From the architect: The owners of this Victorian family house, set within the Dartmouth Park Conservation Area, commissioned De Rosee Sa to create an sympathetic, yet contemporary, family residence. Dartmouth Park is a district of north London in the London Borough of Camden, on the slope of the hill that rises up to Highgate from Kentish Town. On its west side, it borders Parliament Hill Fields.
Our clients owned the upper maisonette and had lived there for several years. Their downstairs neighbour decided to leave and luckily our clients were able to agree the purchase of their ground floor flat. Our design re-instated the building back to its original arrangement as a three-storey town house.
There were a few challenges, primarily how to increase the proportions to give it a sense of grandeur and generosity of space. The first priority was to tackle a low floor to ceiling height on the ground floor. There was a unsympathetic level change between the front and rear of the ground floor; we decided to move that level change further towards the front, using the front as a cloakroom area, framing the bay window with tongue and groove cupboards either side and a window bench under.
The extra height gained in the middle of the ground floor meant that we now had the proportions to locate the kitchen in the middle, with an adjacent dining area. The living room is located towards the rear, with a Defra Approved woodburing stove and new glazing towards the garden. A long skylight brings lights deep into the plan. Joinery around the fireplace gives the living area additional detail and atmosphere.
The extension into the rear garden was rebuilt and widened to match the depth and shape of the neighbouring roof pitch but using Blue Staffordshire brick to give it a more contemporary treatment and crisper architectural details. A glass sliding door and window seat under a large window addresses the new patio and garden. Cava limestone was used for the patio and steps up to the lawn area. De Rosee Sa also designed the western red cedar clad garden sheds to house the clients extensive tools!