It was Terry and Mickey’s dream to build a home on land they owned behind their house near Greenwich in South East London, so when they saw an episode of Grand Designs featuring a Facit Home the penny dropped.
Originally the couple had wanted to build on top of print maker Mickey’s studio that they had built on the land soon after they bought their house in 1991. However, the two buildings would have been very different both in construction and performance so after much discussion with our team it was agreed that it would be better to knock down the studio and start again.
We worked with Terry and Mickey to understand what they wanted from the house, the size and use of each room to suit their lifestyle and one that would have architectural merit and sit well in its environment, which just happens to be next to a park. The two storey, 220m² home comprises a large studio room and separate study on the second floor along with a second bedroom, while the master bedroom and spacious living/kitchen dining room is on the ground floor.
Terry and Mickey will be spending most of their time in the studio so it made sense to be the room with the view. Situated under two lime trees, the exterior is clad in a timber rain screen coated in a dark stain to reduce the visual impact of the building from the park and reduce the need for ongoing cleaning caused by the dark coloured sap released from the trees.
Their home has also been designed to make the most of solar gain to heat the house during the winter months and the mature trees to the south of the property will provide shading from direct sunlight during the summer.
One of the big pluses of Facit Homes is they provide very detailed costings down to the nth degree. We have been extremely pleased with the cost control that came in within £2,000 of our original budget.
The new home is much lighter than their current Victorian terraced property, featuring bigger south facing windows and a largely white or light grey interior to enhance the airy feel. Terry has asthma so the couple’s new home is carpet and curtain free with a composite concrete tile oor, thus reducing dust. They are now enjoying their new super insulated “home for life” set amongst the trees with views of their much loved park.
Finding an inner city site which feels like it
is in a woodland setting is rare. This proved to be an exciting design challenge and gave us a great opportunity to create a home which was distinctive, striking and integrated with a unique landscape setting.
– George, Director of Architecture