape Designer Dan Lobb Design MSGD who worked closely with ARCH-angels to blend the landscape and architecture seamlessly.

Read more about ‘Wishanger’  the architectural design Eco House

What the judges say:

“A design that seamlessly blends the landscape with the architecture in a sensitive very beautiful way.  An extremely accomplished piece of work that shows great sensitivity to the landscape.”

Wishanger estate CGI Designed by Arch angels architects Wishanger estate CGI Designed by Arch angels architects

RichardAward Winning Design Eco House