Architect: BBM Sustainable Design
Positioned on the edge of parkland in the St Helen’s Wood area of Hastings, this remarkable four-bedroom house was built by the current owners and completed in 2009 to a design by BBM Sustainable Design. The house perches atop a hillside plot, overlooking an intriguing garden inspired by the owners’ travels through the rainforests of Brazil.
The house, clad in cedar, is located on a quiet no-through road and approached via a gravel driveway with parking space for two cars. Internal accommodation extends to approximately 1,800 sq ft and is arranged over three levels. Entry is to an open-plan ground floor with kitchen, dining area, and living room. Front-facing clerestory windows and floor-to-ceiling glazing across the rear aspect flood the space with natural light. Glazed sliding doors open over the dining area and to a decked balcony, with an eye-level view into the canopy of trees, and to the terrace and garden below.
An oak staircase with steel and glass balustrade ascends to the first floor which comprises the master bedroom with walk-in wardrobe and en-suite shower room.
On the lower ground floor is a utility room, a large bathroom finished in black slate, and three double-bedrooms with underfloor heating throughout. The two larger bedrooms have built-in wardrobes and the wonderful use of glazing continues with access to the rear decked terrace.
The garden, in its maturity and dramatic contours, offers an overwhelming sense of secluded wilderness. Steps made from railway sleepers meander through the captivating landscape of the steep decline to an insulated and dry-lined summer house with picture window and sliding doors to a decked area looking out over a stream at the foot of the garden.
The house, which is super-insulated, operates an air source heat pump, MVHR unit (mechanically ventilated heat recovery unit), and employs a rainwater harvesting system.
Hillside Road, on which the property is located, is less than 100 metres from St Helen’s Wood, a 104-acre nature reserve of ancient woodland and wildflower meadows. It is within walking distance of Ore railway station, from which trains to London take approximately 1 hour 50 minutes. Hastings railway station is also a short drive away, from where more regular direct trains run to London (journey time to Charing Cross 1 hour 30 minutes). The house is approximately two miles from the seafront and central Hastings. Nearby Hastings Old Town provides a good range of shops and cafes and there is green space at the popular Alexandra Park nearby.
The East Sussex coast is well known not only for its beaches (Pett Level and Winchelsea being perhaps the best beaches in the Hastings area) but also for its thriving arts scene. The De La Warr pavilion in Bexhill, an iconic Modernist building, has a renowned arts programme and, in Hastings itself is the Jerwood Gallery.
Please note that all areas, measurements and distances given in these particulars are approximate and rounded. The text, photographs and floor plans are for general guidance only. The Modern House has not tested any services, appliances or specific fittings — prospective purchasers are advised to inspect the property themselves. All fixtures, fittings and furniture not specifically itemised within these particulars are deemed removable by the vendor.
BBM Sustainable Design
BBM Sustainable Design was formed on the back of a competition win in 1993. The RIBA chartered practice is based near Lewes, East Sussex. BBM is an award-winning architecture practice specialising in environmentally benign buildings. With decades of experience designing and delivering projects across a range of scales and budgets, from village halls to private houses, they are known for exquisitely detailed material palettes and light-filled spaces.
Drawing inspiration from the local landscape, their architecture has a close relationship with the natural world. Harvesting both renewable energy and construction materials from the immediate project site, in turn preventing waste and creating savings for their clients. Each finished project is imbued with a sense of belonging and connection to its context. This design approach is particularly successful within historic urban settings and protected landscapes such as the South Downs National Park. Our practice pioneers sustainable construction materials and processes, keeping them at the cutting edge of theoretical design and practical application. This ongoing research and development improves the cost-effectiveness and longevity of their projects. They pride themelves on providing a discrete, stress-free, and enjoyable service for our clients at every stage.