Consultancy, Public Engagement, Research Impact, Exhibition

Places are defined by the people who live within them. As individuals and communities, deep significance is attached to familiar places, and complex relationships can develop between the residents and the place that they inhabit. This quality is present in the nature of the buildings and the streets, It is often generated by the ordinary actions of local people, many of who believe that their identity is essentially tied to the place that they occupy. This local distinctiveness is characterized by the activities that occur within the specific environment. Thus significant markers are formed, in both the present and in the past, which will allow 
a society to relate to a particular environment. Events that hold value in a community are often manifested in physical form, and therefore allow a population to trace back meanings and connections with their past. This organisation of the past seems to stimulate social cohesion and the feeling of being part of a community, and so, physical links with the past are often important elements within the cohesion of a community.

The Continuity in Architecture Atelier at the Manchester School of Architecture has evolved a theoretical position developed through more than 25 years of architectural design teaching. Working in heritage settings across England’s North-West, the group has explored contextual responses to charged urban environments at all scales. In the past five years the Research Group has built on the UK ‘Localism’ legislation with its opportunity to harness the passion people have for the places they live and work, and devolve decision-making to the most local level.

This research project has recorded, analysed, intervened and exhibited finidings in places with heritage assets, but whose infrastructure in various ways (employment, affordable housing, open space, traffic management, commercial enterprise) hampers future sustainability.

Project Details


Sally Stone, Laura Sanderson, John Lee


Cartmel Priory, Bollington Neighbourhood Planning Committee, Bakewell Neighbourhood Planning Committee, Wilmslow Neighbourhood Planning Committee, Rochdale Heritage Action Zone, Shrewsbury Big Plan

Project Start Date


Research Outputs


Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., Lee, SJ., 2017. Bakewell : Some Ideas, Bakewell Town Hall, 16/6/2017.

Sanderson, L., Lee, SJ., Stone, SH., 2017. The Way We Live Now, Bakewell Town Hall, 24/2/2017.

Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., Lee, SJ., 2016. Bollington. Real : Imagined, Bollington Arts Centre, 22/5/2016.

Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., Lee, SJ., 2016. Oddments and Epigrams : Interventions in Bollington, Bollington Arts Centre, 18/1/2016 - 20/1/2016.

Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., Lee, SJ., 2013. If on a Winter's Night a Traveller : The Drawings, Cartmel Priory, 17/6/2013.

Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., Lee, SJ., 2013. If on a Winter's Night a Traveller : The Models, RIBA HUB : Manchester, 19/6/2013.

Book Chapters

, 2006. .


Stone, SH., Sanderson, L., Lee, SJ., 2017. 'Reclaiming the Road: Public Realm Improvement Proposals for Bollington in Cheshire'.

Conference Papers

Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., 2017. 'The Way We Live Now : How Architectural Education can support the Urban Development of Small Settlements', AMPS, Derby, 22/6/2017 - 23/6/2017.

Sanderson, L., Stone, SH., 2016. 'Trouble in Happy Valley: The Documentation of a Research Through Design Collaborative Project between a Postgraduate Atelier at the Manchester School of Architecture and the Local Community of a Small Town.', EAAE ARCC, Lisbon, 14/6/2016 - 18/6/2016.

, 2013. .

Other Outputs

Stone, SH., Sanderson, LM., Lee, SJ., 2017. 'The Way We Live Now : Symposium'.

Project Staff

John Lee
John Lee Senior Lecturer, School Technologies Lead (MArch) View profile
Professor Sally Stone
Professor Sally Stone Professor of Adaptive Reuse and Pedagogical Innovation View profile