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Greystones Cottage, Stow on the Wold

250 year-old allotment worker’s cottage in AONB reimagined

Maximising difficult space within planning constraints


Energy-efficient retrofit, without sacrifice of character or quality

Greystones Cottage was a traditional one up, one down stone cottage in the heart of Stow on the Wold, build around 1780 for allotment workers and combined with another cottage in the 19th Century. The house had suffered from decades of neglect and odd interventions, before being brough back to life.  Our design brought to life a transformation into a modern traditional home, and sought to tackle energy inefficiencies, rationalise the layout to maximise space and storage, and extend to addition living space. 

The energy efficiency of the home was drastically increased, adding significant insulation throughout, while ensuring that the character of the building - provided through exposed timber beams and stone walls - was retained. The garden was reduced through extending, however the design ensured that it became part of the house, with use of bifold doors, lighting and careful planning of the garden ensuring space felt part of it even on dark winter evenings. 

No space was left unused, with a downstairs toilet added, storage captured in every possible location to ensure that day to day clutter could be removed, and historic alcoves opportunities for anything from the wc sink to bookshelves. 

The extension matched materials and form, but created a diminutive form, using oak lintels and jumper stones to create traditional, rather than pastiche quoins. Every opportunity was made to plan and integrate the design, illustrated through features such as an integral cat flap, with its own timber lintel. 

The result is a slick 21st Century family home which through quirks and character still tells the story of its 250 year past, and the families which lived in it previously, while providing a comfortable and energy efficient home. 

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