Retaining the original character of an old building while, at the same time, making a suitable residence can be challenging. We make it our business to use creativity to solve problems like these, and to design unusual, enjoyable living spaces. The Coach House was originally used as an artist’s studio. However, in recent years it had fallen into disrepair. The project was to convert the building into a two-bedroom house. The property was dismantled and we reconstructed it from the inside. Over 80% of the internal walls were rebuilt in new block work. The remaining walls were tanked and new insulated concrete floors were installed.
The main design challenge was that there was an access passage through the lower level of the house. Retaining the passage was important if we were to preserve the character of the building, but it was going to have a direct impact on the amount of living space available. The solution was to turn the design in its head and put the living space upstairs and the bedrooms in the lower floor on either side of the passage. We constructed a conventional staircase leading from the front door to the upstairs kitchen and sitting room. A spiral staircase was also installed. This dropped down into the other side of the house, where we build bedroom with an en-suite. On the other side of the passage, there was also a house bathroom.We designed a large open space on the upper floor, which benefitted from lots of natural light from several roof lights. A timber opening at the front the building was used to create a large window full height French style doors in the sitting room. A glass and stainless steel balcony was fitted to finish the outside.