Our 1930’s home renovation has been gaining momentum ever since we moved in seven months ago. We are the proud second owners who are respectfully modernising it while retaining its Art Deco qualities. The house is in Wiltshire, land of the white horse, sparse open fields and the convenience of Bath and Stonehenge nearby for shopping and culture.
The kitchen extension has almost finished. It’s risen from nothing to become the hub of the house, in a space that visitors don’t even know exists until they peer around the corner of our L-shaped lounge.
But first, let me just take you a step back, to give you an idea of how this building looked in the first place…
Before the kitchen extension
With the new extension
The original kitchen was a modest lean-to coal shed, accessed by a small separate dining room. Sometime in the 1960s – when the house underwent its own stair and door-ply-covering revival – a two-meter extension was added to the lounge at the back of the house. This was separate to the coal shed kitchen. To stay within the limitations of permitted development, we decided to keep things simple and add an extra meter to the existing dimensions gaining more than enough space for the open plan kitchen-diner of our dreams.
My husband who is more than a handyman, undertook the entire project himself, from demolishing both back sections, bricking, plumbing and fitting the kitchen – using his previous experience and learning from professionals on YouTube and DIY books as he went. In just six months – under the scrutinous eyes of the town hall planning department – he had completed a huge extension, alone.
After the old extension had been demolished
The extension rebuilt before the roof and windows
Last week our building regulations man from the council turned up wearing his hi-vis neon jacket. He buzzed with enthusiasm around the kitchen “You’re actually using it!” he chuffed. He looked up at the skylights and beamed.
“And it’s warm” I exaggerated to keep his enthusiasm flowing.
“Well that’s because of the insulation. There are guidelines for a reason you know!” he half joked. But I knew he was right, it was the warmest most insulated part of the house.
He briefly checked outside, nodding his approval with some last minute suggestions regarding the rendering and dashed out the front door, before coming back and planting a kiss on my cheek as he shook my hand. The next day – we were rewarded with our approved planning certificate – which was a huge relief.
There is still a lot to finish, the rest of the house for one thing as well as the dining room. But up until this point I had struggled to find contentment and now I realise it was just a matter of being patient. A space that I had imagined my family to come together in, had finally arrived and now I can sit at our dining table, and look up through the skylights and thank my lucky stars we undertook such a project.
The inside of the new extension
You can follow more of Georgina’s renovation blog on her Rise of the Roost page