Published on 10 August 2022
Posted in Inspiration
When Kay and Dave North decided it was time to move house, they made the bold decision to sell their existing property and part of their substantial garden so they could build their dream home - in their old back garden!
Kay and Dave had lived at the property in Mansfield for many years. Although they loved the surrounding area and neighbourhood, they felt it was time for a change and decided they would like to build their own property, but the question was where.
“We did look around for other houses or plots of lands to buy but something just kept drawing us back to where we were,” explained Kay. “We have always loved our large back garden but felt that it was starting to get a little bit too much to look after. The perfect solution was to sell our existing home and part of the garden to enable us to build our dream home in our preferred location – our own back garden! I would also be able to choose who my new neighbours were going to be and how often can you do that?”
The project to build a brand new 4-bed dormer house on the existing plot began in March 2020 and coincided with the first national lockdown as a result of the global pandemic.
“The builders had just started digging the foundations when we went into the first lockdown,” explained Kay. “My husband and I are certainly not ones for sitting around and waiting so we decided to hire some equipment and carry on with the job until the builders were able to come back on site. We could also get on with planning and sourcing all the products for the build. Our builders recommended MKM to us and we are so glad we listened to them as they were brilliant and helped and guided us throughout the entire build.”
Supplying building materials to the value of almost £100,000, MKM provided expert advice and guidance throughout the project. From roof tiles, exterior bricks, aluminium windows and entranceways to doors, flooring, plasterboard and timber, MKM also supplied all the materials for the driveway and patio area in the back garden.
“This project was an interesting one from the start,” commented Chris Turner, Self-build and Projects Manager, MKM Sheffield Parkway. “The fact that Kay was building in her own back garden, the challenges we faced throughout the pandemic such as stock availability and a severe shortage of available tradesmen coupled with some of the specific requirements of the actual build itself meant that this project really stood out for me. It proved to be the perfect opportunity to demonstrate both the expertise and wide range of products that MKM can provide for projects like this. In fact, given the vast amount of product we supplied for this project for both the exterior and interior, you could say this is the house that MKM built!”
One of the challenges during the build phase was that the planning regulations stated that the property could not be over a certain height. Kay and Dave were keen to have a high vaulted skylight over the entrance to their new home to flood it with natural light. However, due to the height restrictions an alternative option had to be found. The solution was to install a crowned ceiling with extensive rooflight over the hallway instead of a vaulted ceiling. This met the both the requirements of the planning permission and Kay’s desire to have a bright and welcoming entrance to her new home. For Chris, it was the finishing touch to the property that made it really stand out from the crowd.
Chris commented: “It was a slight challenge working around Kay and Dave’s design brief and the planning restrictions in place. However, by working closely with one of our suppliers, Howell’s Glazing, and the architects involved in the build, we found the ideal solution was to install a crowned ceiling over the first floor landing and entranceway. This actually turned out to be one of the overall design highlights of the entire project. The entrance way is still flooded with lots of natural light and the design of the ceiling and skylight creates an optical illusion that the height of the room is much taller than it is. It really is a spectacular design feature on the property.”
In addition to all the building materials, MKM also supplied all the landscaping products as well. These included a Plaspave driveway in Sorrento Granite Stone and Granito Anthracite porcelain paving slabs for the back garden, ensuring both the front and back garden areas had the same wow factor as the house itself.
"It was such a relief to have Chris and the team at MKM on board throughout the build,” commented Kay. “Chris was extremely knowledgeable and passionate so he was a great addition to the project team, and I knew I could rely on him to help us get the job done. We are absolutely delighted with our new home and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend MKM to anyone embarking on a self-build or renovation. It was reassuring to know that we were in Chris’ very capable hands and it was a pleasure to work with both him and the wider MKM team.”