Batts Hall, Warwickshire

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Rear terrace
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batts hall

The Project

An award winning ‘Super Prime’ Country House with extensive leisure facilities and ancillary accommodation extending to around 19,000 ft2.

The Challenge

Janes Architectural were approached with regard to taking on the detailed design and assisting with the project management for a substantial new build country house located on a green belt site in Warwickshire. Planning consent for the property had been previously obtained by renowned classical architectural practice, ADAM Architecture, who had secured consent for a significant property based around a ‘butterfly’ format with an adjoining leisure wing and Annex.

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The client had a detailed brief with regard to the materials and building systems to be employed as well as the sustainability and energy efficiency of the building, with the long term intention of the property being able to operate ‘off grid’. With the building form and layout already set out and hand drawn plans available, Janes Architectural was required to liaise with the consultants already identified for the project and to source and introduce new consultants and specialist sub contractors, combining all information in order to produce the detailed design and specification which also involved several amendments and many refinements to the initial scheme. The building was to incorporate the following features and systems;

The Solution

Janes Architectural worked closely with the client, who wished to play an active role in the design and procurement team throughout the project. We assisted with assembling the team and the various specialist sub contractors having design input into the scheme. Detailed drawings, specifications and schedules were prepared for all aspects of the project from the superstructure and steel frame to the cinema room and wine cellar. We were responsible for the selection and detailed design of external and internal materials, all architectural features and lighting, with interior designers concluding with wall coverings and soft furnishings.The detailed design process and build programme proved to be particularly challenging in many ways with numerous technical and design issues to overcome. The challenges were met, managed and effective solutions accomplished to ensure that both technically and with regard to the finish and quality the new home superseded expectations.


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    Basement with reinforced concrete slab and ICF (insulated concrete formwork) walls using waterproof concrete.
  • Precast concrete plank floor structure.
  • Steel framed structure to leisure wing.
  • SIP’s (structural insulated panel) roof structure throughout.
  • Walls clad in natural stone and facing brickwork.
  • Roofs clad in clay and slate tiles, lead and single ply membranes.

Interior / accommodation / features

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  • ‘Wet-room’ bathrooms with natural stone & marble finishes.
  • Extensive limestone flooring.
  • Three storey self-supporting limestone helical staircase with stainless steel balusters and oak handrail, enclosed limestone stone spiral staircase and feature oak main staircase.
  • Frameless structural curved glass balustrade, doors and screens.
  • Bespoke designed joinery and fittings throughout.
  • Enclosed platform passenger lift.
  • Basement Wine Cellar, cinema room, games room, snooker room & playroom.
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    Relaxation / Gym area, underground squash court.
  • Swimming pool with extensive stone finishes, barrel vault ceiling, sauna and steam room.
  • Comprehensive plant rooms, linked by an underground passage.
  • Coffered and barrel vault ceilings with concealed LED strip lighting.
  • Extensive and fully fitted garage accommodation.
  • Separate self contained two bedroom annex.
  • Groundkeeper’s out buildings and stores.
  • Tennis Court.

Building Services

  • Space heating by ground source heat pump with under-floor heating.
  • Hot water heating by combined Solar thermal and ground source heat pump.
  • Mechanical heat-recovery ventilation throughout the property.
  • Air Source Swimming pool plant.
  • 50 kW photo-voltaic Solar array.
  • Rainwater harvesting system.
  • On site waste water treatment.
  • Back up generator.
  • ‘Lutron’ lighting control system.
  • Integrated Audio Visual system.
  • Advanced security and fire alarm system.

Batts Hall under construction

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Award Winning


Batts Hall selected as a Winner in the Marvin Architects Challenge.

Briarwood Manor, Four Oaks Park

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The Project

Alterations and extensions to an impressive Arts & Crafts house original built in the early 1900’s located within the Four Oaks Park conservation area.

Briarwood Manor, Four Oaks Park Conservation Area.

The Challenge

289 survey - 6The client had recently acquired the property, which in areas had been subject to prior extension and alteration works that were not in keeping with the quality of the original house, and were also looking dated and tired. The kitchen in particular had been in-filled with reclaimed brickwork and a lowered ceiling to make a ‘cottage style’ affair that was rather dark and pokey. To the side of the kitchen was a garage and behind that a dilapidated part timber built extension housing various store rooms and a small utility. The house being set in expansive and well laid out grounds was also lacking connectivity with the garden particularly from the kitchen area.

