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Coach of the project :

Romain Guillaud, CDEC

How and Where?

Cell Studios is an affordable artists workspace provider in London, England. Grosvenor Works is one of their buildings in the Theydon Road Priority Employment Area in Clapton, East London. This project will expand the existing premises from its current 3 floors, to between 5 and 7 floors. The extension will be crowned with a rooftop greenhouse housing London’s first publicly accessible hydroponics school and high-tech urban farming hub, targeting the creation of new technology-led urban farmers.


The development will seek to minimise both embodied and operational carbon emissions through judicious evaluation of materials for performance, aesthetics and circularity. The owner is committed to achieving BREEAM certification which will drive, among others, water and thermal efficiency, on-site renewable energy generation, effective stormwater management and social sustainability. The greenhouse will host the hydroponics school and serve as a hub for London’s technology led urban farming community. It will showcase growing technology and host the practical modules of the blended learning hydroponics courses offered by the school.

In the event that the school is stalled or unsuccessful, alternative rooftop greenhouse functions have been accounted for including the following...

  • Boutique specialist crop production facility for direct-to-consumer sales ;

  • Flexible event space housing anything from hot yoga sessions to talks or exhibitions ;

  • Bonsai Nursery ;

  • Research greenhouse ;

  • Local school teaching resource


A&f conducted an exhaustive search of accessible flat roofscapes in London and identified 140 candidates. They then sought out the beneficial owners of these properties and submitted templated proposals for the rooftop greenhouse hydroponics school and hub. Of these, Cell Studios is the only active proposal.


Target Market: Grow Your Own enthusiasts and prospective technology-led urban farmers. ​


Richard Priestly, Director, Cell Studios

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