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With our barn conversion project at Gatcombe Farm nearing its final phase, we're excited to share our latest update. Transforming a weathered barn into a functional living space involved navigating through obstacles, but our journey through this project showcases how we meet challenges with innovative solutions.

The interior nears completion

Navigating the Landscape

Our starting point was a deteriorated barn situated on a sloping plot. This unique location within the greenbelt, surrounded by operational farmlands and listed structures, presented a distinct set of challenges that demanded a careful approach.

Architectural planning for barn conversions offers opportunities and complexities. While the National Planning Policy Framework [NPPF] encourages such endeavours, demonstrating viability requires creativity.

Retaining a significant portion of the original structure was the key challenge, as at first glance the timber trusses appeared unsalvageable. However, with careful repairs and varnishing they have become a central feature of the home, and a warm reminder of its history.

A pivotal decision was our split-level design. This approach allowed us to prioritise both comfort and functionality. Daytime spaces like the lounge, kitchen, and office were positioned for maximum natural light, whereas less occupied spaces such as bedrooms and bathrooms were designed with cosy, intimate levels of lighting in mind. In addition to this, the split layout established a seamless connection between indoor and outdoor space, transforming outdoor spaces into an integral part of daily living.

Our digital 3D model (left) vs the - almost - finished project (right)

What’s next?

As the project progresses, the final phase approaches - the installation of the cladding, which will take place over the next few weeks. This step signifies the final transformation of the barn, and the timber will adorn the home with a warm natural appearance.

The cladding begins

Overall, this project stands as a testament to our firm’s commitment to innovation and problem-solving. We look forward to seeing the finished transformation and will be sure to post an update. In the meantime, you can read more about this project here or explore all our projects here.

We first designed a series of extensions to make this modern-style house more suitable to the family that lives there almost a year ago. These designs have now been redone based on feedback we recieved from the first application, and we are optimistic that our new and improved designs will successfully recieve permission.

Perspective sketch of the proposed front extension

At the front of the house, the kitchen is expanded with a single-storey extension. This also creates the oppurtunity for a new porch in front of the existing front door. This part of the design uses a textured cement fibre cladding as it's unique appearance, durability, and sound-proofing make it best suited to the road-facing side of the house.

Perspective sketch of the rear extension

At the rear of the house, our design takes an underused section of the garden and turns it into a new orangerie, greatly increasing the living space of the house and creating a valuable room for a plant-loving family. This also allows us to expand the space above, turning the previous plant room into a new bathroom and hall with wide views of the back garden. Additionally, the parapet walls around the garage roof are raised, creating a more usable terrace.

Proposed plans, with new extensions shown in orange

We look forward to hearing the results of our newest application and will be sure to update the blog as things develop. In the meantime, you can view our other residential projects or find out more about this design.

Today we'll be revisiting a project from 2021, as we've recently recieved some brilliant photos of the finished result from the client. In this project, we reorganised a bungalow, and the site as a whole, to provide a series of thoughtful, well designed spaces to meet the changing needs of the client and improve the appearance of the house.

Thoughtful redesign

The biggest development was the new courtyard located in an under-utilised area south of the house. We repurposed this space to provide our client with new bicycle parking, recycling storage and an electric vehicle charging port.

Originally, the entrance to the house was through a narrow side alley, and only the garage was accessible via the front. We elected to bring the entrance to the front of the house, giving it a stylish contemporary facade made of timber with fibre cement cladding panels. The front garden was then redone in a permeable finish to create a new parking space surrounded by a series of flowerbeds.

Improving sustainability

A number of sustainable features were also introduced, including an air source heat pump and solar panels. Combined with the carefully considered airtightness and insulation of the new extensions, these developments will improve the energy efficiency of the house thereby saving the client money on their gas and electricity bills.

We offer a sustainability assessment service as part of all of out design projects - this allows us find our clients the most efficient, cost-effective energy-saving solutions for their project. If you're looking for a way to save energy in your home or extension project, please get in touch today to see how we can help.

Contemporary house interior with a wooden wall finish.
The cosy finished interior

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