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Digital Subscriptions > Build It > Aug 2017 > Contemporary package home

Contemporary package home

Won over by the amazing views, the Sawyers took a gamble on being able to knock down the existing bungalow and replace it with a stunning new home
The house is clad in Western Red cedar and maintenance-free acrylic render board. The timber started out orange and has mellowed over time

When they started looking for a project in 2012, Jenny and Julian Sawyer originally had their sights set on a barn or oast house – ideally with a bit of land – that they could convert into a characterful home. “It soon became clear that we wouldn’t be able to find one on a big plot, so I widened our search,” says Jenny. Soon afterwards, they stumbled across a dated bungalow with plenty of land and wide countryside views, which surprised and delighted the couple so much they changed their plans.

Changing tack

Had it not been for the fact Jenny particularly liked the way a friend had renovated their single-storey home, the Sawyers might never have thought to view the four-bedroom chalet bungalow. The property had been built for farm workers in the 1960s and been added to over the years, resulting in a mishmash of rooms – some without heating – and a tiny kitchen with an oil-fired Aga. Outside there was a stable block and a jungle of a garden.

It didn’t look too promising initially, but on further investigation, Jenny began to see why she needed to persuade Julian that they should put in an offer. “Beyond the garden, I could see the whole five-and-a-half acres, which had incredible far-reaching views,” she says. “The plot had the wow factor and I could imagine doors across the back looking out over the landscape.”

Clearly the plot was crying out for a new house – the problem was, there was no planning permission to demolish the bungalow. “We both knew we wouldn’t find a piece of land like this again any time soon, so we took the chance,” Jenny explains. “We decided the bungalow wasn’t so bad that we couldn’t renovate and live here if the planners didn’t give us consent to replace it.”

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About Build It

The August edition of Build It magazine brings you all the inspiration & practical advice you need to complete your home building project on time and on budget, including: • A stunning self-build on a countryside plot (page 20) • 10 way to maximise light and space (page 62) • 7 lightweight cladding options (page 67) • Find out whether triple glazing makes sense (page 79) • How to rewire a period property (page 119) • Discover how to find land with real potential (page 123) … and more!
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