Coppin Dockray Architects
Structural Engineering Consultant
2015, The Daily Telegraph Homebuilding & Renovating Awards, Best Renovation
2015, AJ Retrofit Awards, House Below £250k (shortlisted)
2016, RIBA House of the Year (longlisted)
2016, RIBA South West Small Project of the Year
2016, RIBA Regional Award
2016, The Wood Awards, Private category (shortlisted)
2016, Sunday Times British Home Awards, One-Off House or Extension up to 2,500 ft2 (shortlisted)
This renovation and extension of a rural house in Wiltshire updated and improved an architecturally significant modernist house. The project provided an opportunity to work on two buildings on the same site by two different, notable architects of the twentieth century.
The main house was originally designed in 1964 by David Levitt (for Rigby), a partner in the office of a major structural engineering firm who would later go on to form Levitt Bernstein Associates. The house is perched on the sloping site with a Douglas fir timber-framed and glass façade. The house has a projecting, single plane of roof skimming over the building that mirrors the slope of the ground.
With wind whistling through gaps in the eaves and chill emanating from the brick floors, the house was in need of attention to make it habitable in all seasons. Work focused on repairing and preserving the original structure while also improving the building’s thermal performance. The refurbishment achieved an 80% reduction in the house’s annual carbon emissions through the renovations, while keeping its architectural heritage intact.
“We were able to bring this project into the twenty-first century while keeping its architectural heritage and purity intact.”
– Toby Maclean, Entuitive
The studio was originally designed by Alison and Peter Smithson for Rigby and was a stone building that was half buried in the hillside of the sloping site. The building was somewhat derelict when purchased by the current owner. It was cold and damp with narrow, slit windows in the thick Somerset stone walls that were reminiscent of a fortification. While perhaps cool on a summer’s day, it was distinctly bone-chilling at other times.
Additional space was carved out of the hill to allow the studio to be extended. The interior space was opened up by removing walls. More openings were made in the external walls and roof, including large panes of frameless glass in some areas, to encourage in the sun. The renovation made the studio a space to enjoy in all seasons and now acts as a guest room and study.
Learn more about the project from a profile on the house by The Telegraph here.