Our homeowner clients wanted to design ground-floor and first-floor extensions for more space and a better quality of life. They wanted to open up their ground-floor layout and add a bathroom upstairs next to the first-floor bedroom. Their goal was to achieve an open-plan living space, sleek interior design and an upstairs bathroom through smart space planning solutions for their small mid-terraced house.
We had to gain planning permission for both the ground-floor extension and first-floor rear extension and external alterations to the rear facade of the terraced house – all in an area where the council has strong views about appropriate design – with planning officers initially opposed to the placement of Crittall-style doors and windows.
One way to look at the situation would have been to hear the client's wishes and the council heritage officer's priorities and treat these two views as being in conflict with each other. Another approach, the one we took, was to work out how we could put together a design and a planning case that left everyone satisfied.
The key to it all was those Crittall-style windows and doors. They aren't, it's true, Victorian. But nor are they super-contemporary, and therefore we knew that the council would realise that they would not become instantly out-of-date. The planning department looked at our designs, and agreed that the result would work well in the context.
It was when construction was completed that it became clear how all well all the elements of the design functioned in real life. We don't need to say much here – just look at the photos. But we will say is that is one of our favourites of the many projects our team has ever worked on.
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