It was my great pleasure last year to receive a design commission from one of my favourite people in the industry, an all round top man by the name of Mr Jason Orme, Editor at Homebuilding and Renovating Magazine.
Jason and I have known each other for many years and have enjoyed sharing our experiences and knowledge through our work with the magazine and fleeting 10 minute meetings at the exhibitions…
Jason came to me as we had a shared vision for this proposed contemporary makeover on a 60’s house he had bought with his family. The existing house is cool but not real cool…..
Our vision for the project is to take what is good about the current building such as the horizontal emphasis to architectural form and then blend this with more contemporary additions and fusions..
Here are some images of the current house and also the concepts we have put forwards as part of our pre-application work. The site does lie within the Conservation Area so this is the best way to proceed initially.
Here are the before and after proposals for the floor layouts…..
And here are the existing elevations and concepts for remodel
The existing front elevation
The proposed remodelled front elevation
An overview of all remodelled elevations….
Loving the real 60’s/70’s flavour on this one now… but it still resonates with architecture of today and has the exactly the feel i was after..
And here is some of our inspiration…..
Lets see what happens with this one…. thanks for the opportunity J! 🙂
Here is a little update on my Suffolk barn clients…
I have tried to capture a quick snapshot of all the hard work which has taken place over the last 4 weeks.
They had their Oakwrights frame delivered 4 weeks ago and are now in the closing stages of having this fully erected and thermally wrapped using the amazing Wrightwall Natural system…. in effect, a near watertight shell! Amazing to have such a large part of the build up and done in the space of a month.
You may remember this is the project we spent 7 years getting planning for so to say the clients are enjoying the speed of everything now is an understatement! And they managed to get rented accommodation right next to the plot which is perfect for day to day management.
concrete pump lorry
perimeter brickwork and sleeper walls going in ready for block and beam floor
block and beam floor
block and beam floor
final grouting done… we have a slab!
The Oakwrights frame and floor joists arrive
Oak frame going up
central frame going in
now we’re talking… proper way to build a house!
Topping out of the frame.. smiley clients and proud carpenters 🙂
frame ‘topped out’
now look… everyone is smiley 🙂
The main frame is really taking shape now and cart-lodge is up
Wright-Wall Natural encapsulation panels being craned into place
Check out the ‘wrapped’ building already. The horizontal battens provide fixing for plasterboard and also create a service void for electrics/plumbing
View looking down into hallway on left and ground floor vaulted master bedroom and en-suite to the right. Bedroom will be amazing!
Posi-joists installed. Note the web design allows easy routing of pipes and wires throughout
Encaspulation panels flying into place
arty night shot…
Hope you enjoyed the journey so far… lots more to come over the coming weeks.
I have been approached by our good friends at True North to see if I have any clients past, present or future who would like to be involved with series 3 which is currently in the planning stage.
The current series 2 started a couple of weeks ago and is hosted by the thoroughly decent Charlie Luxton.
A project i designed in Hertfordshire was the first programme of series 1 and i also have some clients down in Surrey who are being filmed at the moment.
If you would like to be featured pleased do let me know and i will have a chat with True North and make the necessary introductions. If you would like a completed project featured as the inspiration house, this would typically be fully completed, landscaped etc. If you would like your whole build project to be featured then i can make the necessary introductions at the very earliest stage possible even if you have only just secured your plot. From speaking to my other clients who have been featured, they did say its a great catalog and memento of their probably once in a lifetime project.
Good news this morning as we have achieved the national recognition of submitting fully digital online planning applications through the government central hub, The Planning Portal. As such we are now champions apparently! 🙂
We have been working with the portal since its inception and have tweaked and refined how we prepare and submit our applications to ensure they meet the relevant criteria.
Bearing in mind most of my work is produced freehand, this has at times been testing but the product we now produce not only meets with our clients agreement but it is also satisfying to receive approval for our work from central government.
This does not mean the end of the road in terms of our submission approach though as there are further enhancements planned for the near future.
We had a great end to the week last week when this scheme was approved!
This was once again a very ambitious proposal and ‘word on the street’ according to various local sources was that we didn’t stand a chance. Well, you know me by now…. if i hear something like that i am definitely gonna give it a crack and prove them wrong….
I met these clients only at the end of last year so the process has been pretty swift to be fair. The site itself is elevated facing the village green of a sleepy Buckinghamshire village, it has a Grade II listed house directly opposite and is within the Aylesbury Vale District Council Conservation Area. Now, AVDC do have a reputation for being pretty tough but i think this is a little unfair in my opinion. What i think they do have is high standards when it comes to the design and integration of new dwellings into established environments. Something they would expect even more so within a Conservation Area.
