The Courtyard




Here's a home just like the ones you're likely to see on Grand Designs, only this one was built on time and on budget. For several years, our clients had wanted to build a new home on this site in the old market town of Frome in Somerset. However, their planning applications were repeatedly rejected by the council because the plot is adjacent to a listed building. A number of applications were made featuring architectural plans for a building sympathetic to the area, but the planning department just didn't like them.

Getting planning permission

So Carter Hughes Davies tried a different route, and our architects drew up plans for a modernist dream home that included a range of environmentally friendly features. This was granted planning permission at the first time of asking - it seems the contrast is what they were looking for.

With planning permission in place, the designs were refined. The owners wanted bespoke doorways – larger than normal – as well as extra high ceilings. A 400 square metre house was constructed, maintaining the important tree cover and the good relationship with the neighbours in their listed building. The style is modern and crisp using render with cedar panels, and large panes of glass with aluminium colour coated frames. The design successfully uses the slope of the ground to fully benefit from the remarkable vistas from this hill-top site, formerly used as a paddock for horses.

Sustainable home design

On top of the striking, modern structure, the walls and roof have a superinsulated design, with a low carbon footprint thanks to its solar panels, air source heat pump and low temperature underfloor heating. Large panels of specialist energy saving glass on the south elevations warm the building using the sun in the winter, but large overhangs shade the glazing during summer. The home's materials were also eco-friendly, including sustainably sourced timber and the use of recycled materials.

To see this project through from plans to completion, we delivered a full service from initial site survey through to architectural plans, and project management including contract administration between the client and the builders. Who wouldn't want to live in a house like this?