The Twentieth Century Society

Campaigning for outstanding buildings

Torilla, Hatfield

40 Buildings Saved

11. Torilla, Hatfield, Hertfordshire

Status: Listed Grade II*
Architect: F R S Yorke
Owners: Private home
Location: Wilkins Green Lane, Hatfield


A skilfully planned, reinforced concrete white cubic house, the first commission (1934-5) of FRS Yorke, a major figure in the introduction of the Modern Movement into Britain in the 1930s.


The house had been listed in 1983 and was subsequently de-listed in 1984 as a result of an appeal from the then owner (who had inherited it from his parents and hoped to replace it with additional houses).


The C20 Society registered a strong objection to the delisting as a dangerous precedent, but initially without success.  Since the house was extant, a re-listing application was successfully made in 1993, coinciding with the day of acquisition by a new owner who also intended demolition. Following a Public Inquiry, the new owner’s plea on grounds of human rights was rejected


A prospective buyer, the painter Alan Chalton, worked with architect John Winter to refurbish the building adding a beautifully curved studio and finding much of the original furniture.

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