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Freehaus - Ashton Road Water Tower


Adaptation of a decommissioned water tower to a functional family home in Roade, Northamptonshire.









Situated to the south of Roade, Northamptonshire, the Ashton Road Water Tower is located within a designated open countryside area. This brutal decommissioned utility was once vital to the famous piano factory, Pianoforte until its closure in the 1980s.

Having been dormant for nearly forty years and following one year of planning negotiations, the Water Tower is now set to become a unique Grand Designs family home.

Central to the brief was the desire to have a plethora of quirky elements, which include a sky garden, an entertaining floor and a spa. The design is set over four floors, which are linked by a sweeping concrete staircase, a stainless steel slide and a fireman’s pole.

Following a successful planning application, the challenge now lies in technically adapting this historic structure to a functional family home. Adopting Passivhaus principals will enable us to achieve a sealed façade, mitigating the noise from the adjacent electrical substation whilst advanced 3D structural modelling will allow the team to study the Water Tower concrete shell in order to bring light to all habitable rooms without dramatically altering its external appearance.

Concurrently, we undertook an advanced survey to assess concrete strength, ground contamination and ecology status.

The project is now on site.

Word from the client

Take pride in what you do and be passionate about the job! This is what Freehaus is all about.
Freehaus Director Tom’s enthusiasm and immediate creativity when we met him, was what made us say: ‘That’s our architect for the Water Tower!’
The team at Freehaus is clearly driven by a passion for what they do. Above all, they listened and built on our wishes to give us a truly unique design.
There is no simple way of getting through planning for such a building. Tom’s extensive knowledge led us successfully through the obstacles we were facing.
I feel we’ve built a relationship with Tom and that he really understands us. We appreciate everything Freehaus has done so far, even above and beyond what is required to help us achieve a dream home. The team has been really fantastic and I cannot fault the communication and promptness in everything they do. I am sure there is still more to come. Keep up the good work guys!

Client Testimonial, Ashton Road Water Tower