Barn A Loddington Lane, Linton Park Estate
“While the Vernacular Homes team was working on three other projects for us: The Potting Shed, The Tractor Shed and Home Farm Barn, we started to consider what other buildings they might be able to work on for us. Being well-versed in barn conversions, we thought they could do a great job on two of our other barns – this one, Barn A, and also, Barn B, Loddington Lane, so we asked them for ideas. They came back with amazing proposals – something we really liked about working with them.
“On all our projects, they produced detailed plans, with lots of images which worked well for us, being very ‘visual’ people. If there was anything we wanted to change, they’d sit with us to go through and explain everything, so it was all in place before planning was submitted.
“There were a number of challenges with Barn A, mainly due to Covid and Brexit but we were really impressed with how Vernacular Homes dealt with them.
“A shortage of lorry drivers meant getting the materials to site was a challenge. Prices were also increasing dramatically, especially wood which became very scarce – a real issue as these were larch clad buildings. However, Vernacular Homes managed to keep working and altering the schedule around what materials were available. The only item that caused a hold-up was the metal framework for Barn A as it had been produced in the north of England and could only be transported via lorry. Vernacular Homes did not let this delay work, however, and got on with Barn B while they awaited its arrival.
“To mitigate the rising costs, the team did their utmost to get materials on site and into storage there before they were needed. We didn’t have space for everything, so they created a special storage area for the wood to prevent it from warping in the wet. They also took the time to source a local supplier for the aluminium windows which helped to bring the cost down considerably and avoid any delivery delays. I even went to see them being made which we enjoyed – not something you see every day.
“Another difficulty arose when we broke ground and discovered a spring which we were not aware of. Plus, the ground underneath was clay, so a lot of drainage had to be installed. There are two Victorian cottages close by, so we had to be mindful of any noise and disruption to the residents while this work was being carried out. Vernacular Homes was very considerate and instead of driving large muck lorries up to the property, they took any waste down to the nearby field where it was later removed by lorry. They also crushed a lot of the concrete which we were able to recycle and use as hardcore.
“The end result is two beautiful homes; I especially like the high staircase in Lime Tree Barn which splits into two, creating two ‘wings’. The idea to recess the walls and create a courtyard was also great; it means that both barns are flooded with light from either side, despite the fact they are surrounded by trees. They’ve really made them look interesting, even the little slit windows at the back of the property let in so much light and were really well thought through.”
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