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Ground Floor Plan of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.
First Floor Plan of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.
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Bryan and Roberta's Completed Self-Build House.
The lounge and Vaulted Ceiling of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.
Another View of the Lounge of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.
Rear View of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.

Our Self Build House and Timber Barn

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CLICK FOR MORE PICTURES OF HOUSE DURING CONSTRUCTION

Ground Floor Plan

Lounge

Dining

Kitchen

Garage

Utility

Library

Master Bedroom

Cellar

Wine

Down

to

Bedroom 3

Vaulted Ceiling Over Lounge

Bedroom 2

Bedroom 4

Hobbies Room

Gallery

First Floor Plan

Roberta

Bryan

Bryan and Roberta Downes at the start of their Self-Build House.
Roberta Working onBryan Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.

This is Bryan and Roberta's second self build house project (the first was completed in the 1960's) This second self build project was completed when Bryan was aged 59 years and Roberta was aged 57 years - just past the first flush of youth, and was truely self build with all work done entirely by themselves.  Roberta drew the plans, a local architect refined them and obtained planning and building regulation approval, and they began! Setting out was quite tricky on account of the sloping site and the complicated layout. However, this was achieved using no more than a steel tape measure and a simple water guage for levels. With no previous experience, Bryan's bricklaying skill was learned on the job,getting better as the foundations grew but never achieving the speed of a professional! Roberta mixed all the mortar and carried bricks and blocks etc. It was really hard work with completion of foundations, cellar and beam and block floor in just six months. However, the Ashdown Pevensey Stock facing brickwork and internal blockwork took a further 18 months! Next came the roof timbers which were all individually cut and fitted as roof trusses were considered less suitable.

This was followed by laying the Staffordshire Blue hand-made roof tiles by Daniel Platt  - Roberta refusing to carry these up on to the roof due to the height! The completed shell of the house including all glazing and fitting of external doors brought the duration of the build to about four years, and was rewarded with a well-earned roof wetting party! The next stage was first fixing of electric wireing, plumbing and pipework and internal door casings. Also, as you will see from the pictures, quite an amount of "green" oak was used in the construction of the vaulted roof of the Lounge and was cut,shaped and jointed on the floor of the garage. All that was left then was completion of the electrics: plumbing for the kitchen, utility and bathrooms; completion of the central heating system which has nine separate heating zones; and fitting the oak skirtings, achitrave, oak staircase, and the 16 internal oak doors. The final tasks remaining were: to fit out the kitchen and four bathrooms together with wall tiling. The total completion of the self build project was now over five years! However, a wonderfully comfortable, spacious, low running-cost home resulted; accompanied by a great sense of achievement.

The Self-Build House Project:-

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The Timber Frame Barn of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.

Timber Frame Barn At Side Of House

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Home

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Another View of the Front of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.

Dining

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Another Rear View of Bryan and Roberta Downes' Self-Build House.

Assistance,help and advice willingly given to anyone interested in self-build. Our self-built house is a good example of what can be achieved.