S&B house-Hannan Street Williamstown


A grand house in a beautiful street in Williamstown complemented by a grand design.
All photography-GLOW design group.


It was great to be offered such a Grand Victorian to work on and to design and document the extension. The house is located in one of my favourite streets in Williamstown Melbourne. This historic area has strong heritage controls, and the ideas behind the design lie in the heritage guidelines for the area.

The single storey extension is quite a relief to neighbors. With so many double storey extensions going up around the area whenever plans are done people instantly think of double storey additions overlooking and overshadowing their dwelling. This extension was designed to be separate to the the existing using the link method of joining the old and new. I wanted to keep ceiling heights at the same level as the existing so there would not be the feeling of walking from a Grand open Victorian, into a cramped new area. This would need to be signed off by the neigbours, but was not hard to do due to a good rapport and also the relief that this could have been double storey.




We aimed to keep a hip roof to the addition. There have been a lot of skillion roofed extensions in the area; this works for some, but  some have dated rapidly. We wanted a more classical style.

The link to the new section needed to have a dropped roofline to fit in under the existing. We discussed this as best we could by putting the services in this area, and using doorways to open to the link area. The link is good for regulating the experience. The roof goes down, then opens up giving an open feeling on entering the large main room.

Some clients are going for large rectangular open living areas, but recently more clients have been asking for separate zones within this area. This led to the kitchen being placed in its own zone.





Above-Before and after plans of the extension.

The link that is often a part of separating the historic house from the new is a small insert at the join of the two. It can be used to allow light and ventilation through additional windows which bring light and ventilation to the core. In some houses the build is on or within 900mm of the boundary which means that direct windows may not be allowed directly due to fire safety reasons. The link can have windows without this risk.



Keeping with our environmental approach to the design we were able to integrate general features into this design which are part of our specifications. The sub-floor was lined with foam under-panel insulation as we had also used for the J-house. This is good in that it clips under, and will not be affected by moisture. It also has a reflective layer that bulk insulation does not. We also specified polyester insulation to the wall cavities. This was to make zones throughout the house, and polyester chosen for its non allergen attributes and its ability to be recycled.

The ceiling was lined with reflective foil and masses of bulk earthwool  insulation. Windows are all plantation timber and double glazed.



Above-Part of the interior design was to test various materials and colours. In the case above it was the colour of the kitchen cabinetry.  We are fortunate to have great software that allows a three dimensional walk-through, and also the ability to put fabrics and the like on the objects in our design that can then be photo rendered to test the look. With this design it was good to have the help of Sylvia that assisted with items like natural light for applying makeup and which hand may be used to hold a hairdryer when setting out electrical plans.


BELOW-Pre Renovation Left Post Renovation Right

PRE RENOVATION GALLERY-Below. Click to view gallery