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North Acre, Dorset

Replacement windows dorset

North Acre, Dorset

North Acre is a stunning five-bedroom barn conversion, situated on the top of a hill with breath-taking views over the rolling countryside just north of Shaftesbury, on the edge of the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Owners Vanessa & Bruce Jones had always wanted to build their own home in the countryside, so they were delighted when, after a long search, they found a large plot of land with an old disused steel framed agricultural building.

The 400 square metre south facing rectangular building, which had previously been used as a cattle shed, had massive potential to be converted into their new dream home.

“As soon as we saw North Acre, we were wowed by its awesome location and immediately knew that, with the right design, this old industrial looking farm building could be transformed into a light and airy, modern open plan eco home for our family,” said Vanessa Jones.    

Undemonstrative design

In designing the conversion, Campbell Jackson Architects sought to embrace the sheer scale, shape and utilitarian simplicity of the structure. 

“We believe in creating buildings that are beautiful and right for their place, by undercovering and exploiting the uniqueness of each project within its context. In this case, we were keen to retain the barn’s anonymity within the rural landscape by minimising obvious external signs of domesticity, whilst welcoming the spectacular views into its light filled interior spaces” said Jamie Campbell.

Keeping within the existing building footprint on the original concrete hardstanding, the core steel framework supports a metal clad roof, which together with pre-cast concrete panels at low-level and expansive stretches of unfinished Siberian larch cladding, give an undemonstrative contemporary feel. 

Carefully framed views

The design of the south facing elevation is more expressive in responding to the almost operatic views, which were carefully framed through a series of landscape Tilt and Turn windows and Lift and Slide doors from Gowercroft Joinery. 

“We were looking for high quality traditional timber windows and doors to blend in with the concrete lintels, and particularly the Siberian larch external cladding, which will gradually weather over time from its original blond colour to give a paler sun-bleached look,” said Jamie.  

“We first came across Gowercroft’s windows and doors at the ‘Photography Studio for Juergen Teller’, when it was shortlisted for the 2017 Stirling Prize.  The silver-grey translucent finish, which reveals the simplicity of the Accoya® grain pattern beneath, had exactly the right tone and contemporary aesthetic we were looking to achieve.” 

During the course of the project Gowercroft supplied 22 Accoya® tilt and turn windows and four doors, finished in their exclusive semi-transparent grey finish, which provide a natural flow between interior living spaces as well as offering views into an exquisite indoor winter garden.

Specially developed for Gowercroft in Italy, the micro-porous protective finish will ensure long lasting performance that is virtually maintenance free.

The completed project

“We are delighted with our new home. Campbell Jackson Architects’ extraordinary design has given life to our original vision in more ways than we could have imagined, and this is made complete by the quality and beauty of the timber windows and doors.” said Vanessa Jones.    

“The Gowercroft team went over and above in making sure that no detail was overlooked  – both technically and aesthetically – so that their window and doors were the perfect match for our new home.”

Photographs courtesy of David Grandorge.


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