Private Client

Victorian Puzzle Box

The rejuvenation of an 1850s canal-side home to improve functionality and comfort while preserving historical features and character.

Situated within the Duncan Terrace/Colebrooke Row conservation area, this historic residence has maintained much of its original charm since its completion in the 1850s. The home showcases a beautifully preserved façade, marked by the round-arched entrance with its original six-panelled door, pilaster jambs, and fanlight.

Victorian Puzzle Box is unique from the remainder of the row due to its direct access to the canal towpath, a feature that has been poorly maintained but restored in this complete refurbishment.

The Lower Ground Floor was redesigned to become the social heart of the home. The floor was lowered to increase the overall height to 2.6 metres, and a new staircase following the direction of the existing one was installed. The space is modernised with underfloor heating, waterproofing, and larger windows for natural light.

Relocated to the front of the home, the kitchen features high-level, freestanding cabinets to maintain an open atmosphere and the original walls. The space is more versatile and accessible with new folding and sliding doors between the kitchen and the living/dining area.

The Ground Floor, known for its high ceilings and the spacious drawing room extending the length of the building, received a tasteful update. An existing bathroom was replaced by a study space, strategically located near the rear window for inspiring views of the garden and canal.

The First and Second Floors underwent modest renovations, involving the addition of en-suite bathrooms with floor-mounted fixtures and floating wardrobes. These changes, carefully planned to be reversible, will help maintain the building’s historic fabric while enhancing its functionality for future owners.

The Third Floor, housed within a mansard roof extension added in the 1970s, received internal layout modifications to provide flexible space division for guests. This includes the installation of a new staircase, the addition of fold-down beds, and a relocation of the bathroom to accommodate a full front bedroom.

Victorian Puzzle Box
Private Client
London, UK
Alan DempseySam Lyons
Quality Surveyor: White & Lloyd Main Contractor: Advent Developments Corporation Ltd Structural Engineer: Webb Yates Engineers CDM Consultant, Building Control, & Party Wall Surveyor: Shore Engineering Arboriculturalist: Arbtech