Architecture graduate’s vision aims to put faith back into London residents


A former architecture student from Birmingham City University has been crowned the winner of a design competition aimed at bringing the diverse faiths of a London suburb together.

The competition – organised by South West London based JB Builders – challenged architects and designers to design a spiritual centre in Battersea where people of different religious backgrounds could relax and pray.

Former Birmingham City University student, Debbie Flevotomou, impressed judges with her design, based on the freedom of movement. She said: “The design was based on the division of spaces to pray and interaction areas, with internal and external atriums used as interaction areas for visitors. The highest point is the tower, shared by all the religions and works as a point of reference for the surrounding district. The freedom of movement, the religion centre gives to the visitor is expressed in the freedom of the design forms. The design appears abstract, monumental and sculptural like a piece of art.”

Debbie, originally from Athens, graduated from Birmingham City University in 2006 after completing the PG Dip Architecture Part II and the MA Architecture. Since then she has gained a wide range of experience in various practices across the UK and has been involved in a diverse range of design projects, from hospitals, five star hotels and an airport. Debbie now has her own practice - Debbie Flevotomou Architects - based in London, designing landmarks and luxury developments in the UK, Europe and the Middle East.

On winning the competition, she said: “It was a complete surprise to be announced as the winner. It was the first competition the practice has taken part in and winning has been a real confidence booster.”

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