Location: Suffolk, UK
Size: 250 sqm
IF_DO was founded in 2014 by three good friends, bored by inaction and excited by the possibility of doing things differently. They believe architecture has the power to improve lives and make communities happier and stronger. They have a knack for building relationships, exceeding expectations, and delivering projects with people at their heart.
They won the first competition we entered, The Dulwich Pavilion, and its success led to work across Education, Arts, Community, Workspace, and Housing. They are a close team who holds each other to the highest standards. Our growing reputation is for well-loved and thoughtful work.
The careful restoration and extension of the Little Horsecroft Cottage is part of a wider strategy for the entire Little Horsecroft Estate (including the adjacent Little Horsecroft Barn). The cottage is a 19th-century farmhouse with an earlier 17th-century core. A holistic approach to the site will mean that the barn and cottage will work together — both functionally, in terms of access and flexible accommodation; and, ecologically, by sharing a freshwater borehole; ground source heat pumps; reed beds; and solar energy.
The works to the cottage have been undertaken with traditional crafts and materials. These are harnessed in a contemporary way in the wings of the new extension, creating a harmonious yet strikingly different addition to the property.
Energy efficiency was of the utmost importance. To ensure the house would be retained as a home for generations to come, the cottage needed to be future-proofed for 21st living—it had to be light, comfortable, affordable to run, and kind to the environment. The project achieved a 78% reduction in CO2 emissions from heating and a 60% reduction overall.
“We are genuinely delighted with the architect’s input into design and delivery—converting our cottage from a damp, dark, draughty, impractical, and structurally unsound building into a strong, cozy, light, user and eco-friendly building with a clear demarcation but satisfying harmony between old and new.”
— Peter Kilner, client