This project presented a few challenges to maximise the possible space in the house and remain on a very tight budget and limited construction methods. A family member acted as main contractor, and brought in various sub-contractor trades to complete different sections. This meant they had to take on the H&S and management roles, but were able to absorb lots of the overheads and build to a low overall price.

The build also utilised existing window and external doors salvaged from the family member’s own demolition project to further keep costs down. This came with architectural difficulties in getting a balanced proportion, and desired spaces while making use of as many existing windows as possible. Only a couple of new windows and the bi-folds were needed to be purchased in the end. Shrewd decisions on kitchens, finishes and fixtures, including utilising 2nd hand utility cabinetry, further enabled the project to come in on budget.

The up-close finish and some materials are not as high-end as one may come to expect from architect-led schemes with main contractors, but the overall impact and spatial layout certainly performs, testament to good sensible design and an involved client.

The extension includes a rear two-storey extension with open plan kitchen-diner and living space at ground floor and a new master suite at first floor. The extension also wraps around the side, also at two storeys forming a utility at ground floor and a study/spare room off the stairs above. Internally alterations were made to convert the loft space and form a corridor passageway to bypass the formerly walk-through lounge, which has now formed a separate snug space.

  • Service: Planning and outline construction spec
  • Budget: Undisclosed & DIY
  • Scale: Two storey side and rear extension
Before Photos
Project Drawings

The site is within the Conservation Area and so lengthly consultations with planning were necessary to be as persuasive as possible, as such large two storey extensions would not normally be permitted. This involved several roof and massing designs as well as exploratory sketches and a site visit to hone in on an acceptable solution. Outline Sketchup models and sketches over photographs were persuasive tools in the process. In the end the site was determined as being significantly shielded from view that the two storey side extension was acceptable with the design steps that were taken.

Subtle use of colour and the introduction of a pergola softens the appearance, helps with the proportions and shades the south facing doors. The bi-fold doors and pergola blur the inside and outside to maximise the use of the garden spaces.

Since the completion of the project TSA has been involved again to secure planning consent to convert the loft with a dormer window extension. This involved a detailed planning process, needing to justify the proposed dormer within the Conservation Area. An analysis of the local area and buildings, along with considered design secured planning consent. As part of the process a 3 dimensional sunpath model needed to be made on the computer to demonstrate that shade from the proposed dormer would not cause excessive harm to the neighbour’s solar panels. Through use of geo-referenced Sketchup models and careful site survey information, this was possible to be carried out in-house to streamline the process and overall fees.