Tuesday 30 August 2011

The Border Oak porch

When Ben and I built our first Border Oak cottage 10 years ago the planners insisted we couldn't have oak framing externally (because our plot was adjacent to a medieval oak frame and they felt people would be 'confused' by a new frame - madness!) It doesn't sound that much of an issue looking back  but 10 years ago virtually all Border Oak houses were exposed oak frames and it was a very popular style (and still is). 
I remember feeling a bit cheated because my dad had revived green oak framing after 200 years and here I was being prevented from building with it.  Luckily Dad invented a whole new building system combining SIPs with an internal oak frame just for us and we decided to be the first to try the system for size. He quickly drew, on a scrap of paper, an oak framed porch to make the Arts and Crafts inspired lime rendered cottage more interesting. The end result was Pearmain Cottage and since then we have built hundreds of bespoke Pearmains all over the UK. 
And the pretty Border Oak porch has taken on a life of it's own.....................as these pictures show our oak frame porch design works on all sorts of houses. We even sell it as a flat pack for people to add onto non Border Oak houses. Fabulous!


  1. You have to wonder what the planners think about sometimes. I can't imagine anything *more* in keeping with old oak buildings. Just bizarre that they would try to stop this gorgeousness....

    Well done you for pressing on!


  2. Defintaly bizzare! The planners do baffle me. Hmmm now you have me thinking of porches, I have a 1930's house, which is crying out for a porch. x

  3. PS, the magazine brochure sounds exciting and sorry to give you the idea of a book, or should I be saying sorry to your husband lol x

  4. yes, Ben did laugh (or scoff?) when I told him about your idea/my next 'project'. I think he was keen for me to finish the website and the magazine first.......the trouble with men is their lack of 'multi - tasking' aptitude!
    But I bet he will eat his words if you were to buy a Border Oak porch though - ha ha ha!
    And do you know it took 14 months to get our first house approved - and 4 weeks for our second house 3 years later. the plots are in the same village and the house design exactly the same from the front! bizarre indeed.