Case Study of the Month - July
Country House in Hampshire
Land Cost: £850,000 with existing bungalow
Build Cost: £715,000
Current Value: £2.1m+
It was in the late 90s when Debbie and Peter first came across Potton and fell in love with the Milchester from the Rectory range. “It was just the style of house we liked and we both thought would suit us perfectly” said Debbie.
Unfortunately it was not to be, and after looking at number of plots and a new build in Surrey, they finally came across an original gate house that resembled the Queen Anne style of the Rectory, and although it needed quite a bit of refurbishment work to bring it up to the standard, the couple decided to go ahead and buy it.
“The truth is” says Peter “in all the houses that we had previously owned, there was always something that didn’t suit us or something we had to either compromise with or carry out alterations to suit.”
So while living in the gate house they received an over the market value offer from the owner of the main house and the country estate on which their gatehouse stood. “We then decided that the offer was far too good to refuse and started on the trail of land finding!”
Once again this was to take almost a year until a contact involved with land sourcing told them about an opportunity that had come up in the Hampshire area.
The plot wasn’t actually in the part of Hampshire that the couple would have preferred to live in, but was in a beautiful location and had planning to extend an existing bungalow.
The couple then decided to proceed with the purchase of the plot but were not really interested in extending the bungalow as this would have meant another time they would have to compromise on what they actually wanted.
The couple later discovered that there had previously been 3 separate applications on the bungalow, 2 to extend and 1 to demolish and rebuild, which was initially turned down, but later over turned on appeal. The latter approval was for a 4,000 sqft house.
In 2011 Debbie and Peter moved into the bungalow and started to attend various self build exhibitions where they met Sean Adams on the Potton stand and liked the idea of working with him to come up with a design that would suit both them and the plot.
“What we ended up with was a complete hybrid from Potton” said Peter “we took elements from both the Heritage post and beam construction and from the Queen Anne styled design and finished up with something more akin to the Shire range!”
The couple virtually designed the house from the inside out. They raised the storey height and prepared the space in the roof for any future expansion which would provide a 6th and 7th bedroom.
The first design was T shaped but when there was an objection raised locally, Sean suggested that the garage should be moved, and began negotiations with the planners and prepared the design statement which was eventually accepted by the authority.
"We visited the Potton Show Centre at St Neots more than once and spent time looking at the show houses and also visited the Wickhambrook barn in its various stages of construction – this latter was very helpful in being able to see the construction method and how it differs from a normal brick build."
The project finally began in November 2012 and the couple were able to live in the original bungalow on site during the build.
"Regarding input from Potton, there was a considerable amount and all testament to
Sean Adams patience in working with us as we took a 1 ½ storey design with internal
posts and turned it into a full 2 storey property without compromising the original
Before and After