Popping-in?

We designed our studio; it's filled with light and music. There are multiple meeting rooms, a well stocked kitchen, and an indoor garden (with fishpond). Pop-in for tea and stay to use a spare desk for as long as you need.

11 Greenwich Centre Business Park,
53 Norman Road, Greenwich
London SE10 9QF

Public transport

We’re next to Greenwich train and DLR station. We have a door right on the concourse but it’s different to our postal address.

From Greenwich rail platform

This video shows the route to take from the train that will arrive at Greenwich rail station from London Bridge.

From Greenwich DLR station

This video shows the route to take from the DLR that will arrive at Greenwich DLR station from Bank.

By car

If you have to come by car, we have a couple of parking spaces in front of our studio. Call ahead to make sure they’re free, and use our postcode (SE10 9QF) to guide you in.

Get in touch

We’d love to hear from you. Use whichever medium works best for you.

11 Greenwich Centre Business Park,
53 Norman Road, Greenwich
London SE10 9QF

New project enquiry

It's exciting to chat about potential new projects. We don't have a ‘sales’ team or a form to fill in. Call us or give us a little detail via email and we'll get straight back to you.

enquiry@cogdesign.com

Website support

If you're a client then you'll be best served by calling us or contacting us via Basecamp, otherwise you can use this dedicated email that reaches all of the digital team.

digital@cogdesign.com

Finance questions

This email hits the inboxes of the people who deal with our bookkeeping and finances.

accounts@cogdesign.com

Just want a chat?

Sometimes enquiries don't fall neatly under a heading, do they?

hello@cogdesign.com

Cultural Calendar

A round-up of recommendations and reviews, sent on the first Friday of each month, topped-off with a commissioned image from a talented new illustrator. Sign-up and tell your friends.

Sign me up Cultural Calendar

Cog News

An irregular update of activity from our studio. Showing off about great new projects, announcements, job opportunities, that sort of thing. Sign-up and tell your friends.

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Dennis Severs’ House

Dennis Severs’ House

For our November Cog Night the team travelled back in time to discover life in 18th Century Spitalfields, by candle light at Dennis Severs house. Lucy talks about the feeling of being in 18 Folgate Street.

Right from the off, you’ll probably notice something quite unusual about this review. There are almost no photographs which is very unusual for a post in this journal.

That’s for a few reasons: first off, upon our arrival on a damp November evening at the tall, shuttered house (with an oil lamp burning outside), we were warned by the steward not to take any photographs inside the house.

It’s not unheard of us to break the rules, but there’s another reason why none of us pulled out our phones to take a quick snap of the different rooms we explored within the historic house. We had a feeling that we shouldn’t.

And that feeling is hard to describe.

Some of the Cog team outside 18 Folgate Street

Dennis Severs created and curated the imaginary home of a family of French Huguenot silk-weavers, from 1724 to the 20th century, as a labour of love. The conceit is that you are in fact in the home of a person who has just left the room, for a split second. It’s easy to forget that those people can’t have just left because they would have lived hundreds of years ago.

A visit to 18 Folgate street is a trip through time. Each of the five floors is set-up in a different historic period, from the 18th Century onwards. Each floor contains the recognisable set of rooms: a kitchen, a bedroom, a sitting room.

The commitment of the staff at Dennis Severs’ House, to maintain his lovingly constructed home is impressive although, unlike the founder, they don’t actually live in the house to recreate this atmosphere.

The lit fireplace, with bread toasting, takes you back to the early 1700s. The half drunk tea, in a parlour, evokes Georgian inhabitants. These objects and many more have been carefully laid out to portray those who ‘inhabit’ the house.

All these cues and clues add up to an eerie feeling. It’s the feeling that you’re truly intruding in someone’s home, and they’ve just popped out to answer the front door. And this is the real reason why we felt uncomfortable taking any photographs.

As the labels dotted around the house stated ‘you either see it or you don’t’. With limited interpretation and guidance, Dennis Severs’ House relies on visitors having either some historical knowledge of the 18th Century, or a fantastic imagination and acceptance of something other than their own experience.

We all took different things from the experience, the tiny details resonating in different ways with different members of the team: the smells, the sounds, the historically accurate (and less accurate) details, or the design choices favoured by those historic ‘residents’.

But the biggest questions this place leave you with are: ‘what mark would I make?’ and ‘what does my kitchen look like as I leave to answer the knock at the door, or my bedroom as I run downstairs to grab my ringing mobile phone?’

The truth is Dennis’ Severs House is intended to remind us that the people it represents were just that, people. Despite the centuries that divide us, they were just like us.


Illustration by Lucia Vinti for our Cultural Calendar.