ProDave

Grand Designs at Graven Hill starts tonight on Channel 4

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It was good, I have found the main issue with recent GD has been that the projects are just too odd to be relevant.

 

It would have been better as two episodes, they went into hardly any detail about the builds.

 

I felt for the single woman, she seemed way over her head, I hope she can actually afford to live in the house.

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I have just watched it and I know planning was relaxed but building regs?... obviously an architect must have been involved? And an S.E. surely? What happened to her roof was a design fault and yet no mention of architect or S.E. was made and she had to stump up for the fix. 

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12 hours ago, Russell griffiths said:

The bloke building the house with the blue roof must be a saint, within 10minutes of watching I wanted to kill the old bird next door. 

 

 

The bloke next door did admit their mutual pre build enthusiasm and plan to build the two homes in sync and thus both benefit, was a bit woolly.

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Posted (edited)

Does this Street have a name and a postcode?

 

Planning docs might be interesting...

 

Update: It has a set of Lat and Long. This is on Google Maps, showing the location.

 

20190405-kevin-mccloud-thestreet-gravenhill-aerial-photo.thumb.jpg.176977f874d8ddebea7c160838b26c32.jpg

 

I think the sharpest point for me, as ever in self-build, is the blunt amount of money that is required.

 

Even here, with plots that seem to be a chunk less than the later ones, they are still needing to raise £400k, which means perhaps more towards £500k for later plots.

 

And that a single retired teacher, who has a long career in an ordinary - albeit professional / public sector (ie pension not at risk) - job, could do it. I do wonder about people more my way who do not have the property value appreciation. It's the old equation in self-build with a slightly different context.

 

Ferdinand

 

Edited by Ferdinand

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Watched it last night. The editorial bias was close to obscene. Doubt we'll watch GD again. I can stand on a bridge over the M6 and watch cars crash any day.

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11 minutes ago, recoveringacademic said:

Watched it last night. The editorial bias was close to obscene. Doubt we'll watch GD again. I can stand on a bridge over the M6 and watch cars crash any day.

I thought it was a more realistic portrayal than you normally ever see on grand designs.  It did feel a bit uncomfortable watching that poor woman have a melt down but these things happen when you start building.  

I would have been making the  architect or structural engineer pay for the roof.  It was designed wrong and failed and could have been a lot worse if it had slid another inch. 

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3 hours ago, Declan52 said:

  It was designed wrong and failed and could have been a lot worse if it had slid another inch. 

Or if it had not failed so early but failed later when the house was occupied.

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On 04/04/2019 at 22:04, Russell griffiths said:

Anybody know the make of the blue steel roof. 

Tata steel roof but we bought ours through Catnic although it is the same system

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Were those Gyspum Gyptone acoustic boards on the ceiling of the blue-steel one? I am interested in those for mine.

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Finally got around to watching episode 1 this evening. Got to admire them for having the balls, never mind the energy, but if that was supposed to encourage/inspire others to self-build then I can only think many of those Graven Hill plots will remain vacant for some time to come!

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9 hours ago, NSS said:

Finally got around to watching episode 1 this evening. Got to admire them for having the balls, never mind the energy, but if that was supposed to encourage/inspire others to self-build then I can only think many of those Graven Hill plots will remain vacant for some time to come!

 

When I renovated a cottage in Shropshire a friend said their friends were thinking of doing the same so I lent them my scrapbook of photos showing the work involved (it was very derelict and I lived in a caravan), last I heard they put a deposit down on a new house 😱

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Any one used the insulated roof "beams", or something quite similar, the couple used for their roof? How did the cost compare to a more conventional roof of rafters and insulation?

 

TIA.

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This time one couple split up and he then could not afford to finish so is living in a barely habitable house, but with a lovely garden.

 

Next door a floating staircase that is completely devoid of any handrails. And the treads bend when you step on them.

 

Both over budget. 

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13 minutes ago, ProDave said:

 

This time one couple split up and he then could not afford to finish so is living in a barely habitable house, but with a lovely garden.

 

 

Wonder if he got his VAT back yet? 😉

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54 minutes ago, ProDave said:

Next door a floating staircase that is completely devoid of any handrails. And the treads bend when you step on them.

 

The couple had obviously watched that many episodes of Grand Designs that they thought such a staircase was mandatory in new builds 😉

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TBH I was very impressed with both the people building last night, I don’t have many good thoughts regarding the younger generation and think the majority of 20-30 year olds are a bunch of wasters, however I was pleasantly surprised by the chubby lad and his misses. 

Well done to both builders, ( I was going to say couples, but she gave him the elbow) hope he finds a better model and the old one is jealous as hell. 

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I was very impressed with both “couples”.  The now single chap will get there and from the look of the outside will do a brilliant job of the inside.  I loved the “make do” attitude and willingness to re-use stuff wherever possible.  Fabric first builds first and foremost.  Although the yellow door was ................. noticeable!

 

Our world is in in good hands with youngsters like these.

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Yes a shame for the young chap who’s partner left but you need to be made of strong stuff to survive a self build, I do always wonder how these staircases pass building control and I think they may live to regret it once they have wee ones running around 

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Made me just want to go down, and lend a hand. even if it was just lugging stuff around for someone for a day. So much better than the normal GD's. I stopped watching that a few years ago. Good luck to them all.

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So far this series seems to be bucking the trend as far as GD goes, as all the builds featured so far have been pretty damned impressive.  Got to admire the way that chap managed to scrounge so much stuff, good stuff, too, from the look of it.

 

About the only consistent feature with older GD programmes seems to be the failure to comply with building regs, especially with staircases.  I can only assume that GD feel that stairs always look better without the mandatory balustrades, so film the programmes before these are fitted and the house has been signed off.