289 progress drive - 11In addition at some time in the past a portion of the plot, which also contained the impressive stone vehicular entrance serving the original house had been sold off for development, and the house was currently accessed from the side via a road serving other properties and not from its own road frontage.

The Solution

289 as built orangery - 1Following a detailed survey, a scheme was produced to remove the old kitchen and expose the original walls and ceiling along with further structural alteration to maximise the available space. To provide improved views over the rear gardens and better access to it, a large octagonal ended Orangery was designed featuring a main sitting area and an adjoining TV room with work-space and storage. Along with this the old timber framed extension was taken down and replaced with a new utility, boiler house and garden toilet. Access was also provided to the garage roof space which was converted into a playroom / cinema room.

289 progress drive - 12With regard to the new vehicular access we secured consent to enlarge an original pedestrian gated access and designed a new gated sweeping driveway leading to a circular turning and parking area centred on the front door complete with central ‘Eaton’ style fountain. This also linked to the current side access that was retained as a service access point. As part of these works the rather overgrown frontage was re landscaped and set out with new planting and lighting to create a more fitting entrance and approach to this fine house.

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Culross House, Four Oaks Park

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The Project:

Alterations and extensions to an impressive Arts & Crafts house original built in the early 1900’s.

Culross House, Four Oaks Park Conservation Area.

The Challenge

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To the North side of the existing house there was a small double garage only really suitable for one vehicle with a workshop behind and a small courtyard to the front, the garage was separated from the main house by a further small courtyard. The client wished to create garaging for up to four vehicles, provide a snooker room and also a self-contained annex. The extension was to blend seamlessly with the existing house and the raised terrace to the rear of the property.


The Solution

299 exterior rear - 3A scheme was produced to take down the existing garage and workshop and to build a new four-car garage (2 wide x 2 deep) along the same line but extending forward using the old courtyard space. To the rear of the garage we located a lobby and staircase providing access to a self-contained annex within the roof void, and behind that a large orangery to house the snooker table and with elevated views over the grounds. In order to connect the new accommodation with the house, the internal yard was covered with a glazed roof and wall so as not to inhibit natural light into the existing window openings, and a new ‘trades’ entrance formed where the old boiler house had been located.


299 exterior deck - 4Externally there were significant works to form a stepped terrace with the lower section housing a sunken spa pool, the walls were formed in concrete block-work and then clad in a reproduction dry stone walling solution to provide a near match the original walling to the rear of the property, and terrace clad in reclaimed york stone flags.

Roof tiles and bricks from the demolished buildings were salvaged and re used on the principle exposed elevations, with further bricks being made to match the originals. The works were carefully designed and detailed so as to provide the required seamless integration with the original property.

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Bracebridge Road, Four Oaks Park

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The Project

Major alterations and extensions to an existing detached bungalow involving near complete demolition.

Bracebridge Road, Four Oaks Park Conservation Area.

The Challenge

259 exg front - 1The clients acquired the bungalow with the intention of carrying out its extension and modernisation, the property being sited on a pleasant plot with an attractive mature south-facing garden. The existing property was of simplistic design with three bedrooms, two bathrooms a lounge / dining room, small kitchen, study, utility and a large hardwood conservatory. The existing footprint was already to the full available site width and sited quite close to the front boundary with no scope extending forward.

259 progress - 1The brief was to utilise the whole of the ground floor for the garage kitchen and reception rooms and to house four decent sized bedrooms with three bathrooms within new space to be created at first floor level. The conservatory was to be retained and refurbished as it was of sound construction. The simple rendered appearance with neo Georgian windows and a concrete tiled low pitched roof was to be replaced with that of an early 1900’s Arts & Crafts cottage with traditional hand made materials and detailing.

To top it off the clients had taken the whole project on as a self managed self-build project!

The Solution

259 interior stairs - 11A scheme was produced to re work the ground floor accommodation to provide a new breakfast kitchen area opening up to the conservatory via sliding folding doors, the existing living room was retained but with new minster style open fireplace and chimney also providing an open fire for a log burner within the kitchen. The three bedrooms were knocked out and the space utilised for a dining room, cloakroom, drawing room and larger open hall to house a new helical oak staircase to access the first floor accommodation.

The existing low pitched trussed roof was removed and replaced with a traditional cut timber roof to a higher pitch with a new gable to the front and rear facing dormer windows to create further bedroom space. Four characterful bedrooms were sited within the new roof along with 3 bathrooms and an impressive galleried landing.

