Every now and again a truly beautiful project comes along, and this was certainly the case with this luxury dressage yard in the Cotswolds. Equine Construction, along with sister company Equine planning, were asked to design and build the new facilities for this new concept in equestrian living.
The challenge was to take the existing agricultural building (115m long x 15m wide), with concrete panels for side walls and a fibre cement roof, and transform it into a stunning and unique American Barn. The brief boasted beautiful features such as archways, brick detailing and beautiful powder coated Victorian style stables.
The building had the steel uprights every 6-metres so it was always going to be a challenge finding a layout which worked and gave us the required centrally located windows within each stable. We overcame this by placing the ancillary rooms and wash bays in such a way as to accommodate the windows centrally into each stable.
The next challenge was to design the building in a way that would break up the long barn and transform a tired agricultural building into a luxurious stable yard. Equine Planning, therefore, went about designing 3 separate areas within the barn. By reducing the width in the central walkway to 3.6-metres this allowed for wider areas for ancillary rooms either side of the corridor. This area is approached by stunning arched doorways from either end, with the corridor being designed with a barrelled ceiling.
Internal Crittal arched doors lead into the sumptuous riders lounge, tack rooms and a bespoke mahogany locker room on one side, and client and staff facilities on the other.
Each of the three areas contain 8 or 9 stables with separate tack rooms, feed rooms, wash bay and solaria. This has created a more private and less commercial feel to the property that aims to offer riders a more relaxed social atmosphere. Stable fronts were designed with sweeping fronts, keeping the feel of curves and arches throughout. The powder coating of the stables are designed to match that of the arched stable windows, as well as to compliment the bespoke brickwork.
The initial construction involved stripping off the existing roof and side panels, to take it back to the steel structure. After a professional clean the galvanised steel frame looked like new and from this point our renovations could begin in earnest. A cavity construction of block work formed the external walls, with a stone plinth and stone cills under the new arched windows allowing natural light and ventilation into the stables. The external walls were rendered to be in keeping with surrounding buildings.
The roof was clad in a 40mm Composite insulated roof which will keep the building cool in the summer but retain warmth in the winter. Clear sheets were strategically positioned to allow for maximum natural light with an open vented ridge to aid air circulation.
Internally all blockwork was rendered with brick detailing around all the beautiful arched doorways that continued with a brick plinth at low level and again at the top of the walls creating a magnificent look throughout.
The 3 separate wash bay areas were designed and built in rendered blockwork with blue Staffordshire bull nose bricks to portray the natural lines of the horse and to match in with the general internal feel of the building
The riders lounge, tack room and accompanying rest rooms were designed and fitted out by the client to reflect her design and taste. A five star hotel for horses as one national newspaper referred to it !