Lucas Hickman Smith
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The Wood House, Wymondham


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This contemporary urban ‘eco-home’ respects its Conservation Area context without resorting to pastiche, and was designed with sustainability in mind for reduced running costs.

– South Norfolk Design Award

‘We were impressed with the way in which the design responded to its site using traditional forms and materials without copying the historic architectural details of neighbouring buildings…it is a wonderful example of great design.’ (Cllr Colin Foulger, Chair of Judging Panel, South Norfolk Design Awards 2011)

Designed to be ‘future-proof’ for its owners, a retired couple, the house exploits an existing storey-height bank on the tight site to provide single-storey living at first floor – flowing open-plan kitchen, dining, living room, master-bedroom with en-suite wet-room and a small, manageable garden. This main floor is accessed by lift from the ground floor entrance lobby and under-croft parking built into the bank. A galleried stair up from first to second floor creates a double-height space over the dining area and gives access to three further bedrooms.

The house uses traditional forms and materials to create a ‘resonance’ with its historic surroundings, but refuses to ape its historic neighbours. This is a clearly contemporary addition to the Conservation Area.

A full range of energy-saving features are included for reduced running costs: a heavily insulated airtight timber-framed shell with triple glazed windows, whole house-ventilation with heat-recovery, low energy light-fittings, rainwater harvesting for WC-flushing and roof-integrated solar-thermal panels.

Designed by Matt Wood of Lucas Hickman Smith with detailed design by Andy Love.

Photo credit: Jim Stephenson, www.clickclickjim.com

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