The Counsel House

A reimagining of a tired extension and conservatory to create a family home and incorporate a private therapy consultation room with separate access

The existing dated rear extensions were replaced to create a private consultation room and open plan family breakfast and living space. All of demanded a view onto the private garden yet also separation. The extension comprises two interlocking volumes that visually distinguish their separate functions. The form of the two elements reflects their dual aspects, with the counselling space housed within the solid brick element and the lightweight glazed element opening up the dining area.

The consultation room was programmatically detached from the main house with a separate side entrance away from the family, yet retained a homely scale and feel. The volume needed to give a balanced consideration of patients’ privacy, alongside a room filled with light and views of the garden. Internally, exposed Douglas Fir purlins and integrated oak joinery create a contemplative, compassionate environment where patients are encouraged to become more aware of the conscious and unconscious processes behind thoughts and feelings.

The flat roof volume houses the main family living space, stepping down from the kitchen and dining area. The external brick continues internally, forming an integrated breakfast are that benefits from morning sun.

The upper floors were altered to rationalise room sizes and a new staircase leads all the way up to a teenage hideaway on the second floor.

A paired back palette of natural materials with a focus on craftmanship sets a harmonious backdrop for contemporary family spaces, where externally, detailed brickwork constructs a striking sculptural form.