THE CLEARING COTTAGE

New-Build Home on a Grade II Listed Estate

Hawkhurst | Kent

The Clearing Cottage located just off the high street, nestled in the shade of woods, is proposed as an urban farmhouse clad in blackened treated timber. The cottage is in dialogue with the main house of the property, a white painted timber clapboard Georgian family home with Victorian and more modern additi0ns. This Grade 2 Listed house is set deeper into the site and has been historically referred to as ‘The Clearing.’

Site plan

From the exterior, the Cottage appears modern despite its overall massing with pitched roof and traditional cladding. Our ambition has been to respect not only the main house on the property but also contribute to the surroundings and the old village of Hawkhurst. We felt it appropriate to work with the language of a farm building, the type of structure that would have been found in this location just at the periphery of a village. Important to the building envelope is the articulation of the various details that punctuate what is a largely simple building. These details include a shallow overhang, bay windows, chimney and decking.

Ground floor plan

First floor plan

From the interior, the design seeks to structure a rich series of rooms. These are vignettes of experience that flow into one another. The sequence through the house is set out according to a series of ‘reveals’ or progressions through spaces and their thresholds. The spaces have been pro­portioned to be flexible – each accommodating a variety of uses. While close to the high street, we thought it important that upon entering the house one loses an awareness of the village and associated traffic. The focus, through careful framing, becomes the open green or clearing, within the surrounding trees, greenery and sky above.

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