The ground floor of this Victorian/Edwardian turn of the century building is substantial, but was divided up into small dark rooms as it had been rented out as a separate apartment. The walls were in unusual places, with some previous structural alterations and left a poorly lit and ‘rabbits’ warren of a ground floor.

The owners of the upstairs duplex flat secured the purchase of the ground floor and the brief was to convert both back into a single large family home. A previous project at the upstairs flat had raised the ceiling in the kitchen and improved the landing space. This was to become a bedroom space and laundry functions.

The goal for the ground floor was to open it up as semi-open plan and make better use of the garden, returning the whole building into a family home. The small ‘side return’ space in the garden was very long and narrow, and darker than most being surrounded by tall buildings and facing north. It was under-utilised and became a bit of a wasted space. Several options for how it could be better utilised culminated in the glazed extension as seen here.

The building has a very deep/long floor plan and so maintaining light into the centre of the building was crucial to realising the design. The resulting centre space is now a practical transition space between the front lounge or snug, and the rear kitchen-dining-living space. It functions as a central hub for the ground floor with access to a new wc under the stairs and includes a family piano, shelving, children’s toys and a space for coats and shoes. This space allows the rear room to be light and airy and still function well as a clean, functional and social space.

The former flat’s diving walls were removed, and a new insulated floor with underfloor heating and new drainage was laid to form a single enlarged rear space. A huge new beam and corner column allow the whole rear section of the house to function as one room. A triple glazed roof and new insulated boundary wall fills what was the under-used narrow strip of garden.

  • Service: Planning and detailed construction design
  • Budget: £150-200K
  • Scale: 75m2 of works
Before Photos
Project Drawings

The rooms at the front of the building were reinstated to the original sizes and shapes with new flooring, decoration and electrics. Upstairs a new ensuite and door arrangement improves the bedroom provisions. The previous TSA project from years before had opened up the first floor flat’s kitchen and created a small utility and wc. Now the building has been reinstated as a single dwelling, these were altered to form bedroom and laundry spaces that benefit from height and daylight.