Detached Low Energy House with Annex at Kings Somborne, Hampshire

The house replaces an existing bungalow on the site which no longer meets modern space or construction standards. The replacement is considerably larger than the existing and incorporates an Annex for the parents as well as a 4 bedroom house.

In order to reduce the mass of the house the three elements of the layout, the main house, the annex and the shared kitchen living room, are identified by the different use of external wall materials. The annex and rear of the main house at ground floor level which is built into the slope are faced in brickwork to provide a protective skin. The main house is finished in render and the shared zone in timber boarding. All sit under a cranked roof with the differing angles to suit the functions.

The house is designed with the option of achieving at least Level 4 of the Code for Sustainable Homes which is considerably above the current building regulation requirements. The main elements of the strategy are to provide a high level of thermal insulation and airtightness of construction with heat recovery whole house ventilation. Windows to the north and east are kept to the minimum practical size whilst those to the south and west are considerably larger to give beneficial solar gain. Because of the potential for summer overheating the windows are to have shading provided by deciduous planting on fixed pergolas. The building will have significant thermal mass and secure night-time ventilation is to be provided. Solar water heating is to be provided on the roof and there is the potential for photovoltaic cells to be added at a later stage when and if the costs justify.

The scheme has received detailed planning approval but is in abeyance awaiting an improvement in the financial climate.

RIBA AECB Architect in the House Architects Registration Board Association of Self-Build Architects