We’re delighted to share details of a recent Planning consent achieved in collaboration with Heritage Consultants, Donald Insall Associates, and Oxford & Country Planning, for an exceptional Grade II listed country house, located on the outskirts of a notable waterside village in South Oxfordshire.
The property, originally built in 1905 in a distinctly French chateau style, was designed by renowned British architect, Edward P Warren as his private residence. Generous is size, sitting at 620sqm, and with a rich history of hosting artists, writers, and socialites – including members of the Bloomsbury Group – it is set to undergo a significant series of renovation and extension works, preserving its historical charm, while ushering in essential modern updates, and an additional 257sqm of living space.
With notable heritage significance, it was appropriate for an extensive and detailed analysis of the building’s past to be undertaken, to shape and strengthen our approach, helping demonstrate that the proposals – where the overarching design philosophy focuses on restoring and enhancing the original features and functionality with minimal impact on the building fabric – represent a significant improvement to the existing design.
The consented works – which seek to work subserviently with the existing building, while achieving a significant increase in square footage – in the main, target areas modified in 1936 and 1985, addressing the shortcomings of former extensions and alterations, while offering rational design solutions to meet the needs of the current owner.
Works include two new two-storey extensions, one to the front and the second to the rear, commensurate in scale and massing - introducing a uniform appearance that emulates the original architectural features. An existing single-storey flat roof ground floor extension at the rear is replaced with a new sympathetically designed space, in addition to a large garage with accommodation above, on approach. Among other internal works, the first-floor layout is rationalised to create bedroom, dressing room and bathroom accommodation that align with the external aesthetics.
Throughout, the architectural language follows simple, well-mannered traditional proportions taking reference from the original façade. This, together with the proposed restorations and sympathetic material palette, safeguard the historical integrity of the original building, while introducing a sense of chronology and organic development, enhancing the Grade II Listed status, and ensuring the building’s longevity for future generations.