Revisiting Ed and Vicky from Grand Designs
Kevin McCloud returns to see if the couple have managed to realise their dream of self-sufficiency
Wondering what happened to Ed and Vicky from Grand Designs? Here’s how the couple who built the Somerset cowshed are faring now…
When Kevin McCloud took a final look around Ed and Vicky’s Somerset cowshed conversion during filming for the 2015 episode, the couple hadn’t managed to furnish or move into the place. He returned in August 2016 to see what had become a fully functional home with ‘integrity and soul’.
But the couple both still had full-time jobs, and the land had yet to reach its full self-sufficiency potential. So Kevin McCloud returned once more in 2022 to see if the couple had managed to realise their dream of independence.
‘Building a house isn’t just about providing yourself with somewhere warm and comfortable,’ says Kevin. ‘It’s also about the projection of hopes and ideas for a change of lifestyle. But of course that doesn’t always follow immediately. Building a house in a way is the easy bit, sometimes the way of life can take years.’
It took the couple seven years. By 2022 they had two young children and a beautiful, off-grid, low-impact, practically self-sufficient house.
Vicky was finally able to quit her full-time job at the end of 2021 and now teaches Pilates from her home studio, but the main source of income is their field-to-fork catering business.
— granddesigns (@granddesigns) October 26, 2022
The 12 acres of land they own has a kitchen garden as well as sheep, geese, chickens and pigs. Not only does this feed their family, but also around 50 people a week at supperclub events during the summer.
The events take place in a new timber-frame barn. There’s also a small cabin the couple rents out as a holiday let – the first thing Ed built entirely by himself from start to finish – and an annex that became home to Vicky’s father during the pandemic.
‘Ed and Vicky have created a remarkable model for subsistence living,’ says Kevin McCloud. ‘Everything they needed to build this special Eden, they have learned along the way.
‘They demonstrated that a greener, more considered way of life is possible, beautiful and desirable.’