A multipurpose space to satisfy two different interests. The black corrugated workshop is for a talented sculptor and furniture maker and the new siberian larch space is home to a lifetime of books belonging to a historian. Incorporating the existing garage and maximising views of the Wye Valley with a concave window this timber frame garden room gives the wow factor and additional space to the property.
The build incorporates timber ijoists and cellulose insulation to protect the library and projects inside making it a comfortable space to work in all year round. A secret door leads to a smartly tucked away storage area which also connects the existing garage to the new garden room. Warm Siberian larch cladding teamed with black corrugated steel sheets gives a striking contrast to the two working spaces.
We retired a year ago and moved to our present home perched on a steep hillside overlooking the Wye Valley. I had a problem in that there was simply no room in the house for my books and work desk, and the garage needed considerable improvement to provide accommodation for my husband’s studio.
It was our very good fortune to have already seen such impressive work done by Passiframe and there had been no doubt as to whom we would ask for help. So it is that I now have a stunning garden room to house several thousand books and my work desk. A room insulated and proven by the extreme weather of these recent months to be the coolest retreat on the hottest of summer days and a cosy snug in gale and rain. We are confident that winter ice and snow will be shrugged off by the studied care of this construction.
From the very start the talents of all the workers in this team became apparent. I had asked Scott for a box room, big enough to replace the converted freight container that previously housed my books. I was shown elevations and plan of just that, but alongside there was an alternative example where the simplest modification of plan offered instead “modest architecture”, contriving a hugely superior aspect of view from the desk, and a hugely superior structure to look at. I was impressed, and delighted.
The site had to be levelled, and so the skills, efficiency and excellence of the ground works team came into play. The complexities of the situation were challenging but handled with forethought, this phase demanded excavation to a horizontal for the book room, foundation trenches, requisite new drainage channels, and a substantial retaining wall securing the existing garage. Earthworks, concrete infills, base walls, all became apparent with a miraculous tidy finish at the end of each day. Substantial diggings disappeared beneath the replaced turf. We were sorry to see them leave.
The construction team that replaced them simply amazed us with the alacrity that raised a structure of such quality. On the one hand there was the complexity of the layering in the insulated floor, the walls and roof, and yet a certain simplicity in the prefabricated sections brought to the site. All the principals and technique of the Passivhaus were present, something that we were proud to have.
The outer wall cladding was cut to make a decorative statement about the desk window just added to the aesthetic. Once again we felt a reluctance to see them leave.
The Garage was re-roofed, clad and insulated, designed to contrast with the book room.
The entire construction has been achieved with such a seeming facility. I have never seen such a controlled, well managed and tidy programme, a small but significant point. Every person who came here was a valued and impressive contributor to the whole.