259 exterior detail - 22Externally the Arts & Crafts look was achieved with a mix on hand made clay roof tiles, tile hung gables, a painted rough cast rendered wall covering with contrasting red sandstone detailing, oak doors and window sub frames with steel casement windows.

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The front elevation features a two-storey oak framed bay window supporting an over-sailing gable roof, and to the opposing rear gable there is a wide cantilevered bay on gallows brackets.

As can be seen from the photos, during the early stages of the build once the roof had been removed and the internal walls which were no longer required, the conservatory was one of the few elements of the structure left standing. A ‘what have I done’ moment for the client! As the property was re assembled worries were allayed and with careful selection of materials and attention to detail the new home came together wonderfully.

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Hartopp Road, Four Oaks Park

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The Project

Extension, internal re-modeling and external face-lift of an existing 1960’s detached house.

Hartopp Road, Four Oaks Park Conservation Area.

The Challenge

312 Exg front - 3The clients acquired the property with the intention of carrying out its extension and modernisation. The house had limited, dated and compromised accommodation comprising four bedrooms, one having en suite and a separate bathroom and WC. On the ground floor the drawing and dining rooms were of good proportion, but the kitchen was small with many adjoining cupboards and store rooms taking up potentially useful space. There was also a prior two storey extension to the side to create a small study with the en suite bathroom above.

312 interior kitchen 0006The brief was to create a large family kitchen adjoining both the dining room and a new utility room, enlarge the study to make home office space for two. Provide five bedrooms on the first floor, three with en suite bathrooms, a separate family bathroom and a games / cinema room in the loft. In addition the dated and plain 1960’s appearance was to be replaced with an early 1900’s traditional look with new windows and external materials throughout.

The Solution

312 interior orangery 0009A scheme was produced comprising small extensions to each side and to the front gable, a new orangery garden room to provide light and airy living space adjoining the kitchen and overlooking the garden, also the reworking of the roof structure to enhance the appearance and to create the additional loft space required.

Externally the new roof was re clad in plain clay tiles with new soffit and fascia, the majority of the residual existing brickwork was clad in traditional rough cast render, a new brick was used for the front and rear extensions to provide contrast, and new white painted timber framed windows were specified with brick and tile detailing to the openings. The replacement front gable was given a ‘statement’ brickwork splayed bay window at first floor level supported by stone columns to either side of the new recessed front door. The driveway and rear terrace was also re planned to provide additional turning / parking space and better connection of the house with the rear grounds.

312 exterior rear 0003The internal accommodation was extensively re worked in layout to provide all of the required accommodation and the property was completely re-wired, plumbed, plastered, fitted out and finished to provide a completely ‘New Home’ feel.

The clients were delighted with the result and increase in value added to the property!

Clients View

“In 2004 we purchased 35 Hartopp Road. It was a house that was in need of a drastic overhaul. We were keen to get an architect who had flair, a sense of creativity, and the ability to translate our ideas and concepts into something that looked stunning both inside and outside, in short, a unique and personalised property.

312 interior stairs 0005Trudy Yates of Trudy Interior Design recommended Simon to us as a result of her work, which took her into a number of his creations both on the Four Oaks Estate and Little Aston Park. We had to wait a couple of years due to the high demands for Simon’s service but it was well worth the wait.

Simon’s personal attention to detail was first class and his ability to put us at the heart of the process and guide us positively and confidently through each stage, made us feel that we were part of a real partnership.

The final product was a stunning, bespoke, elegant and stylishly home with an arts and craft feel to it. We are thrilled with the outcome and the additional value that has been added to what was a sad dilapidated property.

We can recommend Simon’s work without reservation. He is a first rate architect who relishes the challenge of interpreting a client’s brief and requirements and creating something which will be memorable and special for them.”

– Ken & Lorna Morris

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Hartopp Court, Four Oaks Park

Hartopp Court, Four Oaks Park

The Project

Demolition of an original house which had been subject to prior conversion into a residential home for the elderly, and the construction of two new luxury homes for re-sale.

Hartopp Court, Four Oaks Park conservation area.

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Roman Way, Little Aston Park

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The Project:

Demolition of a derelict house and construction of new family home with leisure facilities having internal spaces of around 10,700 ft2.

‘Roman Way’, Little Aston Park conservation area.

The Challenge

320 Existing House - FrontThe original property was long and narrow in shape and was located on a corner plot within an established Conservation Area. The property had been seriously damaged by fire under previous ownership.

The brief was to deliver a substantial family residence with generous room sizes and incorporating Leisure facilities with the design based around the style and principles of the Arts & Crafts Movement.

