Perkins House – ‘A’ framed new-build private dwelling in forest setting, Staffordshire.

Passive energy efficient new-build ‘A’ framed private dwelling

Designed for a private client and his family, this unique project was constructed in the rear garden of an existing dwelling located in established heathland with most trees subject to a blanket TPO. As a consequence, apart from the obvious and unique structural ‘A’ frame design,  non-standard piles and ring beams and no-dig techniques had to be employed in the substructure design to ensure it’s construction and occupation of the plot did not adversely impact upon the surrounding mature trees.

The principal behind the ‘A’ frame design is the creation of a simple and efficient structural form which facilitates the full use of the volume of the dwelling whilst incorporating a steep pitched roof as an appropriate response to the leaves and debris which naturally occur in this ‘forest’ type setting. The plan layout is specifically designed to harness passive energy efficiency; south facing sidewall glazing and roof glazing located over the kitchen/dining area captures free solar gain in the thermal mass of the slab and masonry walls, and the rising warm air introduces a vertical thermal ‘flue’ at the heart of the house which allows air movement to flow throughout the upper floor and discharge at the ridgeline, with replacement cooler air being pulled in from the ground floor. In addition to the fundamental ‘science’ behind this, the resultant galleried landing and dual height space facilitates connectivity between the ground and first floor at the heart of the dwelling and the private amenity spaces beyond.