The Linked Barn: from derelict building to million pound marvel

Case Studies, General

When a dilapidated barn belonging to a Derbyshire farm was sold, its new owner envisioned transforming it into a high tech home that would combine traditional construction materials with contemporary design. Within a week of the purchase, builder Steve Corrigan and building control officer David Pratt had visited the project site to discuss its many possibilities. Work on this “million-pound house” had begun!

The Linked Barn: from derelict building to million pound marvelFrom the start of this ambitious project, David Pratt worked closely with Steve Corrigan, whose detailed plans demonstrated how the conversion would comply with building regulations. Having seen the results of Steve’s previous projects, David knew that the builder would carry out this new conversion with passion, care and attention to detail.

Because the Linked Barn’s new owner wanted to do the original barn justice as well as bringing it into the 21st century, the architect came up with a design that featured a traditional front and a contemporary rear extension. Some of the property’s original construction materials would be recycled and stone masons would use stone from the site to create an internal dry stone wall. When the original architect retired, Jillian Mitchell of Project Logistics Architecture joined the team and worked on details which have added to the quality of the project.

The interior of this luxurious conversion also includes traditional oak beams, oak agricultural doors and ornate handmade trusses that dominate the barn’s roof line. Then there’s the star of the show; a curved walnut staircase that sweeps majestically from the entrance hall to the first floor of the barn. As Jillian explains “We worked closely with Steve and Nicola to review the plans and see if we could add value to the project. The Hall is a majestic space, and the original stairs didn’t celebrate the opportunities; we sketched out something more theatrical, and made sure that the position of the stairs in the Hall space worked with the flow through the building.”

The Linked Barn’s modern extension features a stylish cantilever roof and full height glazed walls that have transformed the rear of the property into a modern open plan kitchen and living area. The barn’s owner was also keen to bring the outdoors, indoors, an effect which the architect has achieved by adding sliding doors that open out effortlessly onto a patio. A curved walnut dividing wall smoothes the transition from the modern glass link into the original building.

Most building projects come across problems at some point, and The Linked Barn’s conversion was no exception. Fortunately, building control’s Stuart Franklin was available to offer advice and make sure that solutions met regulatory standards. His expert knowledge of the predominantly clay ground conditions was particularly valuable, as clay can be unstable, resulting in subsidence and heave.

The Linked Barn: from derelict building to million pound marvelWhen it came to the interior of the barn conversion, there was a problem with the flat roof area, which sagged following installation. However, Steve was able to solve this himself by meeting with the suppliers of the roof joists. Drainage of surface water was also a challenge, which was solved by gaining the Local Environment Agency’s permission to discharge any rainwater into a local stream.

Like most barns, the Linked Barn is of a single skin construction, meaning that there’s no cavity between the walls. To create a cavity for insulation, building control surveyors helped the project team to design and build new interior walls. The barn also features an incredibly efficient energy saving heating system based around solar thermal collectors, which charge two 1000L heat stores. Every evening, these release a day’s worth of solar energy which powers the underfloor heating system and provides most of the hot water that’s needed. Occasional top ups come from a gas-fired condensing boiler.

The Linked Barn also makes the most of smart technology, which helps to keep running costs so low that the property’s energy performance rivals that of some new builds. Smart technology provides carbon monoxide, fire, heat and smoke detection, while smart fans control the property’s humidity, temperature and air quality. Entry to the home is via biometric recognition.

David Pratt claims that the standard of workmanship achieved by Steve and his team is the highest he has ever seen. While Steve’s motto “workmanship over time” allowed for a flexible finishing date, the excellent communication between the project team and their building control officer meant that every milestone was reached on time, despite the problems that arose.

The Linked Barn has far exceeded its owners’ requirements, providing them with a unique, stylish and economical home that blends perfectly into its beautiful surroundings.The Linked Barn: from derelict building to million pound marvel

Project Team


Project Logistics Architecture, Jillian Mitchell – 01246 580405

Building Control

Derbyshire Building Control Partnership, David Pratt & Stuart Franklin – 0333 880 2000


Lynnic Associates Ltd, Stephen Corrigan – 01246 268591

Homeowner Guide

Derbyshire BCP Guide to Extending Your Home

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