“Elsewhere, at podium level flats or small maisonettes are planned. In most cases, these have a dual aspect, but a few of the dwellings have only a single outlook in cases where garages are planned behind them.”
Chamberlin, Powell & Bon, Architects “Barbican Redevelopment” April 1959
The front cover of the City’s letting brochure for Brandon Mews when the estate was built
November 1969. Brandon Mews was part of Phase III of the City’s building programme for the Barbican site. The contractor was John Laing Construction Limited.
Brandon Mews runs roughly from Speed House to Andrewes House. It forms the east side of Speed Gardens and then goes behind the waterfall and the southern end of the lake. At podium level it is parallel with Willoughby House on the far side of the highwalk.
Brandon Mews is a small terrace of two-storey homes, with a brown perspex structure on top, which was apparently added in the 1980s. Close up, you can see regular pitched roofs sticking up into this rounded perspex structure. It is otherwise quite empty, which is a pity. It would make a very pleasant conservatory.
Houses in Brandon Mews are west-facing and have views either directly over the lake behind the waterfall, or over Speed Garden, although they don’t have direct access.
There are 26 houses (numbered 1 – 26). (The Barbican Estate Office classify these dwellings as flats.) The inhabitants of Brandon Mews live below podium level and both their living rooms and their bedrooms face west towards the lake. Those nearest Speed House (the north part of the mews) overlook the delightful Speed Garden. Those nearest Andrewes House (the south part of the mews) overlook the ornamental waterfall from which water cascades down in front of Brandon Mews. The windows facing onto the lake are dramatic and each one seems to go right up the building, with window boxes in the middle and the distinctively Barbican “U” shape at the bottom. Strange metal rungs go up the wall between the windows, but I don’t think burglars would risk valuable trainers by wading the lake to get to them.
There are entrance doors down from podium level on Willoughby Highwalk, each serving two houses. There’s no direct access from the lakeside or from Speed Gardens to Brandon Mews.
Car parking spaces are available for each house near their rear entrance doors.
I am not aware of any stores outside the houses themselves.
List description of this building issued by the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (as it then was) in 2001.
“Block VIIB: 1-26 Brandon Mews, including water shute into the lake. Low mews block clad in glazed engineering brick set forward of Willoughby House by the east end of the lake. Two- storey mews houses, with internal bathrooms and staircases served by angled rooflights, covered over in the 1980s by round-arched brown perspex glazing. Houses accessed in groups of four or five via walkways off the public podium; a further walkway extends out into the lake, via staircase to a podium in the lake containing planting and a water shute which recycles and aerates the water in the lake.”