London Studio

The Practice

Adam Richards Architects is an award-winning architectural practice founded in 2000. Based in London and Sussex, ARA has developed a reputation for a wide range of arts, cultural, heritage, education and residential projects.

From its inception, ARA’s approach has been to remodel the deeper cultural themes within its projects into highly original critical, spatial, social and structural propositions. Ditchling Museum of Art + Craft, which reopened in 2013 to widespread acclaim and was chosen by The Sunday Times as the architectural highlight of the year illustrates the transformational impact of our work. As with Ditchling often our clients have unique objects and unusual sites. We work collaboratively with them to find inspiring, inventive and affordable ways of making their environment better. Many of our projects are in historic settings, and we have a talent for understanding what makes such places special – and complementing and enhancing them through the projects we design.

Adam Richards Architects is committed to pursuing sustainable design solutions: we start each project with an audit of the sustainable options, and we design projects which demand less energy in their construction and use, deploying materials which required less energy to make.

We believe that architecture is an art and a craft, and that buildings should be of their time, but rooted in their place. We design buildings for the long term, with an emphasis on quality. Our projects often have a strong narrative basis: we tell stories in our projects by drawing on a knowledge of social and cultural history, myth and geographic and symbolic understanding. Our buildings are meaningful, and this is understood at an emotional level by the people that experience them.

The buildings we craft are buildings that people feel at home and happy in. Our clients tell us that we have added more value than they could have imagined at the start of the commission.

"Throughout the process we felt that ARA understood us not only as an institution, but also took considerable time in understanding the Collection, the Museum’s site as well as the sensitive village setting. Adam has a level of cultural understanding that enables him to propose a creative response to a Collection that makes it newly relevant to audiences, in inspiring spaces that simply ‘feel right’. We greatly enjoyed the briefing and attention to detail in the design process, and were so pleased with the architectural design that we asked ARA to work with us on the design of the flexible exhibition space too.” Hilary Williams, Director of Ditchling Museum during capital project

ARA has won many awards, including international recognition for adaptive re-use and residential design. We have twice won RIBA South East Building of the Year, and twice been nominated for the European Union Mies van der Rohe architecture prize.

Adam Richards

Adam Richards BA(Hons) BSc(Hons) DipArch(Cantab) RIBA is a British architect whose work has encompassed architecture, interior design, furniture and landscape design.

Adam studied architecture at Cambridge University under Peter Carl and Dalibor Vesely, after a degree in international relations and politics. He worked in Dublin and London for Niall McLaughlin, MacCormac Jamieson Prichard and O’Donnell & Tuomey on projects ranging from national museums to private houses, before establishing Adam Richards Architects in 2000.

Adam has taught architecture at Cambridge University and Kingston University, and has been a guest critic at a range of architecture schools. Adam has been a judge for a number of architectural awards and chaired the jury for the RIBA South East Awards 2022. He is a member of the South Downs National Park Design Review Panel.

Sussex Studio


  • 2021

  • 2020

    • Nithurst Farm

      • Wallpaper* Magazine Worldwide Best New House 2020 — Winner

    • Walmer Castle

      • Civic Trust Award — Regional finalist

  • 2019

    • Nithurst Farm

      • Royal Institute of British Architects South East Building of the Year — Winner

      • Royal Institute of British Architects South East Award — Winner

      • Royal Institute of British Architects National Award — Winner

      • Royal Institute of British Architects, House of the Year — Shortlisted

      • Architects Journal, House of the Year, Manser Medal — Shortlisted

      • South Downs National Park Awards, Innovation Award — Winner



Joe Chilvers, Tasnim Eshraqi, Nat Shields, Kate Johnstone, Alex Watt, Rebecca Iuliano, Farlie Reynolds, Joe Mackey, Irem Dockmeci, Giles Hampton, Michael Vale, Lucinda Eccles, Mike McCarthy, David Rozwadowski, Johnny Marion, Anna Pemberton, Jonathan Taylor, Sam Dawkins, Lauren Scully, Caoilinn McConville, Matthew Hill, Suzanne May, Tom Westwood, Geraldine Dening, Agnieszka Glowacka