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Pocketmags Digital Magazines
Pocketmags Digital Magazines


Taking on the challenging project to transform a tired 1920s detached house into a classy modern home has been no mean achievement for Paul and Nikki Blunden

When Paul and Nikki Blunden embarked on renovating an uninspiring 1920s detached property in Berkshire, they realised there might be a few obstacles along the way. But the biggest test they faced was preventing the shell of their new house from falling down. “The project involved gutting the entire interior, leaving just the front and side walls, plus two thirds of the roof”, says Paul. “At one point, the structure was held up with Acrow props while we waited for the steels, the delivery of which was delayed. The site manager was worried he’d arrive on site one morning to find a pile of rubble – mind you, he didn’t tell us that until the supports had been installed, thank goodness!”

Steelwork was essential in the construction due to the scale of the unrestricted space required to achieve the Blundens’ goal of open-plan living. “We wanted to retain the 1920s feel of the property, so used brick and block to match the remaining exterior walls; but inside our vision was to make it contemporary with lots of open space and natural light”, says Nikki, adding that it was the plot size and location that initially attracted them.

Creating a vision

The Blundens lived a mile away but always wanted to be in Holyport Village, a picturesque setting two miles south of Maidenhead. When they discovered this house was on the market, they snapped it up – although at one point it looked like they had lost the property. “When the purchase fell through initially we looked around the village and a little further afield but couldn’t find anything we liked”, says Paul, who was relieved the building came back on the market shortly after.

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About Build It

What's inside the April 2018 edition of Build It magazine: - Stunning eco home on a heritage plot (page 22) - Glazed doors design ideas (page 64) - Renovating for profit (page 71) - Garage design options (page 74) - Complete guide to building with timber (page 81) - How to get planning on your garden (page 110) - Window cost guide (page 117) ... and much more!