 

 

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I wish they would go into a bit of detail about the structure.  e.g one built with block on the flat (to give lots of t****** m***)  So what insulates the building?  It appeared to be bare block inside so presumably some insulation between the block and the cladding?  It would have been nice to know.

 

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Posted (edited)

I thought it was on Fridays.

 

Oooops.

 

Since a family member has just confessed that she thought it was Saturday, I have part of the morning free to watch it 😛.

 

[update : just went to watch it online. “Ad one of ten”. Nooooooooooooooooo...  It feels like Homer Simpson and the Electronic Voting Machine

 

 

]

 

Edited by Ferdinand

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The street are the first 10 plots at Graven Hill, hence why we call them the Pioneer plots. Or more formally, Phase 0.

 

Phase 1A is being undertaken now, with #35-45 in the north east all nearing completion or done, as are most of the houses from #71-95 and #118-135 (wood crescent) in the south east

 

#148 to 177 in the south centre are currently starting, as you can see below from out plot foundations at #156. Neighbour behind (two plots in between, see plinths) with the crescent to the right, and affordable housing done and going up to the left.

 

234512115_20190331-Supportingwalls(3).thumb.jpg.4ff6621331ac9fec28cd5e0340dbbccd.jpg

 

On 04/04/2019 at 21:09, ProDave said:

I thought plot prices as talked about on here at Graven Hill were WAY higher than that.

 

Yup, far more. These plots were quite discounted I believe to help kick-start the Graven Hill programme so they could start marketing and pointing to active projects.

 

Ours was £255k for just shy of 500m2, which was £20 more than we'd been told when we'd originally approached Graven Hill, and £75k more than estimated back in 2015.

 

Equivalent plots in phase 1B (to the west) have been on sale for a bit now and are about £315-320k, such as #276 for example. They're increasing the number of floor levels from 2 to 3 to increase GIA to bump the price up for the same land. Starting to get a bit too greedy now methinks as the uptake and start of new plots has slowed down quite a bit. Suspect they're having cash flow issues due to everything being much prolonged with them as bureaucratic middle men/women.

 

Have a browse at their plots here: https://www.gravenhill.co.uk/map/

 

 

On 04/04/2019 at 22:06, TheMitchells said:

The original theme of Graven Hill was that all the houses would be passivhaus but as things finally got going and plots/plot passports were developed, the passivhaus aspect had mysteriously disappeared. which is a shame.

 

yes, I recall that too. They dropped it in favour of the code for sustainable homes which the government was pushing between 2010-15. Had to have 5 our of 6 stars through some points based system. That died when the government dropped it.

 

They settled on plot passports instead, which have a chapter on the performance and sustainability requirements. See the full thing here: https://www.gravenhill.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/1982-p-p-c-plot-0156-33.pdf

 

image.png.7a120fe440e553058ffe0286736e7cca.png

 

 

On 05/04/2019 at 20:57, joe90 said:

I have just watched it and I know planning was relaxed but building regs?... obviously an architect must have been involved? And an S.E. surely? What happened to her roof was a design fault and yet no mention of architect or S.E. was made and she had to stump up for the fix. 

 

No, defiantly not. I was very surprised that Graven Hill allowed some of that to be aired at all. Guess they don't get any editorial say?

 

It has taken us two years between reserving and starting to dig foundations jumping through all the hoops. Not just with Planning, Engineering and Structural control, but also via Graven Hill themselves.

 

Planning was the only easy bit, everything else has an additional layer of bureaucracy one really doesn't need in a stressful self build... We have to file forms for every little bit and pay fees for stuff one would just be able to do normally. We legally own the land, but are treated as if we don't have a right to.

 

Also had to bear significant risk due to Graven Hill, having to spend £50k up front and signed up to a further £100k+ worth of materials and contractors before we even got to sign for the contract on the plot. Stupidly risky. Next self build would be traditional for certain.

 

As for the health and safety, was very taken aback at the living on site. That's a strict no-no for us. Not even a caravan or mobile home. Graven Hill to their credit are very responsible here, enforcing all the CDM rules to the letter, with a full time H&S officer on site every day. It is nice knowing that everyone is taking that seriously and not acting like idiots! :D 

 

7 hours ago, Russell griffiths said:

TBH I was very impressed with both the people building last night, I don’t have many good thoughts regarding the younger generation and think the majority of 20-30 year olds are a bunch of wasters, however I was pleasantly surprised by the chubby lad and his misses. 

Well done to both builders, ( I was going to say couples, but she gave him the elbow) hope he finds a better model and the old one is jealous as hell. 

 

Shame. You're invited to come down and join ourselves and our neighbours to hopefully change your mind about us young-uns. Most of us are far from the stereotypical millennial that the tabloids love to hate.

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On 11/04/2019 at 22:06, ProDave said:

This time one couple split up and he then could not afford to finish so is living in a barely habitable house, but with a lovely garden.

 

Next door a floating staircase that is completely devoid of any handrails. And the treads bend when you step on them.

 

Both over budget. 

yes floating stairs --and they are going have kids??

our BC would have a heart attack if he saw that 

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Posted (edited)

I think the single most interesting point about the two builds from this week’s episode were both spearheaded by people who are construction professionals ... Quantity Surveyors no less.

 

Self-build will be working when it is being done more by drama teachers and telephone sanitisers from the B-Ark.

 

And they both came within reasonable distance of budget, and at least one said iirc that the important point was that they did not change much.

 

I think this is what Kevin McCloud has been wanting to cover since about 2001, recalling no his comments when doing the Hedgehog one in Brighton, and the Estate in Brum.

 

Ferdinand

 

 

 

Edited by Ferdinand
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