top of page
Robert Bedner at Cura Design


CURA Design brings together people from different backgrounds with the same idea.

About Cura Design


Cura Design (formerly Research + Design)  have been in practice for over 14 years and completed over 150 projects working on projects throughout the Southwest UK and London and abroad. Cura Design are a Chartered Practice registered at the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists (London, UK). Our working area includes the southwest of the UK up to and including London though we have also completed projects as far afield as New York City and Taiwan. Rush Service available. Deferred Fee and Uplift Fee arrangements for planning and outline planning applications available. 


In 2009 the office won both a "High Commendation" from the national Alan King Award and Plymouths Abercrombie Award in 2011 for Best Minor Development (New Street Residential Extension). In 2017 the office won Best Community Project and People of Plymouth Award (Stiltskin Childrens Theatre) as well as Best Community Project (Union Corner). In addition the practice was Winner (in conjuction with Hand Drawn homes and Peter Warm Consultants) of the RIBA sponsored Plymouth West End Ideas Competition in 2015. We take on all manner of projects though also have a keen interest in biophilic design and permaculture - these are both sustainable types of design that have a love of nature at heart and endeavour to protect and enhance the plants and biodiversity on the site. Biophilic design can also endeavour to increase "the green plot ratio" (ie. increase the amount of plants and local wildlife on the site as part of the design process to what was on the site prior to the project.)  

Cura Design provides architectural design and research services for residential, commercial, healthcare and cultural projects with our relationship to nature as the core design value, the driver and generator for creating a new type of built environment.


Cura Design are currently working on  residential and healthcare and cultural projects in Worton - Wiltshire (AONB), Kilve - Somerset (next to Quontock AONB), Gerrards Cross -South Bucks and Newton Ferrers(waterfront) - Devon, Topsham , Devon, Okehampton Cornwall, and Plymouth City Centre. Cura Designs projects range from research services and workshops for large healthcare providers to  collaborating with self builders and Clients that like to get involved in the design.



As a small office, we are always interested in hearing from talented and motivated students and architects who work well under their own initiative and are looking for a practice they can commit to. In addition, we have partnered with other architectural practices and developers for specific projects. We work on PCs and Macs and predominantly use Autocad, Adobe Creative Suite, Sketchup and 3D Rendering Software. As of June 2022 we are only hiring freelancers and consultants (though this may change in the near future). Ideally condidates should be located in the Southwest UK though also we do work with people in London and abroad for specific projects.

If you are potentially interested in joining the practice please send us a hard copy letter, CV and portfolio.

We keep portfolios on file for 6 months and will contact you should an appropriate vacancy arise. We regret that we are not able to respond to all applications.

Please submit a hard copy of your CV and portfolio to Cura Design 6 Dale Road Plymouth PL4 6PE Attention: Office Manager.


A note about Paragraph 80 houses

Its clear that Biophilic Design can play a large role in the raising of design standards and producing residential designs of exceptional quality. The Government recently published its latest iteration of the NPPF in July 2021 and the provisions within paragraph 79 of the former NPPF 2019 are now contained in paragraph 80 of the NPPF 2021:


“Planning policies and decisions should avoid the development of isolated homes in the countryside unless one or more of the following circumstances apply:

"The design is of exceptional quality, in that it:
- is truly outstanding, reflecting the highest standards in architecture, and would help to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas; and
- would significantly enhance its immediate setting, and be sensitive to the defining characteristics of the local area.

— NPPF, paragraph 80 (criterion e) (2021)

 A note from Robert Bedner,  Director Of Cura Design


My architectural practice, recently renamed Cura Design was started in 2007 and has operated as a design studio since. During this period of time Ive had opportunities to work with some great people both in the southwest and as well with ongoing contacts and collaborators in New York and London.


My foundation and training were gained from a technical perspective and formed from working for a wide range of internationally recognized practitioners of architecture and art in Europe and the USA including two Pritzker Prize winning architectural practices : Sverre Fehn in Norway, Renzo Piano in Paris and the American legendary Artist Vito Acconci in New York City whose diverse practice eventually included sculpture, architectural design, and landscape design.


In 2007 I became a Chartered Architectural Technologist and founded Research + Design. I have had experience designing and running projects at significant heritage sites in and around Plymouth including The Millfields, Royal William Yard and various residential sites.


In 2020, Research + Design was renamed Cura Design.

Cura as a word can be translated in Portugese and Spanish as "the process of making or becoming sound or healthy again" or "the gift of healing". Simply put, Cura Design endeavours to heal and to reconnect with the natural world through a design process that heals the natural world and also heals and enhances the built enviroment and importantly our well being. There are a great deal of studies and literature both in the Uk and abroad that have quantified and validated this approach.


Speaking and Events

In 2022 Cura presented its work and perspective on biophlic design for integrating nature into our buildings at Future Plymouth 2030 ( ) and recently on the podcast at the Journal of Biophilic Design (to be aired in February 2022). Cura will be attending the FutureBuild Show at Londons Excel Centre March 1 to 3.


In 2021 Cura presented at Plymouth University Sustainable Earth 2021 - Climate Emergency - the Race to Net Zero and Plymouth “Grey to Green” 2021 with Dusty Gedge.


Cura have also been featured at Homebuilding and Renovating Show London and Bath 2021, CESW Exeter Climate Summit 2018, The 13th Biennial European Town and Town Planners Conference 2019,Greenbuild Expo, the Expert Advice Centre Grand Designs Live, and BBC Radio Devon speaking about local architectural issues.

Robert Bedner has presented biophilic design and current projects at the CESW Exeter Climate Summit 2018, The 13th Biennial European Town and Town Planners Conference 2019, and the Sustainable Earth 2021 - Climate Emergency - the Race to Net Zero. Previously Robert lectured as Module Leader at the University of Plymouth in 2010-2012 and in the past featured at Greenbuild Expo, the Expert Advice Centre Grand Designs Live, and BBC Radio Devon speaking about local architectural issues.  Please contact for enquiries regarding speaking and public presentations.

Contributers and Collaborators for Current and Past projects:

Crystal Hopwood, Ludovic Bacon, Giulia Scaramuzzi, Julie Lndemarre, Andreas Nann, Ebony Dodgen, Ben Tapscott,Izzy Bascoy, Conal Stubbs,Jesus Garcia Perojie, Matic Kuer, Simone Plassard, Anrea Ghenzi, Fanni Weihmuller, Studio JB, Structurehaus Structural Engineers.

bottom of page