CHELSHAM ROAD | CLAPHAM
The property, a handsome detached two storey house which had an existing shallow basement that needed attention. There is a drop across the site from front to back and the large kitchen area had a poor connection to the garden to the rear down a winding stair leading to a raised timber deck and then down to the playroom in the basement.
The challenge was improving the connection of the house to the garden; both from the basement and the ground floor and make better use of the basement area. We lowered the basement floor by about a metre and cleared out most of the internal walls to allow us to totally reconfigure the space to form a better proportioned family room – leading to the garden behind via a small dropped patio and up generous stairs. This allows much more light into the space. There is also a space room / study, bathroom, utility and plantroom / store. The stair to the basement was reconfigured and widened as it went down. By cladding it in oak it forms the transition between the more traditional entrance hall and contemporary feel in the basement.
We demolished the timber deck and replaced it with a new patio and garden room at garden level. The garden room is designed to cleverly deal with the change in level from the kitchen to the garden down generous stairs though the use of the part-hipped roof form taken from the main house. We added large champagne coloured metallic bi-fold and sliding doors to bath the place with light and allow the garden room to open directly and unimpeded onto the patio and garden beyond. We clad the room in zinc as a modern interpretation to the slate roofing and by using the reclaimed Yellow London Stock bricks with contemporary detailing to pick up elements of the Victorian detailing on the house. The form of the extension ensures that it does not dominate while respecting the host building. The paving from the patio wraps around the extension and down the stairs to the lower patio and up to the side alley way. It is also continued into the garden room with a matching stone so that the garden room is part of the garden.
Three long slender windows allow views out the side of the extension and create dramatic strips of light while breaking up the side wall as it descends into the light well.
We carefully chose a palette of materials that respect the host building but are in themselves modern, crisp and fresh.