This is an elegant family home, combining a formal exterior with a more contemporary free-flowing interior,built on a restricted site. For many, the word classical is synonymous with Georgian design, but we wanted to get away from a traditional Georgian style on this site. The style is closer to that of the Italian master Palladio than to anything British. It is designed so there is very little circulation space—there are no long corridors anywhere—maximising usable living and accommodation space. In fact, the house works on a roundabout principal with a circular area at the centre on all three floors. On the first and second floors this space is left open, making a dramatic light well from the ground floor up to the roof lights and down to the circular hall. It is somewhat unusual to have a house of this size that is nearly square; normally this style of house is two or three times wider than it is deep. This again reflects the nature of the plot on which it has been built. The sloping site is reflected within the house by incorporating dramatic steps between rooms. In the kitchen area, these steps are used to create a visual break between the interlinked spaces—cooking, dining, living and so on. Landscape architect, Beth Moore, implemented a scheme to soften the impact of the house on what is actually a relatively small plot. At the front is a formal garden, planted with hebes and agapanthus, and hedging is being established to soften the boundary lines. The two mature trees on site have been retained and the semi-walled garden to the rear has climbers trained up it. Overall this is a classically stylish house that is surprisingly informal and relaxed.