The Solution

Due to the square shape of the corner plot and ample proportions the site was suitable for a multi aspect property, which would make the best use of outlook and the light available from a heavily wooded and shaded site.

320 perspectiveA ‘butterfly’ format was used to define the shape of the property, this was set at 45° within the square site, enabling the rear elevation to face the south corner which also maximised the apparent depth of the plot. The form also incorporated two further wings to the front and rear, providing elevations facing in eight differing directions. The leisure facilities and garaging were then located in an interconnecting enclosure adjoining the North East wing.

‘Butterfly’ format buildings create a challenge with the layout of interior spaces due to internal walls converging at 45° to a possible point. The solution adopted was to have a central cylindrical stair core housing an inner helical staircase from ground to first floor and then a further helical stair wrapping around the back of the inner one to access the accommodation on the second floor. The result was a dramatic hall and landing open to the full height of the building.

320 progress - 46The internal accommodation features a large central kitchen, breakfast and sitting area, 3 further spacious principle reception rooms, a gym / relaxation area with vaulted ceiling, a split level dedicated cinema room, and garaging for 3 vehicles with studio above. The upper floors house five bedrooms and dressing rooms and En suite bathrooms with two bedrooms having enclosed balconies accessed by sliding folding doors and also a self contained living space and kitchen on the second floor.

A principal feature of many original properties built during the Arts & Crafts era were the dominant chimney structures, these being considered an indication of wealth and affluence. The property has a symmetrical front elevation featuring two striking chimney stacks opposing each other on the wings to either side of the main entrance, essentially framing it and giving the property a commanding appearance from the front, were as the rear has a considerably softer appearance.

The overall result was a building of great character both internally and externally.

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Charnwood House, Four Oaks Park

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The Project

Demolition of a 1960’s house and construction of a substantial new five bedroom family residence with indoor swimming pool having internal spaces of around 7,500 ft2.

Charnwood House, Four Oaks Park Conservation Area.

The Challenge

294 existing front - 6The client’s originally lived in separate properties adjacent to the plot. When their neighbour decided to sell up, they joined forces and took the opportunity to purchase the property with the intent to build a new home for them selves!

Janes Architectural were instructed to come up with a design solution more in keeping with the traditional property styles on the private estate but with interior spaces set out in a modern way with the kitchen being the hub of the home.


The Solution

294 completed rear - 51Inspiration was taken from the houses of renowned architect of the Arts & Crafts movement, Sir Edwin Lutyens, and with the exterior of the property in particular, every effort was taken to ensure the materials and detailing were true to the period. Internally specifications were more up to date with precast concrete floors, under-floor heating integrated audio, lighting and security systems etc.

The site had the benefit of a southerly facing rear aspect, the internal spaces were set out to maximise the benefit of this orientation with a raised terrace across the rear of the property connecting the principle rooms and the pool hall. This provided daylong sunlight (when available), and a wonderful relaxing and entertaining space overlooking the grounds.

294 completed pool - 18Internal accommodation comprises a large kitchen / breakfast / lounge area with fireplace, doors to the rear terrace and an internal corner window overlooking the swimming pool. There are three further, well proportioned, reception rooms all with feature oak bay windows and stone fireplaces. Along the North East boundary is the garaging, utility, plant and changing rooms for the swimming pool and spa, which in turn extends out into the rear garden. The pool hall has sliding folding doors with flush access to the terrace and a tall bay window providing seating space and overlooking the garden.

294 completed stair - 28A central oak staircase with mid landing and views over the rear grounds leads to five bedrooms, four having En suite facilities and a family bathroom, which also serves the second floor accommodation. On the second floor there is a large attic room with fireplace ideal for a playroom, teenagers lounge / games room or a further bedroom suite.

Clients View

“Having known Simon for may years and of his excellent reputation there was no contest for the works with other local architects. Simon listened to what we wanted from our new home, and his ideas were up to date and inspirational. The attention to detail was second to none and thanks to Janes Architectural we now live in an amazing home admired by many.”

– Verity Petty & David Hill

civic society awardDesign Award

To the delight of the clients, the house was joint winner of the Sutton Coldfield Civic Society Design Awards 2008 along with ‘Luttrell House’ also designed and delivered by Janes Architectural. The property set a trend for further ‘High End’ bespoke self-build development on the estate.


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Luttrell House, Four Oaks Park

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The Project

Demolition of a dormer bungalow with detached garage and construction of a substantial new seven bedroom family residence with swimming pool having internal spaces of around 9,400 ft2.

