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Grand Designs House of the Year 2021 shortlist tonight



The second episode of this sixth series of Grand Designs: House of the Year 2021 will air tonight on Channel 4, as architecture guru Kevin McCloud, backed by designer Michelle Ogundehin and architect Damion Burrows, visits five other cutting edge residential projects and narrowed them down to two finalists in the RIBA competition.

Tonight’s program will feature the category, materials used in a new and beautiful way and follows last week’s theme houses that surprise you.

Here is a taste of what to expect …

A beautifully crafted concrete house

McCloud will first visit rural Lincolnshire, a landscape dotted with farm barns. But he finds a barn with a difference.

It is the new home of civil engineer Henry and Jen, and their young family, made of corten (or weather-resistant steel), concrete and black laminate siding.

The ground floor consists of a minimalist polished concrete kitchen that opens to an open plan dining and living room. The glass doors slide all the way back to open the sides of the ground floor and its flat top is covered with vegetation.

The rust-colored barn with a sloping roof creates the first floor. It houses four bedrooms each with a glass door to the view. In the black cantilever pod is the master bedroom suite which overlooks the living room.

As difficult as it was to build – the foundation is 90 meter piles that plunge through layers of sand and natural springs to sit in the chalk bed – McCloud describes it as “exceptional” and “open. of spirit “.

Wolds barn


From the disused alley to the skinny house

The couple challenged themselves to fit into a cheerful house in the narrow south-west London access road. Using a thin, hand-made steel frame rather than bricks and mortar saved them half a yard of wall, and the exposed materials in the house (like the wooden beams) are doubled in size. awesome interior design and a functional liberation of space.

There is a double height kitchen and living room on the ground floor with the entire rear of the house glazed to let in light. Upstairs is a mezzanine office which overlooks the living room, a bathroom and an office.

Slot house

/ Jim Stephenson 2019

The floor of the open space is made of cork to minimize noise and in some places they have pushed back the thin covering to create shelving. Even the stairs are fixed on the steel frame to save space.

On the outside, the pair have used hand-baked, cookie-fired glazed bricks instead of solid bricks that are a third deeper. He’s a contortionist of the building where the perfect use of materials has created a true gem of a home, says Ogundehin.

A Scottish Scandinavian fusion

An old abandoned farmhouse, which was almost windowless, has been painstakingly transformed into a reimagined stone lodge in the highlands.

Burrows visits the rental home made from locally quarried stone with a slate roof on the outside, but modern Scandinavian fixtures and fittings on the inside with parts coated and crafted from kiln-dried Danish oak. Even the toilets are cleverly hidden in natural wood joinery.

Kyle House

/ Alexandre baxter

There are also pocket doors that disappear perfectly into the walls. On the ground floor is a kitchen and living room and upstairs is the bedroom and bathroom. On the side of the building, but downstairs, the architect drilled square holes edged with wood as windows that overlook the spectacular landscape. upscale and polished by an architect who felt it was his duty to save this dilapidated old building and continue with the conversion, Burrows says.

A world of wood

As the name suggests, McCloud will then enter a world of different woods in the Grain House.

Behind a traditional Victorian terraced house in east London is a new extension made of Siberian larch batons, some charred and others left bare to withstand the elements. The new space contains a kitchen and dining room below and a small nook at the very back, then up the stairs to a bedroom, living room and bathroom.

Stairs lead up to the side around a double-height courtyard in which live trees grow. Everything belongs to husband and wife Matt and Lucy and their five year old daughter Sylvia – which means spirit of the woods.

Grain house

/ Kilian O’Sullivan

Ash, Douglas fir, oak and walnut are used for different purposes: the staircase, the floor, the atrium and the kitchen cabinets. Upstairs, strips of ash are woven together to make closet doors.

Other materials are also on display, such as Italian marble on the countertops and powder pink handmade tiles on the steps. “We get a feeling of calm just by looking at the wood,” says Matt.

A magical canopy

The last house on the long list is hidden in the Surrey Hills. At the back of a regular 1930s cottage is an incredible extension under an intricate 11-meter lattice wooden roof that extends deep into the house and far into the garden.

This magical canopy was designed to delight Theo, 10, and Oscar, eight, both born with a rare genetic and degenerative disease called Duchenne muscular dystrophy. They live here with four-year-old Luca and their parents Nick and Clara.

House for Théo and Oscar


Théo and Oscar’s “fun” rooms open onto the garden and have been designed to feel like tree houses. The roof provides shade and creates a speckled light effect on the ground. It’s both expansive and almost seems to float, but it had to be solid to hold the winches that Theo and Oscar will need.

The whole house has also been designed for wheelchair access. Such a project is expensive but a real estate developer and suppliers have gifted the expertise and the materials. The family lived for 13 months in a cabin at the back of the garden but the wait was worth it – the extension has greatly improved the boys’ lives.

Ogundehin says it shows the power and possibility of architecture.

To find out which ones will qualify for the 2021 Grand Designs: House of the Year Finals, tune in to Channel 4 at 9 p.m. tonight.