These days, there is no such thing as a 'normal family'. Once upon a time, most people would have said a normal family is what we define today as a nuclear family- a married couple living with their biological children. Statistically, around 40% of marriages in the UK end in divorce, with around 30% of them ending by the 20th wedding anniversary. With this in mind, it is safe to say that no longer a normal family can be defined as a nuclear family, as stepparent's, stepsibling's, and half siblings now come into the equation.
With the notion of a normal family hard to define, it is just as hard to define a normal family home. Maybe thoughts of a suburban townhouse, or detached brick home in a quiet street spring to mind? Once upon these were the typical houses that families lived in, but modern life now demands modern homes, and the exterior façade of a family home is hard to delineate.
Modern practices allow for homes to built from a huge range of materials, in any shape and size, and in the most obscure places. No longer does the streetscape consist of carbon-copy brick houses, but is rather broken up by modern façades that keep cities and towns looking fresh, and displaying the character and individuality of each household. These 6 British homes represent the architecture of today, and what modern family homes may continue to look like in the future.
London has long been known as a forward thinking city; a place where anything goes, and nothing is out of the ordinary. This rings true in the city's architecture, too, as you see examples of modern architecture tucked in beside century-old buildings throughout the city.
One such example is this home in the De Beauvoir area of East London. Owned by photographer Ed Reeve and built by architect David Adjaye, this home is anything but normal. It's all-black timber façade, and unconventional box shape, means it immediately stands out from the existing typical townhouses that make up the streetscape of most of residential London. Lived in by Ed and his family, their home is also often rented for film and photography shoots.
This home is also in a modern cube shape, although this time set amongst the green surrounds of the Oxfordshire countryside. Little would you know that this home has been built on a tight budget, with its clean cuboid form assembled from a flat pack of structural timber panels. It shows that beautiful homes need not be expensive, and that sometimes beauty comes from simplicity. To take a look inside this wonderful home by Adrian James Architects, click here.
Sitting on the site of an old garage, this ultra-modern 2 bedroom house right by Kings Cross Station in London is a piece of 21st century architecture, with its façade of grey basalt and steel honouring the industrial heritage of the area. It's central location, and proximity to St. Pancras station meant it appealed to all Londoners, including the increasing number of London-Paris commuters.
Built by Facit Homes, Tring House is a modern family home in Hertfordshire, that sits within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, meaning extra care must be taken due to the conservation status of the landscape. The modern box form of the exterior façade deems the home instantly recognisable, and its modern theme continues with its efficient use of power and ability to retain heat.
There is something very special about home conversions, be it a mews conversion, a barn conversion, warehouse conversions, and in this case, a Grade II listed 17th century house that has been converted into a modern home and art gallery. The award-winning home by Dow Jones, which was sold with the help of The Modern House, features 3 bedrooms, and an extended ground floor which doubles as a gallery. The modern interior is juxtaposed by the exposed brick of the original building, which tells the history that the building holds.
Architect Nicolas Tye has built this modern family home that aims to help its residents integrate with their surroundings, with its functional layout and design that steps down with the topography of the site. Its abundance of glass lets the occupants feel as though are living with nature, helped along by the material choices and colours.
Curious to see inside more beautiful British homes? Then take a look inside these idyllic English Countryside Retreats.