Old Orchard
Old Orchard
New-build home
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Old Orchard

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Old Orchard: New-build home

When Robin and Sarah Richardson bravely took the plunge and built their own home from scratch, they were relieved when The Martin Sewell Building Company came on board to make their dream project a reality.

Over the years, the enterprising couple have successfully renovated and restored a number of properties. However, after deciding to downsize from a substantial, yet draughty, Grade II listed manor house in Prinsted and build on an adjacent plot, the pair knew they would need to call in the experts.

“In hindsight, I guess the seed of an idea to self-build was tentatively sown about 30 years ago when we visited a sustainable homes exhibition,” Sarah reveals.

“We’ve always moved to houses that require work and this made us even more aware that tackling a new-build, particularly in a conservation area, was going to be a whole different ball game.”

Keen to incorporate a green oak frame into their build, the couple tracked down local firm, The Green Oak Carpentry Company. They put Sarah in touch with Helyer Davies Architects who then recommended The Martin Sewell Building Company. “After the project went out to tender, we chose MSBC since we liked Martin’s professional approach and felt the result would be a quality build at a competitive price,” Sarah explains.

With planning permission granted for a stunning flint and brick eco-property, complete with a vaulted gallery and open-plan dining/kitchen/living room, the project began in November 2010.

“The build went smoothly and was completed within a year,” says Sarah. “I was very impressed with the MSBC team who were all delightful and courteous. The foreman and site manager were extremely good – they always came to me with solutions and answers to any queries, rather than problems,” Sarah adds.

Creating their well insulated, bespoke, three-bedroom home has been such a positive experience that the Richardsons have been bitten by the self-build bug.

“It was wonderful seeing our project progress. In fact, I enjoyed the whole process so much that I’d love to build another house in the future. If we do, we’d definitely choose Martin and his team again.”

Sarah Richardson (Client)

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