Victorian houses are generally well suited to modern living, being well built with adaptive and generous, well lit rooms. They are also very attractive and many boast stained glass windows, patterned tiling and historic features. This project involved a grand Victorian house that had many such loved features and had been a cherished home for a number of years. Following diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease, the owner weighed up the benefits of either moving house to be prepared for any likely reduction in mobility or to adapt their own current home.

Several sketch options were quickly produced as a feasibility and briefing exercise to determine if any alterations would give the space required, without causing any detriment to the proportions and spaces. Following a loose costing exercise and consultation with estate agents a hybrid proposal, picking up the preferred aspects of a number of sketch proposals was developed into a Planning Application to include a rear extension. Consideration was given to the potential impact upon the sale-price of the house should they have to move in the future.

Sketch options showed how the proposal could be converted in the future to make use of the additional ground floor space in another fashion. The rear extension gives an additional ground floor living and bedroom area should mobility reduce and has a great relationship with their much-loved garden. A new ensuite has been carefully sized to minimise loss of floorspace but still provide adequate ambulant disabled access. Although not wholly relevant in this case, Tom’s experience in healthcare projects gave a good understanding of the needs and space requirements for such accommodation.