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Our recent Listed Building architect projects

21 Jun '19

The Old Rectory

As an architects practice based in and around the beautiful, and historic, Cotswolds, it is not unusual to be presented with projects that hold the added challenge of being Listed Buildings, or within the curtilage of a listing. Despite the planning restrictions these properties may be faced with, we are always excited by a challenge and enjoy watching our modern designs integrate with the old as the projects develop.

Grade II listed Georgian home
One of the biggest problems we see with older properties is that the design and layout no longer sit well with modern family life. Clients often approach us requesting an internal overhaul and/or extension, to provide larger social areas or a better ‘flow’ to the home. This was the issue faced with our Northamptonshire clients. They owned a stunning Grade II listed Georgian home, and while the property was a dream house, it simply did not work for them. Our architects proposed a design which would refurbish the entire ground floor and then extend outwards into a contemporary, glazed, home gym and lap pool. As the property enters the very final stages of the build it is incredible to see how the designs have benefitted our clients. The property is now the home they had always dreamt of; it flows from room to room creating a comfortable family and entertaining space while never losing its original charm.

Whilst many of the properties we work on are listed, some dwellings are simply situated too close to Listed Buildings, and we must take this into consideration in our designs, being sympathetic to the surroundings. Within Cherwell district we were approached to refurbish a Grade II listed home, once again reworking the internal dimensions, extending the property, building garages and installing a new drive. Our approach was so conscious to the surrounding streetscape we were then approached to build another one-off family home within the grounds of the original property. We were sure to stay within the boundaries of the local architecture, using traditional materials and styles in order to gain planning.

The Old Rectory
The Old Rectory was another example of beautiful traditional architecture within the curtilage of a Grade II listed church. The clients approached us wanting to make better use of the stunning garden, allowing them to enjoy it all year round, even when the weather is bad. They were particularly interested in a modern games room but were worried about gaining planning permission given the historic surroundings. By designing an extension constructed with materials that reflected the original home and surrounding buildings - traditional stone and clay tiles - and removing more modern additions which did not sit well; we were able to gain planning for a luxurious games suite with double height space and mezzanine level which, through the use of extensive glazing, really draws the outside in.

Extensions to listed cottages in villages
Not all our Listed Building projects have been large scale refurbishments and overhauls. We have also been approached to design smaller extensions to listed cottages within quaint villages. In the Oxfordshire village of Hook Norton, we were asked to provide an architecturally designed kitchen extension; the addition gave the owners the dining space they so desperately required, allowing them to remain in the home they loved without having to move to gain extra space. The extension gave all the mod cons requested whilst still sitting comfortably alongside their cottage.

Do you have an interesting architectural project that you are worried may face planning constraints? Perhaps it is a Listed Building or within a conservation area? Why not contact our architects to discuss your concerns and see if they are able to work around the issues presented?