Making a constructing inside a constructing in Northamptonshire

Making a constructing inside a constructing was not the imaginative and prescient of British householders who wished to renovate their dwelling with a brand new addition.

However stone ruins relationship again to the sixteenth century on the property in Northamptonshire, 120 kilometres northwest of London, captured the creativeness of their architect.

The Parchment Works redevelopment includes the walls of the 16th-century parchment factory, a cattle shed and Victorian home.

“Initially the consumer wished to demolish the smash — a former parchment manufacturing facility — to make manner for a brand-new extension,” says Will Gamble who designed what turned an award-winning construction.

“As soon as they might visualize it, they bought on board and the idea of ‘constructing a constructing inside a constructing’ turned the driving design precept behind the complete scheme — with a robust emphasis on re-use,” he provides.

That concerned inserting two new constructions inside the stone-and-masonry ruins, and a heritage cattle shed on the home, whereas on the similar time creating a contemporary residing area on the household’s Victorian-era dwelling.

The dining area blends a big modern window and new oak flooring with historic stone walls and wooden ceiling beams.

Named Parchment Works, the renovated residences now has 3,035 sq. ft of residing area. On the primary flooring there are two formal reception areas and a big open-concept residing, kitchen and eating space to the rear. Upstairs, three double bedrooms and a shared toilet occupy the entrance of the second flooring. On the rear is the big principal bed room with an ensuite, plus a roof terrace overlooking the yard.

Whereas leaving a number of the one-metre-thick smash partitions untouched by the renovation, the brand new addition’s design consists of glass, reclaimed stone, reclaimed brick, Corten metal externally and limewashed stone, oak and stone flooring on the inside.

The Parchment Works took 4 years to design and construct and was accomplished in 2019. It has acquired quite a few awards together with the winner of the British Houses Awards Dwelling Extension of the Yr, 2020.

A support beam and wooden ceiling of the original cattle shed juxtapose with the contemporary design of the kitchen.

Will Gamble, of Will Gamble Architects in London, solutions a number of questions on Parchment Works:

What have been the most important challenges within the undertaking?

Working inside the constraints of the smash. It was very troublesome to create an area that labored for our consumer while additionally being sympathetic to the historic construction. In the long run, this design problem made for a really wealthy and rewarding undertaking.

The stone walls were re-pointed and washed in lime, and a concrete ledge at the base of the walls acts as skirting for the timber floor.

How did you mix the previous and the brand new?

We tried to preserve as a lot of the historic cloth of the constructing as attainable, exposing the prevailing construction of the constructing with a view to rejoice its previous.

The place we needed to introduce new elements, we used light-weight and modern supplies to intentionally juxtapose the previous elements in order to not compete with the historic construction however to rejoice it. This was predominately achieved by means of floor-to-ceiling glass and placing bands of Corten metal that additionally reference the positioning’s industrial previous as a parchment paper manufacturing facility.

The modern family room, open to the kitchen and dining areas, looks out onto the historic ruins and expanse of lawn.

Did it’s important to do any work on the ruins?

We needed to make the ruined partitions good in elements — a number of the stonework had been broken by frost, so the broken stones have been chopped out and changed with new ones. We additionally repointed the partitions to provide them energy.

What sustainable options are there?

The extension was built to include upcycled materials found on the site that help it blend with the older structures.

The undertaking is all about re-use which we consider is essentially the most sustainable type of improvement. We tried to re-use as a lot of this current constructing cloth as attainable, together with upcycling oak beams and constructing supplies discovered on the positioning.

The flat roof additionally harvests rainwater that’s saved in a stone bathtub which was as soon as used to clean the hides that made the parchment paper. The harvested rainwater is then used to irrigate the backyard.

Georgie Binks is a Toronto-based author and a contract contributor for the Star. Attain her at


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