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  • Writer's picturenimtim architects

Hutch House project is on the cover of April’s issue of Real Homes magazine

The existing house is an Edwardian end-of-terrace close to the river Thames. The ‘arts & crafts’ house was inspired by English vernacular architecture when designed by Alfred Salter - a pioneering doctor and liberal MP in the early 20th century. The enclave of low-rise and low-density housing was intended to encourage healthier lifestyles and attitudes for its working class residents.

Our creative clients, one working for a social media company and the other a product designer needed a home that would suit their current lives - as well as taking into account an imminent addition to the family. The proposals also needed to consider their two pet rabbits, Rocco and Fleur both of whom enjoyed digging and nibbling timber skirting boards.

Together with our clients, nimtim created a rear addition that was inspired by the architecture of the original development. This new extension at the rear is defined by steeply pitching roofs in clay-red tiles. Externally, the roofs pitch down to enclose a small external terrace whilst internally, the soffit is exposed to define a tall and dramatic dining and kitchen space.

Internally, the ground floor is opened up to provide a layout more suited to contemporary lives with subtly defined spaces for different activities. Arches between different spaces create soft thresholds and echo the openings on the original front elevation.

Consideration of the rabbits’ needs and activities was key: nimtim proposed a continuous datum 900mm above finished floor level on ground floor below which all materials and details are specific to the lives and upkeep of the pet rabbits including easy-cleaning gloss paint, recessed oak skirting and powder coated aluminium shadow gaps & corner trims. A small low level hatch within the glass wall onto the terrace gives the rabbits access to the garden.

The clients were actively involved in the fabrication of the new home and handmade each individual tile for the kitchen splash back, some tiles included hand and foot imprints of their newly born daughter.

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