The School House

The Main Character

Our client was a young professional couple who had recently got married and were excited about starting their new life together. They fell in love with a beautiful listed house at the centre of a village in Northamptonshire which was close to their families, the pub and cricket club and duly purchased their first home together.

View of the back of a house

View of a house from the street

The Setting

Their home is grade two listed and is stone with a mixture of brick extensions to the side and the rear of the property.  It was the old school house for the village and had been converted in a quirky manner with a flying freehold to an element of the property.  It is located next to the church and could be seen in one of the key vistas of the church.

The house had an old addition to the side of the property that had been left to fall into disrepair by the old owners, but a planning consent had previously been granted to replace it with a like for like extension to form a small kitchen extension to the side of the house.  Additionally, there was a 1960’s rear extension which was in a poor state of repair and detracted from the main original element of the listed building.

The Challenge

The property was a great house for a young professional couple with plenty of space for two people but, with plans to expand their family, they realised that the property would need extending to create their family home.  The key aspects that needed improving were the relationship of the property to the garden and creating a family-sized kitchen and dining area.  These spaces were contained within two small separate rooms, which did not create the larger family space they desired but was perfect for the last part of their brief which was a play room and study.

The Return

After interviewing several architect practices, the ideas and relationship that formed with Scroxton & Partners from the outset of the project helped make it an easy decision to select us to work with.  We worked closely with them in the initial stages of the project, producing a feasibility study with several alternative layouts and precedent ideas to enable us to move confidently into the more detailed design of the project.  With initial designs produced, we engaged with the planning department through a pre-application submission and, upon receiving positive feedback, we submitted the planning and listed building applications which were approved.  Through our client’s interest in contemporary design and the sensitive approach towards the listed building we were able to secure a consent that doubled the size of the previous approval and far exceeded our client’s expectations of what would be possible.


With our clients’ busy professional lives and lack of construction experience, we were employed to produce the working drawings and manage the tender and construction process.  By selecting a contractor that we had worked with regularly we were able to deliver the project successfully, creating a unique and stunning extension to a listed building and creating the family home they desired.

The Final Twist

Their family grew much quicker than expected and, with the house only being three bedroom, a fourth bedroom was needed to keep up with their expanding family.  We have since gained planning consent for a replacement rear extension that has a fourth bedroom on the first floor and guest bedroom on the ground floor, with an additional shower room to help reduce family arguments when the children are older.


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