The house I visited on Wednesday was located on the cutest road in Stretford. If you haven’t been to Trafford Grove it is a must-see location. These terraced houses are unusual, with their reverse entrance access. The way to the front leads from the internal alley in between two sets of terraced houses.
These are two-bedroom homes that have got planning permission for two-storey extensions at the back, as part of a former revitalisation program. This allows these little houses to become more spacious inside.
Gerard just bought one on this street. He said that they had been waiting a couple of years to finally manage to reserve and then purchase the house. After their kids moved out, he and Catherine decided to move back to Manchester and re-design their own place into a dream home.
As the only house on the street without a two-storey extension, Gerard wanted to fill in this gap between the neighbours and gain a large bedroom at the back. He also didn’t like the staircase that currently was sitting in the middle of his living room. Struggling to redesign the kitchen layout on his own, he asked me (Magda) for help. One of Gerard’s priorities was to fit in the high-mounted oven and a fridge and still have plenty of worktop surface in the kitchen.
Because we knew that we would move the staircase, we started the design process from the first floor. Gerard wanted to have a roof light above the stairs and a bit of air in the heart of it, so we first defined how much space the staircase will take upstairs. We also defined the size of the bathroom and showed the sizes of the front and back bedroom.
We were very happy with the first option, and Gerard even didn’t want to look at more cost-efficient solutions. We made a minimalistic bathroom with a large shower, but without the bath tub.
Gerard was one of the clients that had thought things through a lot, so we followed his idea of the staircase and its new location. When we drew it out, it turned out that it took up a bit too much space. An excessively large staircase made the kitchen too crammed.
With a bit of a tweak, we changed the staircase into a straight one running along the wall. That allowed better space for the kitchen design.
Full wall larder cabinets and high-level oven were the must-have boxes to be ticked.
In the end, we found an option that Gerard didn’t think of before, and we went through several others, considering their pros and cons.
We decided that the Mediterranean style patio with benches and potted plants hanging from the walls would be the best direction to go regarding the backyard design.
Contact our Manchester architects team if you’d like help with redesigning your home.
When I arrived at my client’s place, I was surprised at what a gem this location was with its cosy street style.