"Cear" The Street, Charsfield, Suffolk, UK
Built for my family in 1965, this house was the first I did in Britain. It was built on a site beside a little stream, in a village better known by its fictional name - "Akenfield" by Ronald Blythe. It was mentioned briefly in the book, "...one of the most beatiful houses in the village...".
It was very well insulated for the time, with 8 cms of poystyrene in the cavity walls and an inner skin of lightweight concrete blocks (Durox). The exterior walls were of facebrick - recycled 'Suffolk White' bricks from a demolished house. It had larger windows on the south East and West sides. The roof was very well insulated with mineral wool. Heating was electrical underfloor cables on the off-peak tariff. It had a central entrance "atrium" with a glass roof (the site was very close to a Roman road). There was a small raised open fireplace, used only occasionally. The cost of the house at that time was 3845 Pounds. A great deal of the interior and finishing work was done by me and my wife Margaret. I made the double glazed windows, built the glass atrium roof, hung doors and Margaret painted the interiors . There was no single overall contractor, but I employed different tradesmen to carry out the work under my supervision. The house was built in two phases, first with a car port, and then a year later a garage was added and the car port was enclosed with glazed doors. The first design was refused planning permission by the Suffolk County Planning Authority, but I appealed against the decision, and won the right to build it. Later owners extended and modified the house very sympathetically, the architect having consulted me.