This project has been a great joy but also a huge challenge. The buildings, grange, house and the ancient foure, (bread oven) were acquired with the intention of increasing the living space of the principle house.We then found that in fact very recently the Batiments de France along with the Marie had imposed a protection order on a small area which included the project.
We then were forced to patiently prepare and present plan after plan until we were fortunately able to gain the Permis de Construire, a huge relief for all those concerned. Certain demands were made; one of which was to maintain the same stone façade for the extension.
Through the macon we bought an old ruin not too far away which was built in the same local grey limestone and which also gave us some stunning corner stones along with one or two lintels. The structure was then demolished and the stone brought to the site. The new build as seen from the photos is constructed with brick, insulation and then stone. All the window and door surrounds were specially prepared by a local stone macon; as the terrace was also extended, the Macon crafted another stone pillar.
The client who fortunately enjoys a real passion for her batiment chose to have a stone staircase descending from the kitchen/salon to the bureau; in fact stone is not any more expensive than a good wooden staircase and in this case looks fantastic.
It was intended to use some of the old beams and place them in the new build, however, we found that the sections which had been buried in the walls were rotten from the seepage of water over the centuries, the result was all the roof structure was changed and new oak beams installed.
The client decided to use natural fibre insulation for walls and the roof; in this case hemp was installed, slightly more expensive, certainly healthier and very green!!!
The major concept of the renovation was to remove the gable so as to create one long open space for the salon, dining area and kitchen, the separation in fact being the fire place and hood which was built by a local artisan.
The balustrade is also designed in raw steel and glass, the glass for the feeling of space but also to marry in with the tables and lights.
In fact, here we have a wonderful meeting of wood, stone floors and steel, the marriage presenting a living space both very modern, user friendly and unique. I love it.
Due to the fact that an air to water heat exchanger with under-floor heating was designed there is no fear of cold spots, one of the many beauties of this form of heat is that the walls are left free.
There were various concerns marrying the old house to the new build , however, all was accomplished invariably giving more character to the space concerned.
It was with a feeling of pleasure and pride when I was able to hand over this house which I must admit I have learnt a great deal from.