The house sits between two worlds – a courtyard and a walled garden.
The design for this 284M2 house is based on the desire to both enjoy a south facing aspect, yet also engage with the walled garden to the north, formerly part of a nearby Estate. The house therefore becomes part of the rebuilt wall, so it literally becomes part of the walled garden. As the site rises front to back, and with the overall height strictly controlled by planning restrictions, the house sits level so that the inner courtyard becomes partially sunken as the ground rises, increasing the sense of enclosure.
A single-storey wing containing guest suite and study occupy the front beneath a sedum roof, while the main living spaces face south to enclose the courtyard and are set back beneath the upper floor to shade the fully glazed wall. A large open plan kitchen-dining-living space faces into the courtyard and porcelain tiles slide between the two, blurring the indoor and outdoor living experience. The upper floor contains bedroom accommodation within a timber-clad volume that sits above the rebuilt red brick of the walled garden, which culminates in a chimney that ties both volumes together.
The ground floor walls to the house are faced in flint, derived from the adjoining listed former schoolhouse, while the upper ‘box’ floats above the garden wall and is clad in sweet chestnut boarding. The courtyard is designed to have a ‘zen-like’ calm and simple, so contains a square of mown grass, a pool and a single Persian Ironwood tree.
The house has a 14kW Swedish ground source heat pump system that serves underfloor heating. Carbon emissions which have been reduced by 50% compared to equivalent services provided by an oil-fired boiler. A stove provides a heart to the living space.