Architecture studio Hamish & Lyons has completed Stepping Stone House, an extension to a manor house in Berkshire, England, that is raised on stilts above a lake.
Hamish & Lyons, founded by Hamish Herford and Nicholas Lyons, replaced three underused and flood-prone outbuildings to create the new living spaces for a family with five children.
Three of the children live with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) – a behavioural disorder that can make you hyperactive – so the extension’s design is intended to provide a soothing space filled with daylight and natural materials that immerse the occupants in nature.
The larger of the two buildings provides the family with a new living space connected to the existing house’s ground floor by a structural glass bridge.
The smaller structure accommodates a self-contained guest house with a kitchen and living space, utility corridor, bathroom and a bed tucked in beneath the pitched ceiling.
Stepping Stone House is raised above the lake on steel pillars, which protects them from flood waters and makes it possible to swim underneath them.
“The minimal steel structure was designed to give the impression of the building floating over water,” the architects suggested.
“Light bouncing off the water reveals the building’s undercroft, where the black steel ribs are highlighted against the white corrugated floor deck.”Both structures are topped with sloping roofs featuring exaggerated eaves that shade the interiors from direct sunlight and provide a sheltered walkway connected to the living areas.