Packhourse Lane, Marcham, Oxfordshire

A four house development at Packhorse Lane, in Marcham village in Oxfordshire, showcases the versatility of the VELFAC composite system, with VELFAC windows and casement doors bringing contemporary design and low energy performance to both traditionally styled houses and an innovative, modern home.

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‘Best of both worlds’
‘VELFAC offers the best of both worlds,’ says architect Allister Godfrey. ‘The flat frame delivers a flush finish with minimal visible casement, thermal efficiency is very good, and the internal timber frame is very popular with domestic clients. To find all these benefits within an affordable price bracket is rare.’

Traditional and contemporary
Three houses at Packhorse Lane reflect the predominantly traditional architecture of the nearby village, while the fourth, highly contemporary dwelling was built to fit the remaining land within the plot. All properties feature VELFAC glazing, installed in bay windows, punchhole units, and two storey glazed walls. Bi-parting VELFAC doors are also an important feature, and in the contemporary home the bi-parting door extends across the full width of the property, with an equally wide glazed VELFAC sliding door set into the balcony above. Despite this large expanse of glass, excellent thermal performance meant that standard VELFAC double-glazed units were sufficient to meet all thermal regulations, allowing residents full use of floor space.

Finishes to complement the design palette
The versatility of the VELFAC frame also allowed Allister to specify finishes which would complement the design palette used internally and on external facades. ‘The houses feature grey brick, timber and (in the contemporary house) dark grey metal cladding, so we specified a light grey finish for the external aluminium framing to complement the materials used, especially the timber cladding which will fade to silver over time. By contrast, internal VELFAC timber framing is painted white to support the contemporary, light interior design which features in all the properties on the site.’ The properties came onto the market in early 2016 and were all sold within four months.