My Space - An Edwardian conversion in Hove

PUBLISHED: 01:16 05 October 2011 | UPDATED: 20:05 20 February 2013

My Space - An Edwardian conversion in Hove

My Space - An Edwardian conversion in Hove

An Edwardian conversion in Hove

Chris Jessop and Andrew Newman wanted a sympathetic renovation for their Edwardian home in Brighton, making the most of the houses high ceilings and light, airy rooms. Antonia Edwards tells us how they did it.

Partners for 15 years, Chris Jessop and Andrew Newman bought a relatively untouched Edwardian home in Brightons Queens Park in 2007. Impressed by the proportions of the rooms, their high ceilings and sense of space and light, they spent more than a year planning a sustainable renovation with the help of Jim Miller Design Ltd.

Andrew works at local special needs school Downs View and Chris sings with the Brighton & Hove Gay Mens Chorus, who have recently been signed to Universal Records and are launching their first album this month.

As part of the renovation, Chris and Andrew wanted to build a modern kitchen/dining area where the space flowed effortlessly into a traditional library, creating both a large and sociable entertaining space but with the flexibility to close off the library and turn it into a peaceful retreat.

The property was in need of modernisation so the couple worked closely with Jim Miller, of Jim Miller Design Ltd, to decide how to reconfigure the space to suit their lifestyle. Jim says, Although no part of the house has escaped alteration, both Chris and I were determined that changes would be sensitive to the original Edwardian architecture and hopefully visitors would be unaware of the interventions. While the extension is unreservedly contemporary, the use of natural and matching materials such as render and timber soften its impact and allow the old and new to sit harmoniously together.

With the old single storey kitchen demolished, Jim encouraged us to build a more modern space than we had intended, one which would complement the old architecture of the building and blend together seamlessly. The key to the extensions success has been the continuation of high ceilings through from the library and the addition of two walls of folding glass doors, which now bring views of the previously unseen garden into the core of the house. We were very pleased with the results, says Chris.

Having dramatically improved the insulation throughout, they installed a green sedum roof over the kitchen and added underfloor heating to the ground floor. This is fed from solar panels and maintains a healthy and comfortable living environment all year round. Chris says: This flexible space has become the very heart of our home.

For more info contact Jim Miller Design Ltd, Hove 01273 233548.

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