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FIRST LOOK

A different kind of Apple store: pH+ converts agricultural barn into family home

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Located in the ‘Goudhurst Fruit Belt’, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Kent, this home was created by transforming a former apple packing station

The project required the scale structure and agricultural character of the original building to be retained, as well as its part-business designation, which has seen the building become both a living and working space, housing a yoga studio and photography workshop.

Due to the large span of the industrial roof, large open plan spaces have been created, which can be divided by sliding plywood doors.

15 ph+ apple store tim soar

The Apple Store by pH+

Source: Tim Soar

Architect’s view

The communal areas at ground level and the cellular private spaces above are all oriented around a triple-height internal courtyard in the centre of the house. The generous volume of this space can be used as a workshop, yoga studio or badminton court, located underneath original metal beams, which are exposed but painted white to match the cool interior finishes.

The main living spaces feature large aperture windows framing key vistas to the surrounding woodland. In spring an apple orchard will be planted on site as a continuation of the ‘Goudhurst Fruit Belt’, serving as a reminder of the history of the site.

The apple store ground & first floor plans 1 200 scale

The Apple Store by pH+, floor plans

Source: pH+

Ground floor (below) and first floor (above)

Low-cost materials have been used throughout the project in inventive ways to deliver interiors of affordable luxury, and throughout the home polished concrete floors flow seamlessly from one room to another. The building is topped by a corrugated metal roof, featuring private terraces and refurbished extract cowls that are now chimneys for the log-burning stoves below.

The Apple Store is divided, with flexible studios and workspaces to the east and living areas to the west. A 5 x 10m swimming pool is located at the furthest end of the building, including a large glazed opening looking out on to the adjacent woods. This aspect remains hidden from neighbouring properties, offering the family privacy while swimming. The home sensitively retains and celebrates the utilitarian and agricultural DNA of the building, while showcasing beautifully and carefully considered modern interventions throughout the space. The combination of the historic and contemporary provides a large canvas for ever-changing living patterns which will evolve with the family.

Project data

Start on site 
January 2015
Completion June 2016
Gross internal floor area 900m²
Form of contract Traditional
Construction cost Undisclosed 
Architect 
pH+
Client 
Private
Structural engineer R&J Structural Solutions Ltd
Planning consultant Judith Norris
Project manager pH+
CDM coordinator
 pH+
Approved building inspector Assent
Main contractor BCS Builders
CAD software used 
Vectorworks

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