Stone Cottage, Wirral

Client testimonial:

‘’The attention to detail, quality of design and client support were the key aspects of Cass’ service that has provided us with our ideal home.’’

Professor Charles Kingsland

Stone Cottage

Built within an extensive woodland garden, probably in the 1930’s, this cottage had seen better times and in recent years had been gradually enveloped by the surrounding wood.
Though well-proportioned, the design and layout of the cottage failed to respond either to its aspect or the context of the woodland setting, the internal planning was awkward and the environmental performance was very poor.

Though the exterior had been much altered, the interior contained several modest but delightful features. Our objective was to better reveal these hidden features whilst also resolving the internal layout and aspect within a newly restructured, more site-responsive and energy-efficient envelope. Crucially, we sought to improve and clarify the connection of the cottage with its fine woodland setting.

The scheme was conceived as a series of distinct internal and external spaces, each with a particular purpose and pattern of use in mind, shaped and separated by layout, structure and planting but unified by connecting views and movement lines and a common palette of materials.

The new extension containing the kitchen, dining area and master bedroom suite are perceived as ‘morning’ spaces and are designed to optimise the benefit of the early sun and the outlook across the gardens. The ‘evening’ rooms, a reconfigured snug and new study, are located on the west side of the house, looking out over the rear gardens and pond, offering privacy, quiet and reflection.

The extension is set back from the existing house and the massing has been broken down to maintain the predominance of the original cottage and provide clear differentiation between the old and the new.

The concept of simple detailing using a limited range of high quality materials, apparent in the original cottage interior, has been re-established and extended across the new additions.  Through-colour render, high quality oak windows, doors and joinery and external components in ‘green’ oak serve to unite the various elements into a single composition.

Services provided: Architecture, Planning, Landscape Architecture.

• Negotiated with local authority to maximise permissible extension to 50% of original floor area
• Building Regulations consent
• Remodelled existing cottage, repositioning the entrance and opening up the circulation core.
• Re-organised external garden spaces to bring order and improve the setting for house.
• Extensive replanting and tree maintenance.
• New oak-framed garage, workshop and woodstore.
• Existing cottage fully insulated externally.
• Appointed for full service, from conceptual design to completion on site.