Old Police House

+ Orsett, Essex

We were delighted to be approached by our clients on this project. It is a fantastic turn of the century character home, that as the name suggests was the former village Police Station. Robustly built but full of charm and period detail, we were tasked with revitalising this humble home. Encouraged to embrace the traditional, whilst intervening with the modern to create new family and entertaining spaces. We employed clever design interventions to make best use of existing spaces, whilst tackling the larger extension requirements.

Immediately the existing inefficient conservatory had to go! The ‘Conservatory killers’ strike again. This space was too cold in winter, too hot in summer and as a result was plunged into a permanently artificially shaded arrangement. The floor area was wasted with an undervalued connection to a beautifully mature garden.

Following our strong belief of contrasting old and new, so that each can be celebrated, we prepared a design that looked to capitalise on natural light and the relationship to existing areas of the house, with the development of a unashamedly modern build. Essentially a single story extension to the rear and side, staggered in both depth and height, provides a new kitchen and dinning space. An adjacent smaller linked portion to the rear extends the existing homes lounge space that is linked this to the wider new built form. The original client brief asked for a separate lounge but this would have left the existing space land locked with poor natural light. By extending the space we were able to make a soft connection back to the dining and kitchen space, that whilst not full open plan capitalised on the strengths of the original floor layout. The plan shape of the extension looked to respect neighbours and provide a private breakfast courtyard.

Our choice of materials made in agreement with our clients looked to provide multiple functions. The use of stainless steel was to create a strong modern framed aesthetic, with an extremely thin overhang that appears refined yet strong. Timber clad reveals and soffits add a touch of warmth and intrigue, whilst on the less private elevations to the front of the house and somewhat hidden elevation to the neighbour, brick matching the existing home is used to soften impact and integrate. The smaller extension to the rear required its own identity as to not be completely dominated by the larger kitchen and dining space. For this we chose to use stainless steel exclusively, maintaining the material consistency with the light touch offered the larger space.

All in all the scheme delivers a superb family friendly, overtly modern addition to this beautiful house, affording our clients the space for their family to grow and stay in the village they adore.

Works are due to start on site in early summer 2019.