gilt hill farm

project code: pfh_20_004   design: 2020   budget: £200 – £250k

“The farm has been in my family for three generations, I remember the view out to the 40 bridges it had, my grandfather loved the arches and watching the steam trains pass over them.”


The farm was once an open air mine, the farm house was built to house the manager of the open mine at the time. Coal was extracted from the farm and was distributed via rail and the trains transporting these mined goods traveled over the near by ’40 Bridges’, the former Kimberly viaduct. Like many sites in the local area, this farm once played a key role in the industrial era success for this town.

The ’40 bridges’ was a former landmark and has since been demolished. The client grew up watching her grandfather pausing during the rounds on the farm to watch the steam trains cross the viaduct. The site is elevated and the house is situated on the crest of a hill, making it visible from multiple vantage points within the surrounding area.

The clients had been spurred into redeveloping their home due to noisy neighbours caused by the former school next door being converted into multiple apartments now sharing a boundary with this farm. The now shared boundary is where they had recently had a new lounge built with decking area, a slice of private outdoor space the client often enjoyed after work, but is now no longer the quiet space it once was.

The clients wanted to create a series of new spaces that were incidental to the enjoyment of the dwelling-house such as a health suite comprising of swimming pool, gym and sauna, as well as, a series of new courtyards that would allow for private outdoor spaces that are screened from noisy neighbours. The existing street scene for the entrance of the site was a series of curved brick retaining walls, the design played on this by adding a new curved brick wall that housed a large purpose built courtyard, this wall was detailed with a series of inset arches to mirror the now demolished viaduct this house once overlooked.