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About Us

Better living, by design

What we stand for

We’re on a mission to help everyone live in beautiful, practical homes that have minimal impact on our planet.

Our lives are centred around our homes so why shouldn’t they be designed to maximise your happiness and health?

Who are we?

We love Yorkshire. We live to create.
We are families and communities

We’re active, outdoor people with a passion for architecture. We’re fascinated with the way buildings are made; the nuts and bolts of the process. This vim and curiosity drives us to make Sheffield an even better city in which to live.

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Alan MacDonaldDirector

Alan loves problem-solving and working with clients to generate maximum value by designing beautiful buildings with challenging briefs. He’s a passionate mountain biker and committed skier who even braves Scottish conditions to get his fix.

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Alasdair StruthersProject Architect 

Alasdair believes in creating architecture for the common good, specifically the role of housing in building a happy, sociable society. He loves walking in the Peaks with his family. He’s also a lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University and a visiting critic.

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Anna RoperProject Architect

Anna loves to create excellent homes tailored to the people who live in them. She is also passionate about guiding and supporting our clients through the building process. Outside of work, you’ll find Anna reading or planning her next long-distance walking trail. Her favourite walk so far has been the West Highland Way, and she’d love to complete all of the UK national trails one day.

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Claire TaylorProject Architect

As a graduate of the Centre for Alternative Technology, Claire is passionate about sustainable design. A keen cyclist, Claire puts us to shame with her commitment to cycling everywhere, come rain or shine.

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Paul TestaDirector

Paul’s vision when he founded HEM was to bring together his passion for sustainability and architecture to create beautiful and practical homes. He’s also a lecturer at the University of Sheffield and a connoisseur of Sheffield’s finest coffee shops.

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Julie MaxwellProject Architect

Julie has an impeccable eye for detail, having honed construction drawings for buildings across Europe. Julie can always recommend a good book or exhibition thanks to her passion for contemporary design and insight as co-owner of La Biblioteka.

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Liam SeamanArchitectural Assistant

Liam is passionate about architectural theory. Out of work, you’ll either find him supporting his beloved Leeds United football team, reading a book (the older, the better) or watching a film you’ve never heard of at the cinema.

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Sam TrevorArchitectural Technologist

Sam is passionate about innovative and sustainable construction and making a building’s design pop through well-considered detailing. Outside of work, he likes to explore Sheffield’s coffee, food and music scene. 

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Nathan StocksPart II Architectural Assistant

Nathan loves developing client briefs through rigorous and sustainable design practices. Outside of work, Nathan loves visiting new places with friends and family, tending to his woodland terrarium and enjoying a good single malt whisky.

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Owais AbidPart I Architectural Assistant

Owais recently joined the practice after completing his undergrad at the University of Sheffield. During his studies he established a passion for light and form in architecture. Outside of architecture, Owais is a keen photographer who develops his own film. He also prints his photos in a homemade darkroom.

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Steve SmithOffice & Projects Manager

Steve is responsible for streamlining the way we operate in the practice. He’s always had a keen interest in creative projects and a fascination with how each stage of the process unfolds. Outside of office life, you will usually find Steve running, cycling or walking his dogs through the peaks. He’s also a passionate supporter of Everton FC, but sometimes doesn’t like to admit it. 

Helping you transform your dream into reality.

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