New look for Lyme Regis house cracked in half by landslide


A MODERN, floating structure on the outskirts of Lyme Regis has replaced the £900,000 holiday home cracked in half by a landslide in 2014.

The cliff-top property Crow’s Nest, in Ware, made national news after continuous landslips ripped through the building, meaning it had to be demolished.

Architects AR Design Studio were already working on plans for an extension at the chalet-style holiday home when disaster struck, and were instead tasked with designing a completely new home, which is now gaining recognition for its innovative and modern design.

The new house has been built with the potential for future land movement in mind.

In their description of the property, AR Design Studio explained: “The idea of movement and fracturing formed the backbone of the concept. Working closely with engineers Eckersley O’Callaghan, an imaginative structural solution was proposed to prevent future failure.

“A concrete slab was built into the ground, a series of strategically placed dwarf walls were then built on top of it. A floating structural frame was then laid on top of the walls to act as an adjustable raft in case of future movement. Beneath the frame, there are specific places for mechanical jacks to be positioned so that the house can be securely re-levelled.”

Commenting on the modern design, the architects continued: “The design concept starts as a traditional cabin-like-form that then splits, twists and rotates, resulting in four pods. The outcome is a beautifully haphazard rough-sawn larch clad house that silhouettes against the wooded backdrop.

“The clearly defined entrance pod, the smallest of the four, guides you through the hallway into the central pod; the main living space comprising of kitchen, dining and living room. The extensive sliding glass draws one into the stunning coastline setting, with uninterrupted views of the English Channel beyond a floating timber deck.

“The tower pod houses the large open plan master suite, situated on the first floor above a children’s bedroom, utility room and shower room on the ground floor. The right-hand pod, at the opposite end of the house, consists of the guest quarters; a bedroom, two bunk rooms, and a bathroom. This entire section of the house can be closed off when not required.

“The result is a playful and calm space for the owners to enjoy weekends with family and friends whilst taking in the spectacular and isolated location in which it sits.”

Owners Andrew and Katherine Vaughn bought the property 2011 before it was affected by landslides. The house was built in 1972 and was itself a replacement of an earlier property damaged by landslips.

Commenting on the new build, the Vaughns said: “The Crow’s Nest is situated in a fairly unique location and we always knew that it would need an architect who would not only be sympathetic to that but who would also design a stunning contemporary house that did justice to its surroundings.

“AR Design Studio have designed a house that has exceeded all our expectations. From the moment we first sat down with the team we knew they understood exactly what we were looking for. The result is a home that we absolutely love.”

Lyme Regis editor & Colyton reporter | Francesca gained a First Class Honours degree in journalism and her NCTJ qualifications at Southampton Solent University before joining the paper full-time in 2011. She is now editor of the Lyme Regis edition, as well as a sub-editor on the East Devon and South Somerset editions, and reporter for Colyton.