Project description

Character and performance were two things Beccy and Michael didn’t want to compromise on when embarking on their long dreamt of self-build journey in Cookley, Worcestershire which is why George Barnsdale’s timber windows and doors are perfect for them.

external view of a brick and timber house

Having moved into their original home in 1988, the couple who first met at university whilst studying to become Chartered Surveyors, had always imagined building their forever home in the back garden. The land is beside the Staffs and Worcs Canal where they moor their gorgeous narrow boat.

It took a number of years to secure planning permission, having had their first application in 2012 denied. In July 2018 they tried again and after a year long wait were given permission to build. Having been avid followers of turn key self-build companies, Border Oak stood out for their elegant, traditional designs, excellent quality and price.

Windows are integral to the look

When it came to the windows, Beccy and Michael were happy to go with Border Oak’s recommendation of George Barnsdale as part of the package as they trusted them implicitly. Having had timber windows in their existing home, they knew they were a great investment, can easily be fixed, refreshed with a coat of paint and last a long time. We really didn’t want uPVC or aluminium and we are delighted we went with George Barnsdale.

casement window with shutters

Installation of the windows was managed by Border Oak alongside the main building structure. The couple organised the fit out and plumbing/electrics themselves. Being surveyors, they were well qualified to oversee the project themselves, with Michael in particular rolling his sleeves up, laying floors, painting and making furniture.

Self-build journey documented on Instagram

We saw Instagram as a way to record our self-build journey, giving us something to look back on and remember the good times (and bad). Michael had followed other self-build accounts and was inspired to keep his account up to date in order to help others.

“I hoped that our journey might inspire and help others looking to embark on their own self build”

Triangular timber windows in the open plan kitchen/living space

Having planned to have an open plan kitchen, living and dining space, the couple worked with their architect to help bring their ideas to life. The triangle shaped casement windows were something that the architect suggested and we loved the idea.

exterior view of conservatory with casement windows

During the summer months, the afternoon sun floods the room with light.

Interior of upstairs room with beamed ceiling

How was your journey with George Barnsdale?

We were recommended to use George Barnsdale by Border Oak who had samples of windows, colours and hardware. We took some colour samples home with us to ponder on too. As the wooden windows started being installed, the couple say they were impressed. Having only looked at drawings, the couple were surprised by the size of the front entrance door.

closed Moss Grey front door

We had only seen the door on drawings but it really is stunning and we get lots of compliments on it

Commenting on the performance of their George Barnsdale wooden windows and doors, Beccy said “We are very very happy with the performance, no issues at all. They are modern, secure and match our home beautifully.”

closed Moss Grey side door with window

Advice to other self-builders considering George Barnsdale timber windows and doors

“Invest up front to ensure you get it right first time so that you aren’t having to replace items and to ensure minimal maintenance. It’s worth looking at the longer term cost savings as it can be a false economy to compromise because of price.”