Potton barn in Northamptonshire

Christine Anderson

Foundations for a New Life

Christine Anderson has built a barn-style home on her former smallholding, building in future-proofing, which will enable her to remain there as she grows older.

Grieving for a spouse might sound like a challenging time to begin a self build project, but for Christine Anderson it proved exactly the distraction she needed. Sitting in the heart of the Northampton smallholding they owned for 15 years, the Old Forge was a small, ugly residential let next door to the home Christine shared with her husband Chas and their grown-up son Charles.

As she walked around the fields of the 21-acre site she knew she didn’t want to leave her home and start afresh somewhere else.

Land Cost:
Already Owned
Build Cost:
Floor Area:
2422 sq ft
It was then she realised that by building a new home right next door to their existing farmhouse, she could retain some of her land and remain in the community while also providing something to focus on.

Self Build Begins

A visit to Potton gave birth to a design which incorporates the light and character displayed in their barn-style home while also reflecting the style of the neighbouring buildings, with red brick and weatherboard façades under a slate roof.

Christine carried out considerable research, reading all the self build magazines, and visiting the National Self Build and Renovation Centre in Swindon and Grand Designs Live at the NEC.

Work on site was delayed to avoid disturbing nesting birds, at which point a local company demolished and cleared the old bungalow. Potton erected the timber frame and carried out second-fix carpentry work, and a project manager was hired to get the house to watertight stage. 
There were plenty of memorable moments during that time. It was so strange seeing the bungalow there one morning and the site being completely clear just days later. And then seeing the timber frame erected in just a few more days, it was phenomenal.

Incorporating Renewable Products

Using the roof of her existing stables, Christine installed a 10kW photovoltaic array, an air source heat pump powers the underfloor heating on the ground floor and a Solar iBoost means any surplus energy generated by the PV panels is used to heat hot water.

Open spaces flow both inside and outside, with the open-plan living, dining and kitchen area and a vaulted hallway on the ground floor, a large wooden double door separating the two spaces.

Two double doors connect the living areas with patios, the garden and seven acres of farmland. A study, wet room and utility room offer further useful areas and also mean the house can be adapted to suit Christine as she grows older. Upstairs, the master suite has a vaulted ceiling and there are three further bedrooms and family bathroom.
as featured in SB&D

As featured in

Christine's self build was featured in SelfBuild & Design magazine.

Read the feature here


Brick and green clad house


Potton Head Office

Eltisley Road

Great Gransden


SG19 3AR

441767 676400

We use cookies on our website www.potton.co.uk. To find out more about the cookies we use, or to change your cookie preferences i.e. to remove your consent to our use of certain categories of cookies, please visit our Cookie Policy & Control page.

Please click “Accept and close” to accept the use of cookies on our website. If you do not click “Accept and close” but continue to use this website: you thereby consent to the use of all Potton cookies and third party cookies for the purposes of improving performance, improving functionality and audience measurement, in accordance with the terms laid out in our Cookie Policy & Control page; and we will assume that you have read and understood our Cookie Policy & Control page.