Originally built as a coaching stagepost in the 1750s this elegant building was used as a Post Office before being converted into a family home. This history of uses has resulted in a complex arrangement of rooms, focused toward, and accessed from, a busy road to the north. The new works rebalance the plan, re-orientating the house towards the rear, to reduce the impact of the traffic and harness the southerly aspect. The design provides the family with a new series of light-filled spaces facing the garden, which blur the relationship between inside and outside. The linear extension runs parallel to the garden, morphing along its length to respond to the existing physical context to provide a variety of spaces and uses – kitchen, dining, covered external cooking, walled garden, and entrance. The new structure respects the original form and integrity of the house. The use of timber as the predominant material gives the architecture a physical consistency and provides coherence with the existing house and the neighboring boatyard structures. The original masonry wall enclosing the garden has been preserved and integrated into the new composition. At the heart of the garden, the historical grapevine has been retained and knitted in the new structure.
Photography: Ben Tynegate