Oliver's Yard, Midhurst, West Sussex

Oliver’s Yard was a small workshop, comprising a fairly unattractive group of single storey buildings for the owner’s upholstery business, which he had outgrown. Set very close to the centre of the town of Midhurst, the property is surrounded mainly by mixed Victorian cottages that make up the strong character of this residential area.

The brief was to design a small detached house on the very restricted site only 6 metres wide, by way of replacement of the workshops, not as a retail development but for the owner and his family.

The solution was a simple two storey cottage with a third floor in the roof space, providing four bedrooms on the two upper floors and two rooms, entrance hall and cloakroom on the ground floor.

Having only front and back for daylight and views, full use was made of those elevations to maximise daylight whilst at the same time maintaining the principle style, proportions and traditions of the surrounding Victorian cottages.

This is a simple solution, but attention to external and internal detail gives the finished building some character and with its very central location, provides a highly sustainable and attractive family dwelling.

The main contractor on this project was Norling Read Construction