The site, located in the historic Oxfordshire village of Sutton Courtenay, is situated next to a brook that can flood during periods of heavy rain. The house design is orientated around flood protection and the garden setting is elevated above ground level, with a shifted plan to frame different views on site. During a flood, water is allowed in to convey underneath the house, yet during dry periods, its elevated position provides views out to the surrounding wildflower meadow. The graded landscape allows for controlled water ingress and retention, providing a gradual warning of an approaching flood inundation.
The modern and efficient home is low in profile and simple in form, with references taken from the timber clad vernacular in the area. The series of interlocking volumes, formed of timber, glass and steel, are arranged to provide open-plan living space that also manages to maintain the formality and practicality of separate rooms.
The intersecting forms define four areas of the house – a living room, central dining space, kitchen and bedroom wing, all wrapping around a south facing deck area. An expansive sliding door system opens the interior to the deck space creating a seamless transition between inside and out.
The open clad exterior allows dramatic shadow play across its elevations throughout the day and will grey over time, softly bedding the building into its landscape setting. (Completed whilst at Baca Architects).