The property owners wanted to expand their living space by extending into the underused side-return and creating a combined kitchen & dining room. They also wanted to investigate whether the loft or the basement could be used to increase the floor area of their fairly compact family home.
The property is a small two storey grade 2 listed terraced house with a two storey outrigger built in the early 19th century, located in the centre of Brighton. The house fronts directly on to the pavement and to the rear is a small patio/garden area. The property has an original basement and loft space above the pitched roof. The basement has the potential to provide an additional WC and storage but the loft does not have adequate height for any form of conversion.
The property is listed and any works needed both Listed Building Consent and planning approval.
The side-return enclosed by two-storey high walls on three sides gave the best opportunity to increase the ground floor area. Extending into the side-return would utilise underused space, and would minimise the impact upon the historic fabric of the property and on the neighbours.
A single storey flat-roof extension was constructed in the side-return and the wall opened up between the extension and the existing kitchen creating a combined kitchen & dining room. The flat roof of the extension sits behind a parapet wall, which mirrors the original parapets at the front and back of the house. A warm roof provides the best insulation and avoids the need for cross ventilation. To the rear timber bi-folding doors open out on to the patio and timber double hung sliding sashes replace existing casement windows.
The materials for the walls and the new fenestration match that in the original building. The extension has been set back from the corner of the outshot enabling the original form of the house to read by future generations. Internal piers have been left between the new extension and the old kitchen allowing the original structure to be easily understood.
The extension makes excellent use of the unused side-return. It works well as part of and is integral to the existing house but, it respects the original structure and it can be read as an addition to the historic building. The bi-folding doors provide direct access to the rear patio whilst blurring the distinction between the inside and the outside.
Internally, a stainless steel work-surface links the old and new, it provides a transition space from the kitchen to the dining area and it offers a multi-purpose counter.
The extension has created an additional 8 sq. m. of living space in a house where space was at a premium. Completion of the extension has revolutionised how the owners use the house. They now spend most of their time in the new kitchen/dining room making the most of their additional space and enjoying the the afternoon sunlight flooding in through the new doors and window.