Luttrell House, Four Oaks Park Conservation Area.

The Challenge

302 existing front - 9Having previously constructed a more modest property on the same estate also designed by Janes Architectural, the client was keen to build a larger property to a higher specification and in more ample grounds. An established plot was secured which housed a dormer bungalow built in the 1970’s, although of good order there was plenty of room for improvement and to provide a property more becoming of the site and its location.

The brief was to deliver a substantial family residence with generous room sizes and incorporating an indoor swimming pool with associated facilities, with the design based around the style and principles of the Arts & Crafts Movement so as to be in-keeping with the style of properties historically constructed on the estate.

The Solution

302 exterior rear - 02An asymmetric design was adopted with principle rooms set out to make the best use of outlook and natural light as well as position in relation to each other. In order to maximise the benefit from the South West side of the plot, the ground floor spaces were set out around a triangular foot print with the ‘long edge’ facing North East side boundary and the ‘point’ towards the South West. Introducing multiple steps into the façade enabled rooms to have South West side facing windows as well as those facing to the rear and front to make best use of natural light throughout the day.

302 interior pool - 3In order to provide connectivity with the garden and to maximise sunlight into the space the swimming pool enclosure was located in a wing extending rearwards into the rear garden. Internal spaces were organised so that this did not compromise or restrict light into and outlook from adjacent rooms, the adjoining drawing room having windows both overlooking the grounds and into the pool hall.

High quality materials were used for the external envelope, handmade bricks and roof tiles, natural stone, European oak doors and window sub frames with bronze casement windows along with extensive use of tie creasing details to complete the Arts & Crafts appearance.

302 exterior rear - 01Internally the accommodation features a large Kitchen & Breakfast area, four further reception rooms and grand central hall with a majestic oak staircase and full galleried landing with reading area, a contemporary shaped swimming pool with spa pool, sauna and changing facilities. On the upper floors there are seven bedrooms, five having en-suite bathrooms and dressing rooms and the master suite with a balcony. For the motor enthusiast there is a four car garage with workspace, and a gymnasium / studio above.

BBC Filming location

In 2011 Luttrell house was found by a film location scout and subsequently chosen by the director of the BBC’s popular crime drama series ‘Line of Duty’ as a filming location. Various scenes for the series were filmed in and around the property. Watch the YouTube video clip of episode 2 to see more of the house and some of the action!

Design Award

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To the delight of the client, the property was joint winner of the Sutton Coldfield Civic Society Design Awards 2008 along with ‘Charnwood House’ also designed and delivered by Janes Architectural.

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Luttrell Road, Four Oaks Park

The Project

Demolition of a large bungalow and construction of new home with basement leisure facilities and car parking, having internal spaces of around 11,500 ft2.

Luttrell Road, Four Oaks Park conservation area.

The Challenge

314 exg buildingHaving seen similar works carried out locally the client saw an opportunity to have a bespoke property built with extensive internal accommodation.

The original property sprawled across the entire width of the site and was uncharacteristic of the traditional 2 and 3 storey properties built on this estate during the early 1900’s, many of which are now listed buildings.

The brief was to secure planning consent for the demolition of the existing property and construction of a new home having traditional appearance but with spacious internal accommodation to suit an extended family.

The Solution

314 exterior rear - 05A classic double fronted appearance was adopted for the new property with the floor plan set out around an ‘H’ format, with central staircase overlooking the grounds to the rear via a large bay window. Tile hung gable roofs over-sailing two storey bay windows to the front, with a cantilevered roof and balcony serving the master bedroom to the rear completed the look.

The garaging was originally intended to be in a separate coach house to the side of the property however with significant resistance from the local authority to having a garage visible to the front of the property. The only option available without compromising the living accommodation was to go underground. With this in mind the opportunity arose to utilise the majority of the space below the ground floor as additional basement accommodation.

314 interior hall - 2In total the basement solution houses five to six cars, two plant rooms, a dedicated split-level cinema room, gym and wellness centre with Spa pool, steam room, sauna and relaxing area as well a wine cellar.

The ground floor houses a large kitchen breakfast area, four further reception rooms each with a large stone open fireplace, study and utility / second kitchen. A wide oak feature staircase provides access to eight bedrooms, six with En suite facilities, and two with open fires, there is also a further bathroom and Attic storage.

The result is a handsome & deceptively large family home concealing a few nice surprises below ground level, and with more than ample space for the family to enjoy.

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