17th Century Cottage Extension - Ogwell

The client’s listed cottage was in a perfect location with wonderful views, but it was too small. She wanted a light airy kitchen, an en-suite bedroom, somewhere to house her library of books – all the accoutrements of modern life.

So, when the adjacent property came up for sale, she instructed us to demolish it and set about replacing it with a light and airy annexe – the 21st Century twin of her cosy 17th Century cottage, which she could step into under a glazed walkway that links the two buildings.


  • Working with a young, gifted architect with high standards, whose client was his own mother, for whom he had designed an annexe that fitted her life and needs like a couture dress.
  • Constructing a glass floor-to-roof link between the original cottage and the annexe not only created problems with Conservation, but was technically hugely demanding.


  • Bringing to life the vision of the architect, who, based 300 miles away, had limited time for site visits.
  • Genuine team-building, led by a site manager with clear leadership skills and the ability to empathise with both client and architect.
  • Matching exactly the stonework of the front fascia so that, from outside, the cottage and annexe appear as one, with an oak front door in traditional style masking the minimalism within.
  • Achieving a sleek, modern style by using traditional materials in a contemporary style, for example machining the oak and linking it with steel.
  • Constructing and finishing the 2,000 hand-painted slats that line the spaces between the timbers in the vaulted roof – each with the nails precisely positioned.


Site manager: Brian Thirtle

Designer: Minale and Mann Architects

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