In the lead: Will William and Kate be getting their own house built?

In the lead: Will William and Kate be getting their own house built?

There’s much fevered speculation surrounding Kate Middleton’s wedding dress, but in the property world, everyone’s talking about where the royal couple will call home.

Word has it that when Prince William’s posting at RAF Valley in Anglesey comes to an end in 2013, the young royals will move to the Harewood End Estate, near Ross-on-Wye in Herefordshire.

The estate was bought by the Prince of Wales’s Duchy of Cornwall in 2000. there was a fine country house on the site, before it fell into disrepair.

In 2007, Prince Charles obtained outline planning consent for a replacement dwelling and two detailed schemes have been approved. A royal self-build is set to take place, though exactly who will live there is uncertain. But it could well become the country seat of a future monarch.

And to that end, Homebuilding And Renovating magazine commissioned three of Britain’s leading house designers — Pete Tonks, Meredith Bowles and Stephen Mattick — to design a home fit for William and Kate. They were asked to follow the principles of sustainable design and use the  approved dwelling as a guide for scale.

‘We understand that Prince Charles would like to see an eco-friendly and contemporary update of the old manor house on the site,’ says Jason Orme, the magazine’s editor.

Mattick was involved in the Poundbury Architectural Review Committee and some of his designs feature in The Prince of Wales’s book, A Vision Of Britain.

He made a name for himself in the Eighties and Nineties converting and designing attractive new houses, based on the local style in East Anglia. He has continued to specialise in the local style and won several architectural awards.

His plan for the royal couple is a departure — it’s much larger for a start. ‘It’s around 1,022 sq m and designed so the couple can evolve into it. My house, which would be built in local stone, is flexible enough for the longer term,’he says.

He has allowed space to accommodate staff, a nanny and children.

Meredith Bowles, who won the 2010 RIBA Spirit of Ingenuity Award for Sustainability, is known for unusual and innovative homes, from a flat-roofed contemporary solar house, to an extraordinary cantilevered barn in Suffolk.

‘It’s an interesting site in the middle of parkland, next to the classical stable courtyard. The plans Prince Charles has approved are squarish, sombre, almost mausoleum-like,’ says Bowles.

Historic Ross-on-Wye: It is rumoured that the young royals will move to the Harewood End Estate in Herefordshire

Historic Ross-on-Wye: It is rumoured that the young royals will move to the Harewood End Estate in Herefordshire

He suggests a 720 sq m, four-storey house with a courtyard and sunny, walled garden.

‘Walled gardens give you privacy, shelter and are safe for children. Like the house that’s been designed for Prince Charles, it takes its cues from the stable block with colonnades and round-headed windows,’ he says. ‘We’ve created something that might appeal more to a newly-married couple.’

His house is romantic and fun with five bedrooms and an attic floor. It resembles a dovecot with a white painted timber exterior above a stone or brick base.


Traditional: Stephen Mattick opts for local stone

Traditional: Stephen Mattick opts for local stone

Timber frame: Pete Tonks's dramatic gothic design

Timber frame: Pete Tonks’s dramatic gothic design

Courtyard: Meredith Bowles's plan

Courtyard: Meredith Bowles’s plan

Bowles is working on four large four-bedroom houses in Notting Hill, West London for developer  Baylight, destined for sale in 18 months’ time.

Pete Tonks works with English oak to make traditionally framed homes. He has also designed much smaller two/three-bedroom properties and contemporary builds. He worked for Potton, one of the largest self-build timber frame companies, for 20 years, but started his own company, PJT Designs, in 2003.

‘I am inspired by historic houses, particularly the gothic period. I chose to design my house with a gothic revival exterior,’ says Tonks. ‘I was tempted to do a modernist glass cube, but thought this might not be to Prince Charles’s taste, so decided to keep it traditional. I would like it to have a timber frame,  which is a sustainable form of construction.’

Tonks’s plan has five en-suite bedrooms, with a large master bedroom with a dressing room and balcony. The interior encourages free-flowing family life with clever use of space, galleries, double height ceilings and lots of glazing.

There are several plots of land for sale around Britain that have planning permission for houses designed by Tonks. In Otford, near Sevenoaks, Kent, an acre plot with planning consent for a four-bedroom, timber-frame, single-storey house has just gone under offer. It was on at £425,000 (Strutt & Parker, 01732 459900).

In Flitton, Beds, a 700 sq m plot with planning permission for a four-bedroom house is available for £250,000, and in Catworth, Cambs, a quarter-acre plot with consent for a contemporary house is £200,000 (both

Finding a plot is harder than building your own home. ‘An acre plot with planning permission varies from £140,000 in Scotland to around £750,000 in Surrey,’ says Jason Orme. ‘Don’t buy a plot without current planning permission. There are lots of scams around.’

None of the three bespoke houses has been priced by its architect, but a self-builder should look at spending £600 to £700 per sq m. A project manager would spend around £1,100 per sq m; building a contemporary, high-spec home would cost around £2,000 per sq m.

However there is no VAT on materials and building costs. So once you have the completion certificate, you can claim back the VAT.

Source: Daily Mail UK

965 N Ten Mile Dr. , Unit A1 Frisco, CO 80443
Phone: 970-453-2230

Email: information at trilogybuilds dot com
Facebook: TrilogyPartners
Twitter: @trilogybuilds
Instagram: trilogybuilds
Youtube: The Trilogy Partners Channel
Houzz: trilogy-partners