Upper Hayne Farm is a 210m2 private dwelling sited in open countryside just off a small country lane, which replaced a redundant agricultural worker’s bungalow. The context is very rural, low and open, with the site masked from the lane by a tall hedge. The outlook is generally to the north, with inspiring, extensive views over arable land to the gently rising hills around Brill.

We designed a simple T shape plan in concept, where 2 courtyards were formed on the southern side and the northern half could accommodate all the habitable rooms and address the landscape. This helped create a sense of arrival (and privacy) by entering off the lane into the first enclosed courtyard, with a second courtyard (the summer garden) shielded from view by a division wall running north/south through the land and the house. External walls became an important design driver, allowing us to create enclosure (in the manner of the farm buildings and hedges) with clerestory lighting behind them, so that sun can percolate into the north-facing living and bedrooms. Apart from a master bedroom suite at first floor, the accommodation is all at grade, providing accessibility for the owners. The house is of timber construction with its first floor finished in anthra-zinc, to help reduce the scale, and to articulate the enclosing perimeter walls at ground floor.