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Hambury Bottom, Lulworth Cove

This magnificent seaside cottage, offering 4 storeys of exquisite modern living, occupies a commanding position overlooking the beautiful oyster-shaped Lulworth Cove. Instrumental in ensuring there was adequate ventilation as well as natural daylight in the accommodation that is housed within the void of this window-less thatched roof, were four deluxe rooflights from Glazing Vision. Products ranged from the fixed Flushglaze rooflight to the electrically hinged VisionVent Solo and SkyHatch rooflights, fitted with bespoke black-out blinds.

Approached by private road, this new 10 bedroom property, complete with stunning indoor pool and gym, is, as the architects RB Studio proudly describe, “ a marriage of traditional and contemporary detailing”.

The planning stage and thatched roof requirements

Indeed, keeping a thatched roof was an integral part of RB Studio’s intent, and a stipulation set down by the Planning Department. Options to incorporate dormer windows or a mansard roof were rejected by Planning so the architects settled on an unusual design, namely a central flat roof with a thatched roof perimeter. Having never designed a property with a thatched roof before, the architects sought guidance from a local thatching specialist, Rod Miller, who also recommended a special nano coating to them. This would be applied to the thatch to enable the thatch to shed water quickly and to inhibit the growth of moss and lichens. This type of treatment was prevalent in the Netherlands, and Miller was convinced of the value of its application for the Hambury Bottom house.

Once planning consent was granted, RB Studio appointed specialist building contractor, Matrod Frampton from neighbouring Wimborne, to undertake the construction of this property as complex engineering solutions were required to address the downward fall of the site, and excavate a basin for the intended indoor pool. The build was finally completed in late 2017.

Architectural challenges of implementing natural daylight

Assigning the second floor bedrooms to the void of the thatched roof presented a number of unique challenges to the architects. With its lack of windows the roof offered no source of natural daylight so the bedrooms and ensuite bathrooms would be reliant upon the installation of artificial lights. This was far from ideal. In addition, there would be no natural ventilation on this upper floor, which was hardly conducive to the creation of a healthy and relaxing sleeping environment. Furthermore, the local parish council, keen to ensure that its dark skies policy was respected, and concerned about potential light pollution, had raised strong objections to the provision and siting of glazing in the roof.

The solution put forward by the architects was for a series of rooflights to be installed in the central, flat part of the roof. Having specified Glazing Vision’s products on previous projects, the architects were aware that the company not only offered a comprehensive range of rooflights to suit different applications but also, and crucially, that it could manufacture to bespoke sizes. They were confident that the Glazing Vision rooflights would meet the exacting requirements at Hambury Bottom.

To ensure that there was daylight available in all 3 bedrooms on the second floor, a combination of Glazing Vision rooflights were installed, each measuring 1270mm x 1270mm. In 2 of the bedrooms there was an electrically hinged VisionVent solo (vent only) rooflight, whilst in the third bedroom there was an electrically hinged SkyHatch roof access rooflight. Common to all three rooflights was the slate grey exterior finish, designed to blend with the dark grey single membrane roof, and the powder-coated pure white finish (RAL9010) required by the architects for the minimalist internal framework in order to reduce the visual impact and ensure that the rooflights complimented the interior décor of the bedrooms.

To find out more about daylight considerations for your next project, contact us today

Glazing Vision are the technical experts in the design, manufacture and supply of precision engineered, architectural rooflights for residential and commercial buildings.

Their rooflight design ethos is to ‘minimise framework – maximise daylight’. Glazing Vision’s designs are both elegant and sophisticated, meeting thermal and performance criteria that are often unique to the location or environment of the rooflight.

Glazing Vision carry out installations either through their in-house installers or via a network of glazing installation specialists. Available at any location across the UK, their installation teams have even travelled as far as America to install bespoke rooflights into incredible buildings.