Middlecombe Barn nestles in a ‘coombe’ located deep in rural Devon, just inland from the coast. The scheme proposes to renovate a disused barn and walled-yard to create a new dwelling as a cluster of masses. The massing is unified by an existing encircling wall and connected by courtyard space. When viewed from the surrounding countryside, the intervention seeks to be as subtle and minimal as possible. The concept is based upon historical research and proposes to restore the historic footprint of this cluster of buildings as evidenced by historic maps from the 1800s.
The design seeks to be sensitive to the defining character of the South Devon AONB (area of outstanding natural beauty) and enhance its immediate setting – breathing new life into a derelict structure with accompanying improvements to building fabric and landscape ecology. The material strategy draws heavily from the locality, mixing slate and schist stone with cob and timber to create a limited but contextual palette. Due to the isolated nature of the site the dwelling will run completely off-grid.