Our People

Who we are

People are at the heart of how we design and operate as a practice

Our Office

Architects join vHH knowing that their career will be nurtured and they will be valued as individuals, both professionally and personally. Working in an open plan studio, and eating together regularly, encourages creativity and productivity as well as forging friendships.

Working as a Team

Each project is designed by a team of architects chosen for their relevant abilities and experience. That team remains the same from start to finish, which is beneficial for the client and our architects, ensuring they develop professionally and take personal pride in the project.

Meet the Team

  • James McCosh

    BA(Hons), AA Dip, RIBA

    Partner

    Josh joined vHH in 1999, and was appointed an Associate in 2001 and a Director in 2004. In 2006 he became a Partner when the practice became an LLP. With a family tree that includes artists, industrialists and engineers, Josh grew up ‘taking things apart, sometimes managing to put them back together again’, and progressed to designing and making things. At school he had a particular interest in ceramics. ‘My decision to study architecture came after meeting architect John Prizeman, who persuaded me that my love of creating things could also be developed in architecture.’

    After working for several small practices Josh decided to look for an established practice with a more varied portfolio. His first job at vHH was the Chinese Picture Gallery at the Ashmolean Museum, inserting an addition within an existing Grade I listed building. This set the tone for several subsequent projects that have involved the creative adaptation and reuse of listed buildings or sensitive sites, designing with an understanding of the conservation issues,now one of his particular areas of expertise. This includes work at Chatham Historic Dockyard, the redevelopment of Bolton Market Hall, and most recently the reordering of Leicester Cathedral and its precinct, including the high profile design of a tomb for Richard III.

    Josh has also been responsible for several education projects including the Classics faculty at Oxford University, the refurbishment of Chelmsford College’s two sites, the new Bow School in Tower Hamlets and the redevelopment of a large catholic school in Flanders. ‘I am very interested in the process that creates a new building, including understanding viability and advocacy with stakeholders.’ He enjoys working closely with his clients and engaging with large specialist teams, such as for the redevelopment of Portsmouth’s Northern Quarter. He was instrumental in vHH’s adoption of BIM. He was a member of the South East Regional Design Panel for nine years, and is a member of SPAB

  • Peter Hanson

    BArch, MA

    Associate

    Peter joined the team at vHH in 2008. He has worked in a wide range of sectors, with extensive education experience including Bow School, and College-O.-L.-V.-ten-Doorn in Belgium, and heritage projects including Corfield Court for St John’s College, Cambridge, and the re-ordering of Leicester Cathedral.

    He has significant experience of working with BIM and integrating complex digital survey data, and his skill in photography, digital modelling and visualisations means that he has taken a major role in many of the practice’s competition entries.

    He is committed to designing sustainable buildings and led our first Passivhaus project on site, the New Ark junior school building, which was completed in 2017.  Peter was made an Associate of the practice in March 2019.

  • Niamh Cronin

    BA (Hons), Dip Arch, MArch

    Associate
    Niamh Cronin

    Niamh was born in South Africa and moved to Ireland to complete secondary school, before going to university at Edinburgh College of Art. A trip to Northern Spain, which included newly-regenerated Bilbao and San Sebastián, convinced her that she wanted to become an architect.

    Before moving to London, Niamh worked in Ireland, South Africa and Scotland, on a variety of project types from healthcare to residential. Since coming to the practice in 2011 she has been involved in education projects.

  • Piyush Pau

    BA (Hons), Dip Arch, MArch

    Associate, Finance Manager
    Piyush Pau

    Piyush moved to the UK from Kenya with his parents when he was 10. He qualified as an accountant at Newcastle University and joined vHH in 2004 after growing tired of working for large corporations.

    ‘I wanted to come to somewhere smaller – there’s a lot of politics in big corporations and I was tired of working with such big teams. Ever since I arrived at vHH I’ve loved it, it was definitely the right move. The people are really great to work with.’

    Piyush has a passion for sport. He plays golf regularly and runs a badminton club. He also enjoys travelling.

  • Kate Withstandley

    BA (Hons) History of Art

    Marketing Manager
    Kate Withstandley

    Kate joined vHH as Marketing Assistant in 2008, becoming Marketing Manager in 2011. She has a degree in Art History and a passion for the arts in general. She is co-founder and Chair of Dartford Arts Network and enjoys producing art across a variety of media. Kate is interested in spaces and places, their form and function – how they connect communities through cultural activities as well as social interaction, and the relationship between architecture, spatial planning and art/culture.

    ‘One of the main reasons I wanted to work here was the number of social projects they’re involved with, alongside the fact that they really care about the spaces they produce and how it impacts the end user. It’s an inspiring place to work and I have seen how productive it is to insist on the simple things, like not eating lunch at our desks, but sharing a meal together.’

  • Yuli Lee

    Vordiplom in Architecture

    Consultant
    Yuli Lee

    Yuli was born and raised in Germany. She began her architectural training in Germany and came to England on an exchange programme. She finished her diploma in London, met her future husband and has remained here ever since. She joined vHH in 2008, applying to the practice after seeing the practice’s work in Building Design magazine.

    She has extensive experience on many different project types, including the new extension and refurbishment of the main hospital entrance at Guy’s Hospital, as well as several schools and further education colleges, and Leicester Cathedral. The atmosphere in the vHH office keeps Yuli here, as much as the interesting portfolio of work.

    ‘I am made to feel valued as an individual person, a mother and an architect.’

  • Gloria Volpato

    BArch (Hons) / MArch

    Architect
    Gloria Volpato

    After attending High School, Gloria studied architecture at IUAV University of Venice, graduating in 2016 with honours. Her academic career focused on the development of specific issues of contemporary architecture: Heritage, Environmental Sustainability, and City and Landscape. She is interested in the simultaneous inclusion of several disciplines aimed at establishing responsible architecture design.

    During her work experience in Spain and two years working in Italy, she was involved in a variety of projects including schools and public spaces.

  • Helen Bennett

    BA (hons), DipArch, PgDip

    Architect
    Helen Bennett

    Following her Postgraduate studies Helen has gained experience across a variety of different sectors, but has always particularly enjoyed working on school projects. With a desire to work within and learn more about environmentally conscious architecture, Helen was impressed by vHH’s enthusiasm and their committed approach to minimising  environmental impact through their projects and within the education sector.

    During her postgrad studies at The Cass, London Met, this passion for sustainable solutions was galvanised by working as part of a wider live project with a community in Kathmandu, Nepal. Both her postgrad projects and undergrad studies at Sheffield University explored how architecture can empower and enrich communities by creating self-sustaining districts that protect and regenerate their surroundings.

  • Carol Meteyard

    BA (Hons), MArch, PgDip

    Architect

    Carol joined vHH after spending 5 months in Utah building straw bale affordable housing, which greatly increased her knowledge of natural building. She is passionate about creating low impact buildings that have an environmental and social conscience. She studied at Newcastle University for both her Part 1 and Part 2, culminating in a thesis exploring the possibilities of hemp and rethinking the typology of student housing,then completed her Part 3 at Westminster University.

    Carol was drawn to vHH by their enthusiasm for passivhaus design and portfolio of well-designed schools, which builds upon her background of educational design. She has worked on primary, secondary and university buildings at previous practices and is keen to gain greater experience through Rugby Radio Station School, which she has been working on since joining the team