We did a good pre-application process with AVDC and worked closely with the planning officer and conservation officer and between us, we collectively shaped the scheme to ensure the clients are happy with with it as well as the council. We had a few concerns from neighbours and also the parish council, but again, with good communication flowing between everyone and the design decisions being made here, we got it spot on for everyone.
What we did ultimately achieve with this project is a two storey dwelling as a replacement to a bungalow which most people considered impossible, especially in such a sensitive location. How we got it is down to a number of reasons but one of the key factors was the the fact that both the planning officer and conservation got what we were doing and what i stand for as a house designer. They concluded within their reports that the removal of the existing bungalow and the construction of this new dwelling would present an opportunity to enhance the conservation area.
This is the existing dwelling on the site.
And this is the replacement dwelling all approved and ready to go…!
Massive congratulations to our lovely clients,.. i know they are going to be very happy in their new family home.
Well, this is what its all about really….. 🙂
I had these photos sent through the other day from clients i designed and got planning for last year in lovely Buckinghamshire and i think they like the house now the oak frame has gone up… big smiles is what its all about.
This was a real toughie too.. the existing dwelling which we wanted to demolish because it was basically knackered sat in the Green Belt and in a Conservation Area so was always gonna be a fight.
We had to negotiate hard with the notoriously difficult Chiltern District Council and after a few design progressions and liaison with the planners we did get a result. More importantly, we got a result which hits the spot on every level for all members of the family and could easily be their lifetime home….
Some great shots of the Oakwrights frame and erection team too!
What an absolutely fantastic way to finish the week off! We have just secured planning permission for more clients in Suffolk and this one is a real beaut!!
Its a contemporary spin on a classic render and timbered Suffolk barn for a replacement dwelling which sits facing a village green.
The job had its moments and we had to overcome the newts that ‘may or may not have been there’ in the various ponds and moat that surround the site and either way, we have designed the scheme with our ‘newt lover’ hat on so the little critters will be fine..
Happy days though… the clients are over the moon and quite rightly so…
This is the existing dwelling which will shortly be introduced to ‘Mr JCB’ 🙂
This is the site layout showing the existing dwelling in red and the approved replacement in blue
And the approved scheme design….
Seems only 5 minutes ago we were working with these great clients from London.
They had decided to make the move to the countryside and head back towards Suffolk where they were born.
They secured a small cottage on a great countryside plot. When i say great, i mean great!! On a very quiet road out of the village, 360 degree open countryside views, a large garden with orchard and the nearest neighbour about a mile away… happy days right? Well, yes to be fair,… it was not looking bad at all although we had a planning battle ahead of us… something i never mind 😉
Their plans for the place were to radically extend the cottage up to more than 100% increase and add a 3-4 bay outbuilding with studio space above. We had all the local planning specialists saying it was never going to happen and we also had a knock back from the council during our pre-application work. However, we did work closely with the planning department and arrived at a solution whereby we could get the increase the clients were looking for but i just made it look a lot less.! 🙂 This was achieved by breaking the extensions up into various component elements and referencing them to local vernacular styles.
I had some photos sent through recently so decided to revisit the project looking back at my drawings and i have to say i am very pleased with it. The clients absolutely love it and i am planning to get up to see them soon for some finished shots to be taken.
Hope you enjoy
This was the original ground floor….
And this the extended ground floor
This was the original first floor
And this the extended first floor
A couple of before and after images of the front and rear elevations
and some photos from the client….
So, we are expanding here and after me and the missus and Marley the dog became 4 with the birth of our daugther, we are soon to become five with the arrival of Tonks Jnr 2 so we need some space!!
When we bought our cottage around 10 years ago it was just a shoe box. We extended in 2005, built the studio and garages in 2007 and extended again in 2009 and now we are gonna do it again… cannot wait!
‘The Brain’ will connect all of our various additions which although work ok as they are, i think a new flow will be created in our home which will work really well for us now we are a growing family.
Here is a breakdown on how we got the space…. original house in red, 2 storey rear extension in blue which received full planning approval, the outbuildings are in green and were built under Permitted Development (PD) therefore not requiring a planning application and likewise, the kitchen extension in orange was also a PD project.
And for the next chapter, we had to apply for a full application which was approved last week and it looks a little something like this..
As viewed from the rear, ‘The Brain’ is the grey building which will feature a small mezzanine play deck for the kids and will be clad in grey metal seam cladding to reflect those found on the neighbouring farm.
My wife thinks i am a bit weird and crazy for the whole ‘brain’ thing but i kinda like that to be honest. She will love it, the kids will love it so happy days…