Welcome to our 'Grand Design', a mix
of innovation and contemporary design in a historic envelope.
the original idea to completion our dream home took only two
to realise. Building work began in May 2002 and only seven months
later we were celebrating a family Christmas in our circa. 1840's
threshing barn. The aim was to live in a home whose historic
roots were not disguised but complemented by the sculpted forms
living spaces placed within it.
The barn now has
all the futuristic capabilities of the most modern home. It is
'future proofed' with lighting, computers, TV, sound, heating
and air quality all networked. We even have our own intranet!
From the onset we
realised it had the potential to be a complicated build; the barn
is a listed building on green belt land and in an area of outstanding
natural beauty. Planning consent carried with it a strict requirement
for an archeological watching brief (and to keep a look out for
Saxon remains we think!) We even had to submit detailed plans
of the future garden landscaping prior to actually gaining planning
Despite our passion
for technology we are committed to an organic and chemical-free
lifestyle, which proved testing when sourcing appropriate materials
such as paints, wood treatments and carpets. Many products still
only come via UK distributors from other European countries -
why are we not investing in this area we kept asking? We also
decided to limit our use of processed water and installed a rainwater
harvesting system; renamed The Yellow Submarine!
The aim of this
website is to try and help others who might be treading a similar
path; converting a barn/listed building. Told mainly in pictures
you will see the complete life of the project and the many people,
whose teamwork and determination to succeed produced this wonderful
You will find details
of all our suppliers indicating where we went for those all-important
materials, technology and professional advice and skills. We would
like to thank all those involved.
Philip and Angela