In this innovative renovation project, Gregory Kewish and Rebecca Sturrock built upwards to make the most of the vista from the roof of their Cornish timber cottage home.

TV House North Cornwall Timber Cottage2

A seven and a half metre-long picture window with a sliding door provides panoramic views from the living space, while a spacious office is tucked under the gable

 

Sometimes, the solution you need is right in front of you. Gregory Kewish and Rebecca Sturrock were struggling to sell their recently renovated house in Padstow, Cornwall, and were living in a small cottage on Rebecca’s parents’ land. ‘One evening, we climbed up to the roof to look at the view. We suddenly realised the potential of the timber cottage,’ says Gregory. ‘Straight away, we crunched the numbers to see what we could afford.’

TV House North Cornwall Timber Cottage2

Gregory, here with Rebecca and twins Billie and Ava, built all the furniture himself, including the dining table and benches

 

Gregory, who has a Masters degree in architecture from the USA, put together a design brief for the timber cottage. ‘We wanted to give ourselves more room and provide our twin daughters with their own bedroom,’ he explains. ‘The existing cottage only measured 42 square metres, so we needed extra space.’ He decided to use cross-laminated timber to cantilever a new house over the old building, which provides a bigger floorplan, while retaining its rustic charm. ‘We wanted a healthy home with lots of light, which captured the view across the Cornish countryside.’

To cut down on costs and gain experience, Gregory was keen to build the timber cottage himself, so he sourced a small German company willing to sell the timber to an individual. Together with a friend, builder Richard Mashiter, he kept to a tight schedule and the family moved in nine months after work began. The end result is a spacious, warm-looking interior, full of natural light, which Kevin McCloud described as ‘one of the most beautifully crafted houses I’ve ever seen’.

TV House North Cornwall Timber Cottage2

All kitchen and utility appliances are A++ rated and a boiling-water tap has been fitted so the family only heats the water they need

 

Photography: Paul Ryan-Goff

Kevins Column

Top self build highlights at Grand Designs Live 2019 hosted by Kevin McCloud

Find top experts, specialist exhibitors and a wealth of inspiration for your self-build or renovation project all under one roof.
visit-award-winning-grand-designs-live-hosted-by-kevin-mccloud
tv-house-shed-south-east-lodnon
Grand Designs TV Houses

TV house: Urban shed in south-east London

Tracy Fox and her husband Steve wanted to build an 'urban shed' out of industrial materials in an old milk yard, but the choice of...
tv-house-underground-london-studios
Grand Designs TV Houses

TV house: Underground home in a former London recording studio

These ambitious designers created a light, bright home, in spite of much of it being under ground level.
most-memorable-tv-house-kitchens
Grand Designs TV Houses

5 of the most memorable kitchens from Grand Designs TV houses

Are these the best kitchens from Grand Designs' TV homes? Let us know your thoughts!
most-expensive-grand-designs-homes
Grand Designs TV Houses

4 of the most expensive builds to feature on Grand Designs

These spectacular homes may have let their budgets run wild, but was the end result worth the expense?
cantilever-tv-houses
Grand Designs TV Houses

4 cantilevered self build homes featured on Grand Designs

Each of these outstanding homes, all featured on Grand Designs, appear to defy physics with overhanging structural elements.
tv-house-strathaven-airfield-scotland
Grand Designs TV Houses

TV house: Strathaven Airfield in South Lanarkshire, Scotland

This extraordinary build on an airfield in Scotland recalls the structures of nearby airplane hangars.